For the traditionalists out there, no Sunday is complete without a roast dinner, right? When I was asked If I would like to review this timeless classic at The Royal York Hotel how could I refuse? Having been out the night before, the idea of a posh roast dinner you’ve not had to cook yourself was very appealing and felt like just what I needed!
The Royal York Hotel is very easy to find, being right next door to the train station. We opted to drive to York, we needn’t have worried about parking and there was plenty of parking in the grounds, once we’d got the ok from the friendly door man. You may have seen my Autumn/winter styling post which was shot in the beautiful gardens of the Hotel, and provided the perfect backdrop for an outfit post. To get to the restaurant we had to take a short walk through the hotel, with its striking high ceilings and impressive features and decor. ‘The Refectory’ has a very comfortable feel, with its glass roof, exposed brick walls and chic lighting.
For their ‘Sunday lunch’ they offer a choice of either 2 or 3 courses, priced at £19.95 and £23.95 respectively. To start, I chose the smoked ham hock, quail’s egg, home made piccalilli and toasted mustard monkey bread. Samantha chose the Smoked salmon, avocado and granary toast.
The ham hock portion size seemed ideal for a starter. The taste was nice, not too salty but Delicious and combined well with the tangy but tasty piccalilli. The salmon portion size was maybe slightly too large for a starter, perhaps would of been better suited as a brunch dish. Sam’s only comment was that it may have been better served pre-made, perhaps as a brushetta type dish and seasoned with salt and pepper, as it didn’t come with any. However, these were only minor points as she really enjoyed it.
For main course, there was only one choice for me, the classic Sunday roast, which was roast beef. Sam opted for Chef’s special, which confit of duck with carrott puree and fondant potato. I thought the presentation of my main course was good, it seemed a perfect balance of beef to vegetables and the home made Yorkshire pudding looked crispy and well rise. We were a little unsure whether the broccoli cheese came with my roast or with the confit of duck, but shared it out anyway.
The beef was cooked well and lovely and pink in the middle, making it nice and tender. There was a good choice of seasonal vegetables, including roast potatoes carrots, savoy cabbage, not forgetting the broccoli cheese! The roast potatoes could perhaps of been a little bit crispier, but were still tasty. The Yorkshire pudding was nice and crisp, but had a unusual sweetish taste. Lastly, the gravy was fantastically delicious and full of flavour, my only criticism being, it was a little too thin.
The confit of duck was a little salty, but this was expected. The flavour was still good and the meat fell off the bone. The accompaniments worked well, however, Sam thought the carrot puree was perhaps a little too sweet and lost the flavour of the actual carrot. However, this didn’t detract from the overall taste and flavour of the dish.
To round off the afternoon, the dessert I chose was baked chocolate tart with honey comb chunks ad creme fraiche. Sam opted for the Chef’s special again, which was chocolate eclair with chocolate orange ganache centre. I thought the presentation of booth dishes was excellent.
The baked chocolate tart was wonderfully rich and the pastry was not too thick and baked well. I thought the portion size of the tart was perhaps a little large, but this is a very minor point. The chocolate orange flavour in the eclair ran through subtly, but the pastry was perhaps a little dry. I couldn’t resist trying one of their latte’s to accompany my chocolate tart, served elegantly with a touch of latte art.
Overall, I really enjoyed Sunday lunch at The Royal York Hotel, The Refectory is a lovely, setting and has a feel of glitz and glamour to it. The food on the whole was good and the staff were very attentive. I think the prices for both the 2 and 3 course options for Sunday lunch are reasonable value for money. For more information or to make a booking, check out their site here.
*Food & drink was complimentary for review purposes