Jesmond Dene has all the trappings of a modern country house hotel – but transplanted into a prosperous city suburb. Originally Georgian, the building was extended in Victorian times & opened in its current guise during 2005. Service in the restaurant has a certain Geordie accessibility, while the menu zips along with a verve that is more than backed up by the skill of the kitchen. Lunch could offer a broccoli soufflé starter, served with a three-cheese sauce & chervil, followed by fisherman’s pie with mixed greens & choucroute. For dinner there might be an excellent grilled duck foie gras terrine with mango, herb salad & black salt, ahead of Northumberland venison loin accompanied by swede, pied bleu mushrooms & snowball turnip, while a rich chocolate & salted caramel sphere with peanut ice cream rounds things off admirably. One of Newcastle’s very best.