Located above sainsburys in Ponteland, the entrance is fairly unimpressive with not much to hint at what awaits you. Once upstairs it is an initially very impressive space, all tricked out with dark wood type fittings, tiles, display bottles of wine & shiny bits. It was Saturday night, we had phoned to book, but were told it wasn't necessary. Upon arriving the place was busy, but we only waited a few minutes to be seated.
The menu is anglicised italian with a number of 'popular' additions (a bit less italian) such as deep fried prawns with chilli sauce.
The service was of the 'attract the attention of one of the staff walking by' type. Attentive it wasn't, though once one had attracted attention, the staff fulfilled your request reasonably effectively.
The food was edible, tho our pizza base-d items on both starter and main course both had burnt oily deposits on their bottoms, caused by contact with a dirty cooking surface. I did mention this to the waiter but it was dismissed by him. Our mushroom risotto seemed to have been made with a 'mushroom flavoured' stock powder, white wine seemed absent and the mushrooms were pickled, but by piling on the parmesan it was quite tasty! Oh we did have to wait an hour between finishing our starter and our main course coming, and then we did have to ask where it was, oh and then they brought the wrong dish for my partner, and we had to sit and wait again for hers to arrive.
We had run out of energy to fight for a pudding... Plus we couldn't stand any more birthday specials - the lights are dimmed and the staff all sing happy birthday, there were 6 of them in the 2 hours we were there.
There is a weird lack of atmosphere for a place stuffed full of maybe 150 punters.
I reckon it is best viewed as a comparison with frankie & benny's or bella pasta. A family oriented, chain like hell-hole. Fur coat and no knickers. Lots of 'injections of start-up capital' but not alot of love for food. Bums on seats love...