Long time East End favourite gets a refresh
Photography courtesy of Jacqueline Mitchell
Scottie's has long been a favourite for its fresh and sustainable seafood menu, quirky events, and laidback atmosphere. It’s been 16 years and counting since the East End foodie haunt arrived on our Newcastle shores and they’ve continued to not only fill our stomachs with top-notch food but ingrain themselves as a core business in the East End community.
Over recent years the cosy corner spot on Scott Street has not only continued to operate following a crazy two years but extended and elevated its offering and refreshed its dining experience with a brand new fit-out.
Brought to you by the mother and son duo, Jenny, and Jack Magin, we dropped by Scottie's to chat to the crew about all things Scottie's and what the future holds for this institution of a venue in the Newcastle hospitality industry.
“Sixteen years is a fairly impressive innings for someone to even stick around in hospitality, and for it to still be going strong. I jumped on board as a partner three years ago, and obviously, there was just so much for us to build on. We already had such a strong presence here but having Joel Humphreys on as Head Chef was massively pivotal. Sharing the same vision for Scottie's and establishing trust in each of our strengths and roles straight off the bat,” Jack shared.
With a pretty impressive history, the venue dates back to around the 1950s having been a corner store, the local general store, a fish n’ chip shop, to the Scottie's we all know and love today. The duo has worked hard to bring their signature beautiful, colourful, warm, and family atmosphere to the area.
Deciding it was time to give this iconic space a refresh, the team has been planning how they can renovate the space to inject some fresh vibes while still keeping with the casual and relaxed nature Scottie's is known for.
“A massive part of me jumping on board was the potential of what we could do with the interior and moving the business forward to where we want it to be. I have a friend who runs a business called Bonza Build, and they did all the tabletops and everything in here by hand. We worked with another friend, Brenton Porter, he’s the architect who has also done The Lair.
“It was very satisfying keeping it local, working with friends as well was just amazing, and we had a fairly modest budget and a super short period of time to get it done.”
The dreamy minimalistic design boasts a neutral colour palette complete with dark timber accents, wall lights from Studio Henry Wilson, and upholstery by Chapman Upholstery; the refurb has managed a perfect balance of approachable and minimal, yet still elegant and sophisticated.
With Head Chef Joel Humphreys still at the helm in Scottie's kitchen, the East End venue continues with their offering of sustainably caught fish, sourced predominately from local fishermen where possible, the menu changes depending on what’s in season, plentiful and running at the time.
“A lot of the approach is more or less the same. We’re a seaside restaurant and Joel focuses on simplicity, and the local sustainable produce as much as we can.
“We also really thrive on the element of surprise here. I think we have this reputation of just a fish and chip shop, then we’ll hit them with something like the Prawn Pancake, fresh Kingfish Sashimi, and hand-shucked Oysters, alongside some of Joel’s weekly specials; people are always surprised with where the level of food is at.”
The menu features a selection of starters, small plates, main plates, veg and salad sides, and of course – dessert! Alongside Joel’s divine creations, the venue boasts a very considered wine list, curated cocktail offering, and a selection of non-alcoholic beverages.
Always wanting to bring something a little different for their regulars to enjoy, Scottie's recently launched their monthly Wine Parties. Having so far worked alongside Victoria-based Defialy Wines, Hunter Valley-based Usher Tinkler Wines, and most recently, another Hunter Valley gem, Vinden Wines.
“On every third Wednesday of the month, we’ve been engaging with local and independent winemakers with our wine parties, and it’s really taken off. It’s very approachable. It offers five courses with five matching wines with the winemaker talking you through each glass. They've been really fun and relaxed midweek nights.”
The relaxed neighbourhood restaurant will hopefully be continuing its good-old-fashioned attentive service, quality food, and approachable vibes for many years to come. Whether you’re a regular visitor to the East End institution or have yet to experience Scottie's, make sure to drop by and see their refreshed interiors and taste the iconic Scottie's flavours.