Kick back and relax with vinyl at The Mule on Rouge

Berwick's thriving café scene is about to get a new addition which is looking to fill a gap in the market.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 3rd December 2017, 7:18 am
Sion and Zoe Gates at The Mule on Rouge
Sion and Zoe Gates at The Mule on Rouge

The Mule on Rouge on Bridge Street is opening on December 9 and will offer vegan-curious, freshly prepared, ethical food.

It will double as a vinyl music outlet, one of the first in Berwick, offering customers the chance to buy and sell records or sit back in a listening booth and soak up the atmosphere.

The café is currently being fitted out in what was most recently Jones & Jones gift shop and, prior to that, The Photocentre.

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It is being run by Sion and Zoe Gates, familiar faces to many through their work at nearby Berwick Youth Hostel.

“We’re working on a vegan-curious concept, offering ethical and healthy food which is locally sourced where possible,” said Sion.

“There isn’t anything of that kind in Berwick at the moment. You don’t have to be vegan or vegetarian to come in though!

“We also know there are a lot of cafés in Berwick but they are all busy so we’re confident there is a market for something a bit different.”

Soups, stews and bagels will be cornerstones of the menu, with coffee from Berwick-based Northern Edge.

Music will be an important feature, with the couple keen to tap into the current craze for vinyl.

“We want people to come in and feel there’s an atmosphere and ambience, so they can expect to hear music most of the time” said Sion. “We won’t be playing one particularly genre. There will be some new, some old classics and we hope there will be something for everyone.”

Customers can even bring in their old LPs and 45s to play if they haven’t yet been out to purchase a record player!

But where did the café’s rather unusual name come from?

“We tried for a while to come up with serious names but nothing really felt right,” said Zoe.

“We kicked a lot of names around, no pun intended,” added Sion. “Zoe’s into horses and we thought the characteristics of the mule – hard-working and reliable – fitted in with what we’re trying to achieve.

“It might be a bit of a Marmite thing. We know some people love it and others don’t, but at least we’ve got people talking!”