Merewether Surf House has a couple of different places - there is the higher-end restaurant ($30-$40 for mains), the bar and downstairs there is the cafe (can't book tables though).
Merewether Beach Hotel is across the road - typical pub food.
Wickham Boatshed - near the marina, casual cafe, yummy food though.
Jonahs Restaurant (at Noah's on the Beach Hotel) - restaurant overlooking Newcastle Beach. Lovely food, great view but it doesn't have open air dining.
Honeysuckle Precinct - I am not a huge fan of The Landing, but others like it. Silo is okay. Nagisa is good (Japanese food). Honeysuckle Hotel is good for lunch (pub style food), too crowded/noisy for dinner if you want to hear a conversation. Meet is very good, but no water views.
Scratchleys - lovely, a bit more $$
Customs House Hotel serves decent pub meal, Paymasters Cafe next door has very nice food but is a little more expensive.
Rustica is lovely too.
ETA: Another option is to buy fish n chips from Scotties takeaway (Scott Street, East Newcastle) for a picnic. Short walk south to Newcastle Beach or short walk north to Newcastle foreshore area & harbour.
Plus there is also water views around Lake Macquarie too ...
Edited by YodaTheWrinkledOne, 14 June 2019 - 01:40 PM.