Ready to explore God's Own Country?
This week’s recommendation is York Cocoa Works. We did a chocolate making workshop at their Castlegate premises. It was £17.50 each and was supposed to be an hour long. In fact it was nearly an hour and a half. During the time we learnt all about how chocolate is made and tried a few different types. There was a 85%, a 62% and an unusual white chocolate. We then could choose which type of chocolate to use and learnt how to temper it. There were different flavours you could add and also ingredients like rice crispies, crushed biscuits, meringue and nuts.
The chocolate bar is more of a slab…very big! And they were beautiful and shiny and tasted amazing! It was definitely value for money on the chocolate front.
A great activity for families or just with friends…or even on your own! I plan to make some more at home now I know how to temper the chocolate and give them at Christmas. I might even put some in my cottages as Christmas gifts.
The jewel in North Yorkshire’s crown, York is frequently voted the Best Place To Live in Britain, Still a favourite amongst even the most seasoned of travellers, this ancient walled city has been the north’s spiritual capital for 2000 years, but that’s not say it is stuck in the past; York’s affluent young student population and its influx of tourist pounds has helped to create a cultural and commercial oasis. History seeps out of every cobbled street, but the crooked old buildings house a fantastic range of designer shops, cafes, restaurants and bars. Make sure you take in the York Minster, The Shambles and Betty’s Tea-rooms.
Eating out in York – Here are a few other recommendations.
Skosh skoshyork.co.uk YO1 6JX 01904 634849 Highly rated but as yet I haven’t managed to get a table
The Star Inn the City thestarinthecity.co.uk YO1 7DR 01904 619208 Run by Michelin Star Chef Andrew Pern of The Star, Harome. Closed recently due to a fire but re-opened In April. Great location and food. I have eaten a number of times here.
Mr P’s Curious Tavern mrpscurioustavern.co.uk YO1 7HY 01904 52117 This is a new spin off from Andrew Pern, sort of Yorkshire tapas with a gin speciality. Very quirky and lots of fun.
Ambiente ambiente-tapas.co.uk Goodramgate and Fossgate. 01904 689784. One of my favourites. There are two in York, sort of Spain meets Yorkshire.
No 8 Gillygate – no8york.co.uk 01904 653074 Highly rated. I have only eaten lunch and it was delicious.
The Bistro Guy bistroguy.co.uk 01904 652500 Also on Gillygate. Fun, relaxed dining. Great outside space too.
Roots rootsyork.co.uk YO30 7BH This is the latest venture from Tommy Banks of The Black Swan Oldstead. It is a tasting sensation. Lots of different approaches and textures as well as flavours. Quite hard to describe. More than ‘local’ food, they actually grow nearly everything on their own farm. Hence the menu is changed every season.
The Rattle Owl rattle owl.co.uk YO1 6JX Tel 01904 658658 Chef, Jamie Hall is amazing and they feature local produce and cook everything themselves. For lunch they serve a tasting menu. If there are two of us, we usually order one of everything and with a glass of wine each it’s around £55 for two. The tasting menu is actually small plates of the evening menu. The food is modern British. Portion sizes are on the small side for starters and main but they are often very rich. The owner, Clarissa O’Callaghan, explained that they are an independent restaurant and would love their customers to have three courses. So, the smaller portions leave room for dessert, which is quite a generous serving! You probably don’t need to book for lunch but it’s probably essential for dinner. If you like history ask Clarissa to show you the Roman ruins. They were uncovered when they renovated and they are down in the cellar. The Rattle Owl is situated on Micklegate in the centre of York. If you drive, there is on street parking, £2 after 6pm or a multi-storey on Toft Green, the street behind.
Great places to visit for Adults and Children, including some great options for a rainy day…
- The Deep, Hull– www.thedeep.co.uk
- Museums of Hull– www.hullcc.gov.uk
- Flamingo Land– www.flamingoland.co.uk
- Viking Museum, York– www.jorvik-viking-centre.co.uk
- National Railway Museum, York– www.nrm.org.uk
- Dungeons, York– www.the-dungeons.co.uk/york/en/index.htm
- Eden Camp Museum (ww2)– www.edencamp.co.uk
- North Yorkshire Moors Railway– www.nymr.co.uk
- Yorkshire Lavender– www.yorkshirelavender.com
Things to do
The Wolds and North York Moors are teaming with historically important houses, sites and landmarks. From the Romans to the Vikings to the Georgians, this ancient landscape has been shaped and imprinted by those who’ve settled here. If you enjoy a spot of heritage hunting you’ll love…
- Burton Agnes Hall & Gardens– www.burton-agnes.co.uk
- Castle Howard– www.castlehoward.co.uk
- Sledmere House– www.sledmerehouse.com
- Scampston Hall & Walled Garden– www.scampston.co.uk
- York Minster– www.yorkminster.org
- Beverley Minster– www.beverleyminster.org.uk
- Pickering Castle
- Rievaulx Abbey
- Whitby Abbey
The Yorkshire Coast
Yorkshire is blessed with an amazing coastline. Throw the bucket ‘n spade in the boot and tootle along to one of the many lovely locations on Yorkshire’s coast. Here are my favourites…
- Sandsend– a very pretty village with several gorgeous cafes and restaurants, great beach with a little river through it.
- Whitby– a gothic marvel and stunning harbour town, great fish and chips, interesting shops and crazy golf on the promenade.
- Scarborough– a traditional British seaside town with plenty of treats for the kids, pirate mini golf and a Seaworld.
- Bridlington– includes an historic harbour, the old town and several award winning beaches. It also has a little zoo and mini train.
- Flamborough– go bird watching on the RSPB reserve at Bempton Cliffs
- Filey– another great beach and charming Victorian seafront
- Boggle Hole– magical tiny cove with Youth Hostel serving food.
- Robin Hood’s Bay– great beach and very picturesque – my overall favourite.