Scrann stands boldly in all its neon, yellow-canopy glory just off Norton high street. A cool and contemporary hangout serving seriously good sourdough pizza to the people of Stockton and beyond. We’re in for a pre National Pizza Day feast. It’s an icy Tuesday evening and the space is packed out with chirpy cocktail sippers and perky pizza pickers. There’s a real buzz about the place. Groups pile in for birthday celebrations, couples are wining and dining and friends chit-chat over cocktails and charcuterie.
The restaurant is decked out with DIY bike pedal stools, contemporary art, sweeping palm tree plants, industrial-style lighting and American diner-inspired condiments. There’s a relaxed vibe about Scrann – a place you can pop in for pizza with the family, but at the same time, you wouldn’t feel out of place dressed up for weekend cocktails with friends. With a good mix of science lab stools, high bar chairs, single tables and comfy seating around the sides, there’s something for all occasions in one busy, bustling environment.
The team don’t miss a trick when it comes to the tipple offering. The colourful cocktail list includes classics such as bloody Mary, espresso martini, Long Island iced tea and the old fashioned; as well as fizzy options including a strawberry belini, French 77 and sloe gin fizz. Wine people can look forward to a vibrant vino list, serving sparkly, red, white and rose from all corners of the world. Beer drinkers and spirit sippers have plenty to choose from too.
The concept is simple here. Scrummy slices of sourdough pizza served in an uber cool hangout. Go here for wood oven pizzas, Italian, German and French cured meats and cheese and delicious daily-changing specials. If you’re in for a few drinks and fancy a bite to eat, order from the antipasti menu – perfect for sharing picky bits amongst friends. You’ll find olives and almonds, burrata and garlic bread, and mussels and grilled gambas. The sourdough pizza takes centre stage when it comes to the main course, but it’s nice to see a handful of pasta dishes, salads and rustic charcuterie boards packed with artisan meats and cheeses from various regions of Italy. Diners can also select sides and crust dippers to complete the feast. Seasonal specials and daily picks keep the menu fresh and of-the-moment, with specially crafted menus popping up for events and celebrations throughout the year. We take a sneak peek at this year’s Valentine’s Day menu – a two-course dinner for £25pp and three-courses for £30pp. The meal kicks off with an antipasti starter, followed by a mix of mouthwatering pizza toppings and a side, finishing with an assiette of desserts for two.
What we ate
I go old school with an ‘old fashioned’ cocktail (£8) – Buffalo trace, bitters, orange peel, brown sugar and hot water. The perfect tipple to warm up and wake up after a frosty afternoon. My dinner date (and designated driver) opts for a soft drink, but likes the look of the sloe gin fizz (£6) – sloe gin with added sparkles. On to the food. My dinner date kicks things off with the mussels in white wine and nudja (£8). A wholesome bowl of garlic-infused pockets of goodness in a spicy tomato sauce. It’s Nana’s meatballs (£7) for me. I just can’t resist this home-cooked favourite, cooked in a tomato and parmesan sauce. After eyeing up the slow cooked beef brisket lasagne (£12) and the linguine king prawn arrabiata (£15), I cast my eye over the pizza list and I’m pleased to see so many creative toppings together. I go for the slow cooked beef pizza (£14). A perfectly crisp, yet substantial base topped with tomato sauce, melt-in-the-mouth slow cooked beef, caramelised onions and gorgonzola. The salty blue cheese zips through the succulent slices of beef – with a sweet kick from the caramelised onion. My foodie friend orders the BBQ chicken pizza (£13). Hearty chunks of chicken and bacon atop sweetcorn purée, mozzarella and a tomato and BBQ base. The pair of us swoop up every last bite, dipping our crusts in a creamy aiolo sauce (£1). The sourdough base really does make a difference. We finish our mains full and content, but without that carby over-kill. Gluten free bases are available too. We bypass dessert on this occasion, but we can’t wait to pop back in for the gelato tutti frutti (£5) and the rum chocolate mousse (£5). This Norton newbie is the perfect place to celebrate National Pizza Day this Friday (9th February). A carby, cocktail paradise has hit Stockton and we highly recommend that you check it out!