The cold nights are drawing in, we have one less hour of daylight in the evenings, and we still have a long wait before the festive season. In short, we all need a little something to look forward to. Here's my list of top events happening in the region in November.
Latimer's Seafood Lunch Club
Latimer's are renowned for selling the best local fresh fish in Newcastle and Sunderland, and now they're hosting their first lunchtime event with north east pop-up chef Anthony Brown. Treat yourself to a leisurely 3 course lunch, based on the French notion of 'Plat de Jour' (that's 'dish of the day', if your French lets you down). Main course and dessert for £20 per person.
3rd November, 12.15pm
Latimer's Seafood Deli, Shell Hill, Bents Road, Whitburn, Sunderland, SR6 7NT
Living North: The Essence of Christmas Fair
This is the largest event of its kind in the region, and a definite highlight of the north's foodie calendar. The four day event will showcase 250 stalls featuring food, drink, interiors, arts and gifts. Start your Christmas shopping early (well, I personally think that November is early for this sort of thing) and have a browse amongst the wares of local beauties such as Northumberland Cheese, Mr Vikkis, Wylam Brewery and Lottie McPhee's. What's perhaps most impressive though is the list of demonstrators featuring over the course of the event, which reads like a 'who's who' of the north east's culinary scene. Terry Laybourne of 21 Hospitality Group, Mark Percival of Eslington Villa, Bob Arora of Sachins and David Kennedy of NE2 Food Social make up just the tip of the iceberg, so plan in advance to avoid missing your favourites. Tickets are £6 in advance or £8 on the door.
3rd-6th November, 10am-4/5pm
Newcastle Racecourse, Gosforth Park, Newcastle, NE3 5HP
Christmas Food and Drink Festival
The Lewis and Cooper (my new favourite place) annual celebration of great food and drink. This is an opportunity to meet dozens of Lewis and Cooper's suppliers and producers, and take advantage of some extra special offers and discounts. Plus, it aims to raise thousands for their chosen charity, Help for Heroes. Tickets are now free.
Sunday 6th November, 10am-4pm
Lewis and Cooper, 92 High Street, Northallerton, DL7 8PT
Not foodie, but still a must-visit for those in and around Durham. The dazzling festival returns to the city for four nights with installations and projections that will light up Durham's buildings, streets and bridges. The first Lumiere in 2009 attracted over 75,000 visitors to the city and it's getting bigger, and well, as you might imagine, brighter. Selected restaurants will also be running special deals for festival attendees, including Oldfields who are offering 25% food bills (print off the voucher from Lumiere's website).
17th-20th November, 6-11pm
Durham City Centre
Newcastle Continental Market
The Continental Market returns to Newcastle City Centre just before the run up to Christmas. There's nothing better than getting wrapped up and wandering around the hustle and bustle of the market with a mulled wine, picking up some Christmas presents and trying out the many food stands. Expect paella, currywurst, waffles, crepes, and more.
21st November - 3rd December
Grey's Monument, Grey Street and Grainger Street, Newcastle City Centre
Enjoy, and do let me know the verdict if you attend any of these events.