Latest News - News From 2016

On the Grapevine - The Commissioners Quay Inn raises a glass to wine course


The Commissioners Quay Inn has been raising a glass to the grape with a special course organised by the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET).

 Designed to help wine and spirits professionals guide customers into making informed wine selections in what can often be a bewildering array of choice, the course had a blend of theory and practical training, which The Commissioners Quay Inn general manager Catherine Bellhouse enjoyed.

Raising a glass after passing the WSET course, Catherine said: “There is a such a wide range of wines these days for people to choose from – and it can be very difficult to decide which variety to go for and to understand how its complexities and characteristics can complements a particular dish. 

“It was very informative and certainly helped you to look beyond your favourite varieties and gain a solid understanding of different wines so we can help our customers make informed choices whether they are choosing a glass to enjoy in the bar, or to accompany a certain meal. 

“We have a super selection of wines from all corners of the globe, and all are designed to appeal to a wide range of different tastes and that can be paired with our range of homemade dishes.”

The Commissioners Quay Inn 'Try Gin-uary' is the perfect tonic to 'Dry January'


If the thought of Dry January leaves you cold, award-winning The Commissioners Quay Inn has the perfect tonic with their Try ‘Ginuary’ local craft gin showcase. 

The Commissioners Quay Inn is capturing the spirit of the gin renaissance with by turning the spotlight on pioneering local gin distillers throughout January, to bring something different to their customers’ gin and tonic. 

The inn will feature gins distilled nearby to encourage customers to put a different gin in their glass throughout January.

Already well-known for the choice and quality of the local and craft ales The Commissioners Quay Inn serves, it is now giving spirit lovers and gin newbies the opportunity to sample some of the best gins in the North and to work their way through a hand picked selection of lesser-known gin varieties.  

David Walker of The Inn Collection Group which owns The Commissioners Quay Inn said: “We’re trying to make January a little less blue by trying something that’s more of a tonic, with a small collection of local craft gins that we’ve tasted and loved. What’s more, they’re all distilled in locations close to our inns. 

“Gin is so quintessentially British, and with so many different taste variations now available, the possibilities for flavours from gin seem endless, we’re keen to showcase some directly from our little region of the world.  

“People are trying different garnishes too – ice and a slice of lemon no longer cuts the mustard and there are plenty of premium mixers upping their game to support the in-gin boom.”

Walter Riddell of Hepple Gin said: “We are thrilled that Hepple has been included in The Commissioners Quay Inn's Ginuary line up. We make our gin rather differently, using young green juniper sourced from the hills around Hepple near Rothbury in Northumberland. 

“We use two separate distillation systems and a high-pressure extraction system to bring a crisp freshness not found in any conventionally made gin. Because of the complexity of our distillery process and our exacting harvesting regime, we only make a small quantity of Hepple, our only product.”

The Commissioners Quay Inn's Try Ginuary will be showcasing: 

  • Durham Gin -  a small batch gin distilled in a 400 litre copper pot still called Lily, using traditional methods. Only a couple of hundred bottles are made from each batch and are labelled by hand. 
  • Hepple Gin – north Northumberland produced gin that’s vacuum distilled at lower temperatures to capture more flavour, including the young green juniper gathered from the Hepple Estate. 
  • Masons Yorkshire Gin – distilled slowly and traditionally in two 200-litre stills called Steve and Lefty, the first gin to be distilled in Yorkshire contains juniper and citrus flavours. 
  • Poetic License – flavoured with juniper and cardamom spice, lemon, lime and eucalyptus, this is a fresh scented gin that also contains a host of secret botanicals. 

Tasters will be able to try the different garnishes and serving suggestions recommended by the distillers to bring out the best in their gins.

Dave said: “We’re initially offering the craft gins on a limited basis during January but if they prove popular, we’ll be looking to put them behind the bar full time. 

Head chef Richard Moore at The Commissioners Quay Inn

Local flavours make for crowd pleasing warming dishes - Commissioners Quay Inn unveils new winter menu


As the days grow shorter and the nights get chillier, The Commissioners Quay Inn has unveiled its new seasonal menu, packed full of warming winter dishes.

