We all met at the Bistro in Park Lane eventually, on the first heavy, snowy and icy day at the end of November. Many people struggled to get there on various modes of transport and we ate a bit later than we planned.
The food was excellent but a bit ‘masterchefy’ portion wise. As ever the social aspect was perfect and everyone had a great time. We even managed some retail therapy as the students at the college had been making lovely Christmas cakes, chutneys and jam for sale. We were assured the cakes had been regularly laced with brandy for months! We’re looking forward to sampling it on 25th.
Thanks once again to Allan for organising another beautiful meal.
On Thursday 27th August a number of members from the Luncheon Group decided to ring the changes by going out for an evening meal at The Half Moon in Easington Village instead of our usual monthly lunchtime get together.
We had a very pleasant evening enjoying good company as always and very good food.
I think everyone commented on how good the food was and all would agree that the portions were extremely generous. In fact maybe a bit too generous. We couldn’t quite believe the amount of food coming out on the plates. We all made a good effort to get through it all though!!
However the surroundings were a little bit of a let-down. Myself and Jean Mullen had a bit of a laugh about how it was like stepping back in time as The Half Moon was a pub that we often visited many years ago. Literally nothing had changed. Same decor, same carpet, same curtains, same everything down to the sizzling platters on wooden boards. HaHa!!
Having said that it the surroundings did not deter us from having a really enjoyable evening and I would like to thank Allan, of behalf of all who attended, for organising it.
The member’s reactions to this meal were mixed. Good, bad and indifferent.
Those choosing the prawn cocktail and the belly pork were well pleased with their meals.
My slow cooked shoulder of beef had been re-heated probably in a microwave and was very dry. The Royal George at Shotton, serve a similar dish and this was no comparison.
The chips looked anaemic and tasted no better. The boiled potatoes were only half cooked and most went back to the kitchen. The other rather boring vegetables were “al dente” (meaning undercooked) but these pleased some people.
Considering the meals were pre-ordered the service for starters was slow. They were one soup short which took a further 10 minutes to arrive.
The main course was served on cold plates and by the time the vegetables arrived the meat was barely warm.
Some members, like myself, had been here in the past when you were lucky to get a table at lunchtime even in midweek.
It was disappointing to see there were only six other diners apart from our group.
Unfortunately I am due to go back next Tuesday with another group for an evening meal. I can only hope it is a different chef!!!!
Our Luncheon group has been running since September 2011 when Pat Williams agreed to take on the role of ‘Leader’. After nearly 2 years, Pat stood down, and was succeeded by Allan Gurney in July 2013.
We continue to be one of the largest groups within Seaham Harbour U3A. There are 61 members on my list who have attended a Lunch Club outing at some time over the last 2 years. Clearly, not everyone can make it to every outing. But numbers of attendees have ranged from 15 to 37 in my time as ‘Leader’.
We are a friendly group of people who enjoy meeting up and getting to know each other better. To aid this interaction, I prefer the venue to seat us at tables of 4/6/or 8 so that people can (if they wish) mingle with members at other tables, rather than on one or two large tables where you can only speak to the people around you. However, this is not always possible.
We meet for lunch at 12 for 12-15pm on the 4th Thursday of each month at various venues, which you will find listed separately. Menus are sent out about a month before the outing, and orders are recorded in advance, and taken to the venue about 5/6 days before the outing.
I am always on the lookout for new venues, and many suggestions are received (not all repeatable!). I try to at least go and see each suggested venue before making a booking. Some are acceptable, others are not for a variety of reasons – lack of parking; lack of disabled entrance; too expensive; uninteresting menu; poor surroundings. But I hope the Seaham harbour U3A will continue to thrive, and that members enjoy and continue to support THEIR Lunch Club – after all, it’s all about the members.