Photo: Jason Lozier

Photo: Jason Lozier

Restaurant: Melton’s
Address: 7 Scarcroft Road
Prices: £9 – £20 for main
Review: Becky Young
Rating: ****

When I say I have eaten at Melton’s, everyone seems to automatically assume I am talking about its sister restaurant Melton’s Too in Walmgate. I too was guilty of this same mistake until I was taken to the original Melton’s. Now, it is all I can talk about.

Melton’s is a small, family run restaurant and renowned for using local suppliers. It has been mentioned in numerous publications such as The Daily Telegraph, the AA food guide and was given the ‘best home cooking’ award by BBC’s Olive magazine. Furthermore, it is a winner of a 2AA rosette. Incidentally, only 10% of the restaurants nationwide are of a standard that is worthy of one rosette or more.

After arriving in the pouring rain, I was hastened into the restaurant by my dinner partner. The moment we entered, I felt incredibly relaxed and couldn’t care less that my shoes were soaking and my hair was damp. The restaurant itself had a lovely calming atmosphere. The warm décor and the soft lighting gave the feeling that you could sit for hours and completely escape the trials and tribulations of university. We were led to a secluded table in the window of the restaurant where our waiter introduced himself, proceeded to take my coat and give us menus. Shortly afterwards we were brought a selection of breads and an amuse-bouche of parsnip soup, presented in a tiny coffee cup which was a wonderful touch; I was immediately smitten with the place.

The wine menu is extensive with choices ranging in price. You can tell considerable time and effort has been put into choosing this menu to match the foods. After choosing our main course, we decided to choose the recommended wine, a 2006 Chablis at £29.

I work backwards in a restaurant and so will start with our dessert, my favourite course of any meal. Each sounded delectable and I couldn’t help but feel incredibly greedy as I wanted them all, so much so that I considered ordering two puddings before common sense hit. I settled for the hazelnut and apricot parfait, on the premise that my partner would have the warm ginger rhubarb terrine with custard which was recommended by Dylan, our waiter, and is a speciality at Melton’s.

Both were absolutely fantastic. The parfait was served with a hot chocolate sauce which, together with the strong flavours of the apricot and the bits of hazelnut, was delectable. However, if I was to recommend one pudding off the menu (I have since returned several times and tried nearly all of them) it would be the terrain; it was one of the most interesting desserts I have had in a long while and one which I was admittedly apprehensive about at first. The rhubarb terrine is accompanied by custard, which is somehow in small balls of jelly, and then garnished with iced sticks of rhubarb; delicious.

The mains were just as exquisitely cooked and presented as the desserts. Unfortunately, there was less variety and we both went for the apple orchard chicken which was so well cooked that you forgot it was ‘just chicken.’ For once, I wanted to truly take my time over this course as it was so scrumptious.

Starters are usually my least favourite part of my meal. However, once I saw scallops on the menu my mind was made up.

Starters are usually my least favourite part of my meal. However, once I saw scallops on the menu my mind was made up – we were going to have every course. My partner ordered the buckwheat blini, which was incredibly tasty although not as fantastic as the scallops.

Melton’s truly is a wonderful restaurant. The food is excellent and the staff are perfectly attentive. The restaurant offers private dining facilities, which I have already tried and tested when I organised a dinner for fourteen people and as you can probably guess, the evening was wonderful. We were given the upstairs room, which is decorated in sumptuous shades of soft peach and the restaurant even created a special menu just for us. The location, just a couple of minutes from town, makes you feel that you have escaped the drama of university, even if only for the night.

The bill was just under £55 for both of us, including the wine at full price; it is an incredibly fantastic deal and one I will no doubt take full advantage of.

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