As well as classic crowd-pleasers like our slow-cooked steak in local ale pie and a meltingly tender local ham hock with mashed potato and peas pudding, head chef Richard Moore has included some moreish modern twists too. 

An aromatic Punjabi spiced roast salmon fillet is guaranteed to warm the cockles of your heart over the chilly winter months, while the Harbour Hot Pot – a selection of local caught fish and shellfish cooked with herbs, tomatoes and shallots in a light saffron stew is a must for fish-lovers. 

The menu includes The Commissioners Quay Inn’s now-legendary steaks – seasoned with our own secret rub and seared in a special broiler to produce a caramelised outside while keeping the inside tender and juicy. 

There’s a range of pizza, burger and salad options and delicious options for vegetarians including a wild mushroom linguine and a cauliflower and chick pea curry.

Little ones aren’t forgotten and the menu offers a range of family favourites including cod bites, pasta and sausage. And all come with a free fruitshoot.

And to end your meal, Richard and his kitchen brigade have put together a knock-out selection of divine desserts including a home made Apple Tart with a sublime sauce infused with local favourite Kitty’s Ginger Wine and cream.

Head chef Richard said: “We are delighted with the new menu and have enjoyed testing and sampling dishes to grace it.

“As well as looking to include dishes that are hearty and flavoursome, we’re using a lot of local ingredients too, including fish landed at Blyth, local venison and Kitty’s Ginger Wine which we add to the syrup of our homemade Apple Tart – it proved a clear winner among the team taste testing it!”

As well as the new menu, look out for daily specials including a Friday night Fish special with £1 from every meal sold going to raise funds for Blyth RNLI. 

Commissioners Quay Inn Winter Menu

Batter believe it… Inn plays quay role in Fish Friday fundraiser for RNLI


The Commissioners Quay Inn is casting out its net for customers to support a fantastic fish fundraiser for the town’s Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

The inn is supporting the RNLI’s annual Fish Supper campaign on Friday October 14 to raise funds for the local Blyth volunteer lifeboat crew.

The nationwide event honours lifeboat crew who miss meal times and special occasions with loved ones to save lives at sea.
And on October 14, The Commissioner’s Quay Inn is putting a two-course RNLI Fish Friday fish and chip meal on the specials board from 12 noon until 9pm. Costing £10 for adults and £5 for children, £1 (50p childrens)  from every dish sold will go to Blyth RNLI to support the local crew and lifeboat maintenance.

Customers will also be able to find out more about the lifeline work of the RNLI from the Blyth crew, who will be selling merchandise and raising funds inside the inn throughout the day with RNLI mascot Stormy Stan.

The Commissioner’s Quay Inn general manager, Catherine Bellhouse, said: “Real, homemade fish and chips are right up there as one of our favourite meals as a nation. So what better way to support a lifesaving charity like the RNLI than by tucking into one of our local beer-battered fish and homemade chip meals.

“In fact, we think it’s such a great idea, we’re going to carry on the RNLI Fish Friday specials every Friday until November 25, to raise as much money as possible for the charity.

“The volunteer Blyth crew do an amazing job and make a real difference in the local community and we’re proud to support them so that they can continue to save even more lives at sea.”
Robin Palmer Crew Member and deputy press officer at Blyth RNLI said:” It’s fantastic that the Commissioner’s Quay Inn are going to the lengths they are to support their local lifeboat station and we are looking forward to working with them to raise awareness of the RNLI and also spread the word with our Respect the Water Campaign. I’m sure that the Fish Supper is going to be a great success.”

The money raised from The Commissioners Quay Inn fish supper will be used to buy equipment and pay for training for Blyth RNLI crew volunteers.

The RNLI’s fish-themed annual fundraiser aims to raise awareness of crew who drop everything ­– even weddings, birthdays and births – to venture into often dangerous waters to rescue people who have found themselves in difficulty.

In 2015, RNLI lifeboats launched on 8,228 services around the UK and Ireland, rescued 7,973 people and saved 348 lives. RNLI volunteer crew members missed nearly 7,000 meals to rescue people in need of assistance.

The RNLI provides 24-hour volunteer search and rescue services around the UK and Irish coasts, with more than 237 lifeboat stations and more than 200 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK.

The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 141,000 lives.