PUBLISHED: 12:27 02 December 2019 | UPDATED: 12:27 02 December 2019
A Norwich inn, which closed in the summer, re-opening under new management this autumn, has just set out its stall to become one of the best spots for gastro-pub food in the city.
The York, on Leicester Street, has had a reputation in the past as a drinkers’ pub, but under the leadership of Anna and Andrew McNeil is promising to become a haven for diners in the buzzing Golden Triangle, as it launches its food offering.
Andrew (a former tennis pro and coach who’s more recently managed properties for Adnams) brings with him a clear drive to do well, and to be a part of the growing pub scene in Norwich.
“I think there’s a lot to be done here still in the industry to move with the times. Pubs aren’t what they were 20 years ago. They can’t just be for drinkers,” Andrew explains, talking about his plans for dining at The York. “We’re now in a situation where people want more from their pubs. They aren’t just satisfied with burger and chips. The fact is they want something different, and you don’t have to charge Michelin star prices to do that. I’m so excited about what we’re going to be offering here. I’ve lived in three different countries and eaten in some of the best places. I have a real passion for food and a passion to do well. I always strive to be the best.”
The clear message from Andrew is that the food at The York is sustainable (they’re sourcing from local suppliers), seasonal (fresh produce is coming in daily) and cooked entirely from scratch on the premises, from sauces, down to the mustards.
“Everything is cooked to order and the menu will change according to demand. You won’t find a ‘plastic menu’ changing every nine months. There’ll be changes every single week. And we’re very vegan, vegetarian and allergy aware. All our dishes are created to be modified.”
Andrew promises restaurant quality food which draws inspiration from classic dishes, giving them a twist. “So instead of a traditional beef burger we have a venison and cranberry burger with pickled shallots, black garlic aioli and homemade fries. Roasted lamb loin comes with caramelised onion puree and lamb bon bon. Then there’s our fish and chips. They come with a pea and mint puree and a dusting of nori powder.”
At lunchtimes pop by for buttermilk chicken burgers, pakoras, pork polpettes, beer battered tofu sandwiches, Reuben sandwiches and more.
In the evenings, The York follows a classic a la carte formula, boasting everything from a starter of shin of beef croquette with cured egg yolk, pickled shallot and chive aioli, to mains of confit duck leg with orzo pasta, crispy duck skin and wild mushroom fricassee, and pan-roasted sea bass with mussels and XO shrimp sauce.
The dessert menu is short and sweet. Think dark chocolate salted praline tart with ice cream and boozy dark cherries, and chocolate brownie with vanilla bean meringue, caramelised white chocolate and black cherry and bourbon gel.
Sunday lunches are on the horizon. And children have their own menu too.
On the bar there are plans to introduce more craft taps shortly, there’s a comprehensive wine and spirits list, and Andrew has a range of soft drinks and alcohol-free beers, including 0.5% Ghost Ship from Adnams – considered one of the best in the industry.
“We can’t wait to see what people think of what we’re doing here. The Golden Triangle is thriving at the moment and there are some amazing restaurants in Norwich, from Benedicts to new place Benoli. When you think you have this on your doorstep, lots of unique places to eat, it’s brilliant. It’s incredible to see so many independents being successful. It’s made everyone up their game. I love it!”
The York is serving food from 12noon to 3pm and 6pm to 9pm weekdays, from 12noon through to 9pm Saturdays and from 12noon through to 8.30pm Sundays. Find the pub on Instagram and Facebook at TheYorkNR2
This content was originally published here.