All pictures courtesy of Jessica Holmes
On Sunday I was lucky enough to tag along with my photographer-extraordinaire gal pal Jess for a meal that she was treated to by Hotel Indigo’s No.88 Walmgate restaurant on the edge of the city. All I knew (from a quick Google) was that the restaurant focuses on Yorkshire inspired food made with local ingredients where possible, so I went in with an open mind and a rumbling tummy.
The hotel could be easily missed, tucked away towards the end of Walmgate. After a walk down the street, our nose-buds had already been scintillated with the smells from a plethora of delightful restaurants, so I was happy to reach the smart, stylish but down to earth restaurant. Nicely decorated with rustic wooden tables and modern tiled pillars, we sat at a bright window seat where we could watch the world go by.
The menu had three well-rounded options for each course, and me and Jess both opted for the crispy hen’s egg to start (see picture above), which came with asparagus and lemon butter. The crispy egg broke apart to reveal a deliciously runny yolk and the asparagus and sauce came together to form a perfectly light starter.
For my main I went for the salmon (you might be noticing a trend, here…), which came with crab mayo, truffle mash and broccoli – and, oh my, so yummy. I sometimes find a salmon fillet can be a little much on its own, but the crab mayo was so fresh and bright tasting that it really balanced out the flavours, and the small dollop of creamy mash was just enough that I felt satisfied but not too full (and I ate every bite!).
Jess is a veggie so chose the pearl barley risotto, which got its incredible colour from wild garlic and asparagus. I had a couple of bites and it was a creamy, garlicky wonderland in my mouth – Jess actually struggled to finish as it was so rich (hence me scarfing some of her meal)!
After a little gap to let our appetites return a bit we finished off with dessert, which I think we both agreed ended up being the stand-out course. I had a rhubarb posset topped with crunchy shortbread pieces and a basil sauce; this was my first posset and it will not be my last, as it was so satisfyingly thick and creamy without being overwhelmingly rich, and the basil was the perfect accompaniment. Jess had a classic, choosing warm apple tart with vanilla ice cream. She loved it and I can confirm, after a tiny bite, that it was everything an apple dessert should be – warm, comforting with just the right amount of zing.
I also have to give a general mention to the presentation of the food at No.88 – as Jess’ fabulous pictures show, every dish was presented beautifully. My favourite touch was the leafy garnish on the starters and mains; not only were they delicious, but they gave me that wonderful feeling that we were eating fresh food, perfect from Spring.
We came away feeling satisfied and like we’d just eaten something a little special. It’s not always easy to find a restaurant where you can experience a perfectly balanced three course meal and not come away feeling like you’re bursting out of your clothes, but Hotel Indigo achieved it! I’d definitely recommend taking a stroll down Walmgate next time you fancy eating some truly delicious, refined food in relaxed and friendly surroundings.
For more stunning pictures of this meal and some of the beautiful nature in and around York, check out the amazing Jessica Holmes on Instagram!