A new restaurant and bar bridging the gap between healthy and indulgent food has opened its doors in Tynemouth.

The Coast Kitchen and Bar is offering those worried about their waistlines and wellbeing a guilt-free way to feed their culinary cravings.

The emphasis is on serving delicious, fresh, seasonal, home cooked, and locally sourced food that diners will feel good about putting into their bodies.

The venture has opened at what was Lui’s Wine Bar and Bistro on Front Street, Tynemouth, following a £50,000 refit that has secured 16 jobs.

Coast Kitchen and Bar is the brainchild of design and marketing executive John Sproats, 43, and his sister-in- law Rachel Errington, 34, whose background is in the hospitality sector.

Well-known regional chef, Rob Arnold, 28, is heading up the kitchen following his return to the North East after an award-winning 12 month spell in Vancouver, Canada.

Coast Kitchen and Bar has drawn its inspiration from the West Coast of America, where cool, cosy and casual neighbourhood hangouts are commonplace offering wholesome, fresh, often simple, and affordable food that appeals to meat eaters, vegetarians, and vegans alike, as well as those on gluten and dairy-free diets.

The venue’s sit-in or take out menu runs the gamut of home cooked fare from nibbles like the seaweed salted organic popcorn; to breakfast options such as smashed avocado and pickled chilli with a poached egg and sour cream served on sourdough bread; Puy lentil tabbouleh, tomato and goat’s curd salad; Lindisfarne oyster shot with rhubarb and apple granita and horseradish; and heartier dishes including slow roast Crane Row Farm pork belly with white turnips, green onion and apple; North Shields landed hake fillet with white beans, bacon and gem lettuce; and cumin roasted cauliflower with braised cannellini and coriander yoghurt.

Prices range from £1.50 per person for the popcorn to £14 for the Coast meat plate with sourdough and house pickles, and the grass-fed beef bavette with sesame caponata (a traditional Sicilian eggplant dish) and purple potatoes.

There is a full range of soft and alcoholic beverages, including the exclusive Coast Middens Pale Ale, which appears on the menu teamed with both the blueshell mussels with fine herbs (£14) and the rarebit on sourdough (£5).

John says: “Our slogan is ‘eat well, feel well, be well.’ Coast Kitchen and Bar is not about making you feel guilty. It’s about taking the guilt out of food with a menu where every ingredient matters and that everyone can enjoy whether you’re a fitness fanatic, keeping an eye on your weight, want to eat more healthily, or just love delicious home cooked fare.

“You’ll still find hearty mains, fishy seaside classics, sharing platters, tempting puddings, seasonal salads, and blackboard specials. But there are healthy and energy-packed breakfasts to start your day, bold and creative lunches that offer fantastic flavour combinations but are low on fat, exotic suppers packed full of fresh and vibrant ingredients, and plenty of delicious guilt-free snacks.”

Rachel adds: “The idea is that you can dine out with family or friends in a relaxing bistro-style environment and indulge while still being good.

“The key is using fresh, seasonal, natural ingredients, that don’t contain any nasty surprises or additives, and that are grown, reared, and made with care by people who share our values. We believe you are what you eat, and if you put good things in to your body, you will feel healthier.”

John has travelled widely with work, including California, where he fell in love with the state’s burgeoning fresh, wholesome, home cooked, dining out scene which advocates that ‘clean food’ is the answer to eating out more mindfully and still enjoying yourself.

When Lui’s came on the market, he and Rachel decided to open The Coast Bar and Kitchen in their home village of Tynemouth.

The final piece of the jigsaw came when Rob joined the team.

In a decade long career he has worked at Jesmond Dene House, Irvin’s Brasserie on North Shields Fish Quay, and alongside Michelin-starred chef Kenny Atkinson when he was at Rockliffe Hall near Darlington.

Latterly he was employed at two of Vancouver’s most celebrated restaurants, Pidgin and Blacktail, winning a 2015 ‘best dessert’ accolade for his white chocolate arctic roll with foraged blueberries.

Rob says of his new role: “I’m hugely excited to be back working on the coast and to be in at the start of this fantastic new restaurant and bar.

“The focus is on high quality, healthy, home cooked food, served with the minimum of fuss. I’ll be keeping to the seasons and supporting local producers wherever possible.

“There is seafood from North Shields Fish Quay, grass-fed beef, and Northumberland cheeses. Our own Coast Middens Pale Ale is making an appearance in some of the dishes, and I’m looking forward to featuring daily specials inspired by what’s been landed at the fish quay just a mile up the road.

“Ingredients don’t get any fresher, wholesome and local than that.”

The Coast Bar and Kitchen is open 8.30am-11pm daily. There is also a take-out service called Coast@Home, and a children’s menu is available on request.