Tastebuds were certainly tingling at intu Eldon Square last week as the shopping centre delivered a smorgasbord of foodfest treats to banish the January blues.
 
A week-long FOODelicious event welcomed gargantuan gastronomic delights, delectable dining deals as well as fun activities for all the family, free entertainment and cool competitions with great prizes.
 
Eateries from intu Eldon Square’s chic new dining quarter engaged shoppers on the malls with a range of great games and giveaways.
 
Comedy Waiters provided their own inimitable style of entertainment in the dining quarter, while culinary jugglers and magicians brought joy to spectators of all ages. Smashburger transported visitors to the Big Apple with a New York style taxi – the subject of many selfies for young and old alike.
 
The celebratory mood continued with lively cultural performances by the Chiquitos-Doritos mariachi band as well as music from north-east singer songwriter Jake Houlsby, playing his eclectic mix of classic and modern tracks.
 
Hundreds of prizes were won throughout the week, giving shoppers the opportunity to win a range of tasty treats including gift vouchers and free meals at some of intu Eldon Square’s hottest restaurants.
 
Live ice sculpture carving was one of the highlights of the weekend, where a £1,000 intu Gift Card was frozen within the sculpture, ready for one lucky person to win by guessing the correct time the card will fall out of the melting ice.
 
Kelly Mitchell, 35 from Blyth, commented:
 
“The ice sculpture is absolutely stunning, I love how they have incorporated the peacock from the different types of intu shoppers, very impressive.”
 
Emma Thompson, from Killingworth, shopping with children Jessica (10), Paige (8) and children’s friend Ruby Nelson (9) said:
 
‘We’ve been to a few of the restaurants in Grey’s Quarter but we definitely want to try Smashburger! The New York style taxi is great and the kid’s loved it, they didn’t want to get out!’
 
Following his commission for the ‘Lollipops and 99s’ artwork, which appears on the dividing partition at one of the entrances to the new dining area, internationally acclaimed artist Alexander Miller hosted a painting master class in centre on Sundayand The Globe Gallery’s Blossom Tree project engaged with shoppers who were keen to share their hopes for the new year.
 
intu Eldon Square marketing manager Tania Vesty said:
 
“FOODelicious was a fantastic opportunity for us to highlight the wide variety of restaurants we now have in centre following a £25m investment, and to showcase the additional 20 eateries in our enhanced dining offer. Customers have enjoyed a week of exclusive dining opportunities, free entertainment, amazing competitions and fun and games for all the family. At intu Eldon Square food events are always hugely popular occasions in the calendar, so we’re extremely excited to have brought something different to the table to celebrate both the new dining quarter and the new year!”