When my boyfriend and I wanted to treat my Mam on her birthday, we decided on 12 Harland Place on Norton High Street – the restaurant and café that everyone seems to be checking into on Facebook and is fairly close to us.
When you walk in, you immediately set eyes on American-style booths, the loft-style apartment decoration, and a deli counter filled with homemade desserts. It feels more like a café than a restaurant, which I like. On a quiet lunchtime, we have no trouble getting a table and instantly start to eye up both the drink and food menus. After we’d ummed and ahhhed over various dishes, we relax, sip our drinks, and chat while eagerly waiting for our food as we are all starving.
Considering it isn’t busy at all, there is a wait for the drinks especially (two bottles of Corona, one cocktail) and the food. As it is my first time visiting I put it down to the focus on using fresh ingredients, and having previously worked as a waitress, I understand that there can be reasons unknown to the customer that affect service time such as the drinks fridge or glasses needing topping up.
My spiced lamb kofta with skinny fries and salad arrives and I eat the lot, except for the ends of the kofta that are quite dry. I find that this is a regular occurrence with kofta, as most of the fat disappears when you cook it. The mint yoghurt that comes with it is really essential (although I have to ask the waiter for mine) and I enjoy the crispy fries but did wish they were the homemade chunky ones. Overall, I happily polish the whole meal off.
My dinner pals had ordered the steak burger (again with skinny fries and salad) that was a decent size and illustrate I think with a satisfied nod, and the clam spaghetti, which I am really jealous of. Mam is delighted by the huge amount of clams in her dish, and happily washes them down with a Bramble cocktail (I sample, very zingy).
After we polish off our drinks and food, we decide there is room for dessert after examining the double-sided blackboard. I have the Ferrero Rocher cake, which I devour considering I’m ‘not-a-dessert person’ and am now starting to question my original status. And the other two didn’t say much when they were scoffing their peanut butter brownies, one with cream and one with ice cream.
With its relaxed décor and atmosphere, I’d happily return to 12 Harland Place to sample more cocktails as I was driving (sob) and also try the seafood dishes that look delicious.
Spiced Lamb Kofta with Skinny Fries and Salad
2 x Coronas
Bramble Cocktail (Brandy, gin, berries, apple, ice)
Burger with Skinny Fries And Salad
Ferrero Rocher Cake with Ice Cream
2 X Peanut Butter Brownies, One with Cream and One with Ice Cream
12 Harland Place, Norton, Stockton-on-Tees TS20 1AL