ALWAYS SOCIAL, NEVER SALTY!
If there’s one thing I love when I visit a European city, it’s a food and drinks market. It always feels like the perfect place to socialise, get a taste of the city (literally) and have fun!
Well that’s exactly what Salt Market Social felt like for me.
Housed in a former factory in the heart of North Shields Fish Quay, Salt Market Social is a pop-up event bringing together the best of the region’s street food stalls, craft beers, spirits and music all under one roof! Adam and I were invited along to the first ‘Social’ weekend earlier this month, so on Saturday 15th August we headed across the water to check out the space and try some food and drinks.
First and foremost – it’s all socially distanced and they have excellent safety measures in place. That’s really important to me because I’m still quite nervous when I’m heading out. You give your name at the door on arrival, your temperature is taken and you’re asked to sign in using track and trace. That takes a couple of minutes then you’re on your way up the stairs to the main space and be taken to your table.
As we entered I was immediately in awe of how amazing the decor was! The walls are covered in various murals and signage- some of which you’ll definitely want a photo next to for the ‘gram FYI. There’s a real festival feel to the venue too, with bunting and festoon lighting covering the ceiling. We also got chatting to Barney, one of the founders, who told us that they’ve got the original glitter balls from the Mayfair!
We were taken to our table by the lovely Kamie who looked after us on our visit and made it such a pleasant experience. Each booking is for 90 minutes and can be made for tables of up to 8 people!
Once we were sat, Kamie ran through some rules with us and let us know how our time at Salt Market Social would work. There’s a one way system in place around the venue and to adhere to social distancing guidelines, only one member of your party can leave the table to order food then once it’s ready, it’ll be delivered to your table! Food is paid for in tokens which you can order and pay for alongside your drinks at your table from one of the Salt Market staff members. Tokens cost £3 each and all food costs either £3, £6 or £9 which makes it nice and easy to work out.
We had a look at the drinks menu and decided that we’d both try one of the local craft beers. Adam chose Errant ‘Thursday, What a concept’ purely because it had a class name and I went for Almasty ‘Triple Fruited Coconut Gose’ because Kamie said it tasted like Pina Colada and I was SO here for that. It did and it was lush!
The street food stalls at each of the Socials will vary which I think is a great idea. For opening weekend the stalls on site were Hatch 76, Lobo Rojo, Med Head, Pan Asia and La Petite Creperie who all offered a huge range of food! We made sure to turn up on an empty stomach so that we could try something from each of the stalls and we weren’t disappointed!
Our food order included the following:
Crispy Duck Wrap and Vietnamese Fries from Hatch 76.
Birria Braised Beef Tacos from Lobo Rojo.
Parmesan & Wild Garlic Pesto Fries from Med Head.
Korean Beef & Rice from Pan Asia.
‘Les Classiques’ Nutella and Les Magnifiques’ Biscoff from La Petite Creperie
Food and drinks were delicious, the tunes were great and the atmosphere was fantastic – our afternoon at Salt Market Social allowed me to feel the happiest I’ve felt in quite a few months. We enjoyed it so much that we’ve booked up ready for Bank Holiday Friday with my parents!
The next Social (as I kind of just gave away) will be August Bank Holiday Weekend and the street food stalls that will be there are Acropolis, Crispy Conewich, Chuchos, Pan Asia and Le Petite Creperie.
Opening hours will be:
Saturday and Sunday: 12pm-11pm
Tables are filling up fast so make sure you get booking!
For all FAQs, future event dates and all other information, visit saltmarketsocial.co.uk
** Full disclosure: All food and drinks were kindly gifted by Salt Market Social.