Try this: Customs House 

VENUE FOR EVERYONE: Chef Chris Coolahan on the long verandah at Customs House Newcastle. Picture: Phil HearneIF you are after cool harbour breezes, fantastic foreshore views, relaxing music and beautifully presented food then Customs House Hotel is the place for you.

Head chef Chris Coolahan dishes up gourmet-style food with all the fanciness and little of the cost. It is the perfect venue to enjoy a light lunch with the girls or a romantic night out .

Customs House Hotel is also popular for weddings and functions.

Snacks: Spicy fried chicken wings with hot sauce $12; fries with aioli $8; wedges with sour cream and sweet chilli sauce $10; nicoise salad with house-cured salmon $15; chargrilled steak sandwich with caramelised onion, rocket, housemade barbecue sauce and fries $16; crumbed chicken burger with aioli, rocket, tomato and fries $16.

Starters: Sydney rock oysters $18-$31; king prawns with avocado, iceberg lettuce and cocktail sauce $19; citrus-cured salmon with fennel, orange, mint and horseradish $18; vine tomato and buffalo mozzarella salad with olives $18; duck and cognac pate with cornichons and baguette $17; fried calamari with aioli $17; orecchiette with broccoli, raisins, pine nuts and parmesan $17.

Mains: Beer-battered fish and chips with tartare sauce and lemon $24; pan-fried snapper fillet with potato puree and burnt butter sauce $32; roasted spatchcock with grilled asparagus, zucchini and salsa verde $28; slow-cooked Black Angus beef cheek with carrot puree, spinach, speck and onion $28; lamb rump with potato gratin, green beans and rosemary jus $32; 200-gram grass fed eye fillet with Diane sauce and chips $33; 200-gram Riverina Angus sirloin with Cafe de Paris butter and chips $33.

Desserts: Chocolate souffle with vanilla ice-cream $14; strawberry Eton mess $14; orange and almond tart with creme fraiche $14; cheese plate with fruit and lavosh $22.


Address: 1 Bond Street, Newcastle

Open: Monday to Saturday for lunch and dinner, and Sunday for lunch

Phone: 49252285

Owner: Gabrielle McCabe

Head chef: Chris Coolahan