Locals of Newcastle upon Tyne will know the beauty that is Ouseburn, but have you heard of Ouseburn Coffee Co (OCC)? A coffee brand which launched in Newcastle in 2012 by a group of passionate coffee roasters and baristas. Since then the company has flourished with the openings of two cafes, one in Fenwick Food Hall and The Harvest Canteen in West Jesmond.
I had only ever been inside the Harvest once to grab a freshly pressed juice (it was delicious by the way) and fell in love with their simplistic yet very cosmopolitan décor. Since my grab and go juice I have been back and this time for breakfast. Both my friend and I arrived at the Harvest last Thursday morning around 10am and were surprised by how busy the OCC canteen was for a week day morning. We were lucky to get the last table by the counter which was great to get a good feel for the place seated deep in the café. Yet also annoying as we over looked all the food being prepared making our hunger growing more and more as each avocado smash or sweet pastry was served.
Neither my friend or I had dined at the Harvest before, so we were excited to see what our breakfast would be like. Luckily we both have very similar taste buds as well as appetites. That in mind we decided to each get our own pancakes, share some crumpets and then get a gluten free brownie to split. I know it sounds a lot and very greedy, but it was delicious and very much worth the calories.
So, the food…If you have read some of my other posts you will know I’m a sucker for anything sweet in the morning, from waffles to crepes and this time pancakes. Three pancakes were served with Nutella and fresh strawberries. Yes please! The OCC Harvest Canteen doesn’t have a kitchen but instead all the food is prepared behind the serving counter which I think is a great edition to their naturalistic feel. Pre-cooked pancakes which were a bit more like sweet creps to be honest were heated up on a stove. This didn’t put me off, but it would have been nicer to have a homemade batch. Never the less both of us loved them and if it had been etiquette to do so we would have licked our plates clean!
Next on our three-course breakfast were the crumpets. I had forgotten how much I love crumpets and this was a fantastic reminder. Two of the fluffiest and very traditional British crumpets came with two nobs of butter and a pot of homemade blueberry jam. And the jam…wow! It was absolutely delicious. If it was available to buy I would have bought pots of it. The brownie was our final challenge and I was so glad we halved it in the end. When it came I was thinking, ‘I could eat the whole thing myself’ but as I took my first bite the richness and cocoa flavour hit me and after the feast we had already eaten I was glad to have a smaller portion. I will defiantly be going back however for maybe a pot of tea and a full portion of the brownie or one of the other gluten free cake or pastry options as they looked and smelt incredible.
Of course, breakfast wouldn’t be complete without a helping of coffee to waken ourselves up for the day ahead. My friend went for the long black coffee which was priced at £2.50 and I thought I would venture out from my standard latte as I am still learning the ways of a good coffee. At the same price as the long black I ordered the Piccolo under no impression as to what that actually was. When the lovely waitress brought our drinks over I was surprised to learn that a Piccolo is basically a latte where a shot of coffee is served with silky milk in a 100ml glass. It was rather strong which I didn’t mind as there wasn’t a lot if it. It went down great with my food.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my breakfast at the OCC Harvest Canteen and will definitely be back. I quite like the idea of sitting either in the window or off to the side with my laptop and a coffee just taking in the ambiance and the beauty of the OCC décor. Perhaps even one of their sweet treats too as I know I won’t be able to resist.