Six of the best romantic restaurants in Yorkshire
PUBLISHED: 00:00 29 January 2016 | UPDATED: 19:47 12 February 2016
Tony Greenway searches for some special places for that special occassion
Ah, romance. It’s the crucial ingredient in any long-term relationship, writes Tony Greenway. Take my wife and I for instance, we have enjoyed 20 happy years together. The only problem is we’ve been married for 25 — but let that pass.
If you want to put a bit of romance into your life, you could start by visiting the top five places in Britain with the most romantic names: Lover, a village in Wiltshire; Heart’s Delight in Kent; Cupid’s Hill in Monmouthshire; Sweetheart Abbey in Dumfries and Valentine’s Park in London. Unfathomably, in our own county, Upperthong, Slackbottom and Wetwang didn’t even make it into the top 10.
Even better, you could try a romantic meal at an idyllic Yorkshire restaurant. This edition of Six of the best was especially hard to compile because there are hundreds of candidates, and everyone has their own idea of what ‘romantic’ means. But whatever your idea of romance involves, the fact is that if you want to get all loved up, you really are spoilt for choice in Yorkshire.
Swinton Park, Masham
Swinton Park is properly old school romantic: it is, after all, a castle with a turret and a Rapunzel-like tower. Its restaurant — the opulent Samuel’s which has featured in The Sunday Times and Harden’s Top 100 Restaurants — is open to non-residents, but you’re advised to ring ahead in case it’s fully booked. You could, of course, go the whole hog and book a room to go with your table: in 2014, Trip Advisors Travellers’ Choice named Swinton Park as one of the Top 25 Hotels for Romance in the UK.
The Star Inn in the City, York
The food is fantastic, of course (it’s from Andrew Pern of the Michelin-starred The Star Inn at Harome) but it’s the location that really makes this an insanely romantic choice. Set in the old Engine House overlooking the Ouse, it’s utterly idyllic to eat here and then stroll around Museum Gardens (although do note that the gardens close at 6pm in winter) or down by the riverside.
The Orchid Restaurant, Harrogate
A past winner of the Yorkshire Life Food and Drinks Awards, the Orchid Restaurant at the Studley Hotel features Pan Asian cooking (including dishes from Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Hong Hong and the Philippines) at its finest in gorgeous surroundings (and if you want a room, too, you’ve come to the right place). There’s a fabulous wine list — and the Orchid cocktails in the O Bar are out of this world.
The Millhouse Restaurant and Bar, Skidby, Hull
OK, so the phrase ‘we’re going to Skidby’ doesn’t sound romantic, but it really is. For one thing, there’s a four-sailed windmill near the Millhouse (home to the Museum of East Riding Rural Life), which makes this a rather picturesque spot. The restaurant itself has fine menus — including a gorgeous Valentine’s Day menu (reservation required) — cocktails in the cocktail and piano bar, and lovely gardens. Oh... and did I mention that windmill?
The Box Tree, Ilkley
It’s fairly obvious to single out The Box Tree as a stunning romantic dining destination in Yorkshire. But there you are; it’s so good owners Simon and Rena Gueller make it very difficult for us to do otherwise. The Box Tree, a Michelin-starred hotspot (which famously once employed Marco Pierre White back in the day), excels in attention to detail and (naturally) outstanding food.
Greenhead House, Chapeltown, Sheffield
I’ve never been to Greenhead House Restaurant, but I know a woman who has. Set in a 17th century cottage, it’s very dinky and extremely quaint, with a small lounge area with an open fire and a dining room that seats just 30. ‘It’s like sitting in a doll’s house,’ says my smitten source. ‘And the food is amazing.’
Where is your favourite restaurant for a romantic meal? Leave a comment below or send us a tweet at @Yorkshire_Life and use the #loveyorkshire hashtag.