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Best restaurants in York

Lorna Cowan / 18 February 2019 ( 21 July 2021 )

York Minster, the Shambles, JORVIK Viking Centre, Clifford’s Tower — there are a long list of excellent visitor attractions in the historic city of York. There’s also an impressive array of great restaurants.

Betty's in York
Visit Betty's for a wide range of sweet treats

Best for Clifford’s Tower

29 States

For one of the best panoramic views of York, head to Clifford’s Tower, an ancient monument that’s the last remaining part of York Castle. It’s a challenging climb to the top, but very rewarding. Afterwards, reward yourself further with a meal at the nearby 29 States. Authentic Indian dishes are the order of the day here, combining flavours and culinary techniques from India’s many diverse regions. An extensive vegetarian main-course menu will appease non-meat eaters.

Address: 12-13 Tower Street, York YO1 9SA
For menus and reservations:


Best for a sweet tooth

Côte Brasserie

The wonderful smell of chocolate used to fill the air in York — three confectionary factories were based in the city — and today visitors can unwrap the secrets of sweet making at York’s Chocolate Story. If the tour makes you hungry, it’s only a two-minute walk to Côte Brasserie, a stylish French brasserie. The three-course set menu, available weekdays from 12noon to 7pm, is excellent value. Anyone tempted by the Dark Chocolate Pot?

Address: 49-51 Low Petergate, York YO1 7HT
For menus and reservations:

Best for Minster views

D.C.H. Restaurant

York’s magnificent Minster is one of the world’s greatest cathedrals and is a must-see if visiting the city. The impressive place of worship is also the view diners can admire at D.C.H. Restaurant, found at Dean Court, a Best Western Premier collection hotel. It’s an intimate setting to enjoy classic British dishes, regardless of whether you’re staying overnight. If tempted to book a room, York Minster offers are often available, which include accommodation, dinner and a Minster tour.

Address: Dean Court Hotel, Duncombe Place, York YO1 7EF
For menus and reservations:


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Best for fine dining

The Rattle Owl

A restored Grade II-listed building, with the remains of a Roman road in the cellar, is the setting of the Rattle Owl, a casual dining restaurant headed by Michelin-trained chef Jamie Hall. Menus change with the seasons. If you like the organic wine, bottles are on sale in their microshop. Interestingly, staff get a share in the profits, and the restaurant supports a local charity, York’s Independent Domestic Abuse Services.

Address: 104 Micklegate, York YO1 6JX
For menus and reservations:

Best for sit-down street food

Los Moros

Following on from their successful street food enterprise at York’s historic Shambles Market, Los Moros restaurant is now open on Grape Lane, allowing diners to relish modern North African dishes in a more relaxed setting. It’s good to know, however, that the same delicious merguez sausages, hummus and falafel — all homemade — are on the menu, alongside zaalouk, shakshouka and grilled halloumi with chermoula. Flavours and spices abound — once visited, you’re sure to return.

Address: 15-17 Grape Lane, York YO1 7HU
For menus and reservations:

Best for bargain hunters


Not only is Partisan the perfect place to pop in to for breakfast, a soup or stew lunch, or a palatable evening meal on a Thursday, Friday and Saturday, the amicable rustic restaurant is also an art space and you’ll find an eclectic collection of amazing antiques and furniture for sale. It’s also situated in Micklegate, an area of the city that’s been recently rejuvenated, and under a 10-minute walk from York train station.

Address: 112 Micklegate, York YO1 6JX
For menus and reservations:

Best for a traditional treat


Betty’s famous tea rooms are considered something of a Yorkshire institution, so don’t miss out. There are two cafés in York, but the one on St Helen’s Square (the other is at 46 Stonegate) is conveniently located near the fascinating Shambles and is exquisitely decked out inside like an ocean liner. Afternoon tea is sure to be a memorable occasion, however, Betty’s is also open for breakfast, and dinner, with its Swiss-influenced menu, is a delight.

Address: 6-8 St Helen’s Square, York YO1 8QP
For menus and reservations:

Best for fish foodies

Loch Fyne

Found in a former ironmongers’ shop on the banks of the River Foss, the York branch of this reliable restaurant chain serves up a wide variety of fresh and sustainably sourced seafood. Appetising offers, such as unlimited Loch Fyne Mussels and a drink for £17, are a regular feature, and are sure to hook you in. Seafarers will also love the JORVIK Viking Centre, a three-minute walk away — the tourist attraction is built on the site of an ancient Viking city.

Address: Foss Bridge House, Walmgate, York YO1 9TJ
For menus and reservations:

Best for small plates


Although Skosh only serves snacks and small plates, each one packs a punch, so there’s no fear that you’ll leave this contemporary restaurant hungry. Indeed, far from it. The innovative seasonal menu, influenced by a wealth of world cuisine, can include chargrilled Galician octopus, Brussels sprout manchurian and miso glazed cod. Diners can watch the chef at work in the open kitchen — be warned, the mouth-watering aromas will entice you to linger longer.

Address: 98 Micklegate, York YO1 6JX
For menus and reservations:

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The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.

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