New cafe is latest offering in burgeoning Sunderland leisure quarter

Ruby's cafe, High Street West Sunderland.
Owner Steven Greener
Ruby's cafe, High Street West Sunderland. Owner Steven Greener
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A new cafe hopes to help boost trade in an up-and-coming area of the city.

Ruby’s is the latest new business to open in Sunniside, and is aiming to increase footfall with its traditional food offering.

Ruby's cafe, High Street West Sunderland.
Owner Steven Greener

Ruby's cafe, High Street West Sunderland. Owner Steven Greener

It joins ventures including Papadoms, Katie’s Garden, Gin & Bear It, Thai Bay and Barnett’s, which have all opened in the area in the past year.

At the helm of the business, in High Street West, is Steven Greener who’s been looking for the perfect premises for some time.

“I’ve been looking for the past three years for the right premises,” said Steven, who had worked in pub kitchens in the area before opening his own business.

He added: “I’ve seen a few sites, but they haven’t been quite right.

“The opportunity came up for this and the rent was fair, so I couldn’t pass it up.

“It’s an area that’s definitely increasing when it comes to footfall. It seems that the other side of town is more for retail, but this side has more places to eat.”

This week the Echo revealed how plans had been approved to transform the derelict Jopling’s site in John Street into a 122-bedroom hotel, which Steven says would again help to drive business into the area. He says interest in his venture, which is on the site of the former Relish cafe, has been positive in the first few weeks of opening.

Steven, who named the business after his seven-year-old daughter, said: “We’ve had great feedback so far, there’s been quiet days, but I realise the first year is all about establishing yourself and getting the word out there.”

The cafe serves up home-cooked cafe classics, such as breakfast rolls, paninis, steak pie, scampi and hunter’s chicken, during the day.

There are plans to install a carvery unit for Sunday dinners.

Steven added: “I’m in the process of applying for an alcohol licence, as I’d like to open on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights as a bistro.

“That menu will change regularly and will be different to the cheaper cafe food we serve during the day.”

Ruby’s has created two new jobs so far, with up to seven new positions in the future.