Sunderland Echo restaurant review: Cosy Club, Durham City
I have acquired a deserved reputation as I have gotten older for becoming, how can I put this, careful with my cash.
Not pretty mean, you understand, like the opportunist I know who earwigged a drunken wedding guest’s room number before using it to blag a free round.
Not petty mean, you comprehend, like the bloke I was told about who always switches his shower off so he can relather before a second blast.
But careful I am and certainly not in the habit of paying £16 for a double pink gin and a pint of lager at the start of a rare night out.
“You’re ruining the evening before it’s even started,” lectured my wife as she cradled said £11 double pink gin while I wept loudly into my bargain £5 pint.
In fact, she spent so much time moaning about my moaning that she didn’t even finish her drink before we headed off to our restaurant booking nearby.
Thankfully my mood improved during our first visit to Durham City’s Cosy Club.
Part of the ongoing £30m Riverwalk leisure development and next to the new Odeon Luxe cinema, the restaurant is part of a nationwide chain and the firm’s first branch north of York.
Nearly three months since it opened and the brightly-lit chandeliered interior was reassuringly busy as we were politely shown to our table.
Quickly served with drinks – only £9.30 for a pint of IPA and a white wine spritzer, before you ask – we were impressed by the variety of dishes on the menu.
Tapas, curries, burgers and traditional British favourites such as toad in the hole are all catered for.
There are also vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free dishes available.
I decided on pulled chicken and chorizo with crispy potatoes (£4.95p) for starters while my wife opted for tomato feta tapas (£4.95p).
Strong on both style and substance, we were given ample time to let our stomachs settle before our main courses arrived.
And that’s another thing which impressed me down the Cosy Club.
There’s a fine line sometimes between staff getting in a customer’s face too often and ignoring them for too long.
When you’ve got another handful of tables to satisfy then I can imagine it can be quite a juggling act.
Our waitress, however, got the balance spot on.
Likewise the chef with my fish and chips (£12.95p) and my wife’s Thai curry (£14.95p).
So deliciously filling were both mains - my wife failed to finish again - that there was no room for sweets.
Settling instead for another Goose Island Midway IPA (£5) and a latte (£2.75p), the final bill came to £54.85 before a deserved tip rounded the worthwhile damage up to £55.
See, I told you I was careful rather than mean.
To illustrate my generosity still further, here’s a tip for you all.
Durham’s Cosy Club lives up to its billing and is a relaxing venue to enjoy a pleasant evening out – even if you do see red and swear blue beforehand over the price of pink gin.
Cosy Club, The Riverwalk, Durham City, DH1 4SL, is open from 9am daily for breakfasts and closes at 11pm Sundays-Wednesdays, at midnight on Thursday into Friday morning and at 1am on Saturday and Sunday mornings.
Further details are available from (0191) 2058025 and from www.cosyclub.co.uk