Recently I celebrated a birthday, and as I know no better way to celebrate than with good food, it was time for me to pick out a restaurant to visit with James. We’d both been to 31 Castlegate before, and although we usually like to try somewhere new, we had been impressed on our previous visit. Of course, the fact that I received my starter and main course for free on account of it being my birthday didn’t go amiss either…
31 Castlegate has friendly staff, a cosy, homely atmosphere and delicious food. All this makes it a great place to go. Both times I have been it has been quite quiet, but this gives it an intimate feel and means that you can enjoy a proper conversation, rather than competing against the background noise of other rowdy diners. The menu is reasonably priced and the set menu is fantastic – a real bargain given the quality of the food.
We ordered from the set menu and to start my boyfriend and I enjoyed a Garlic mushroom tart with smoked Wensleydale and rocket salad and a Smoked haddock and salmon fish cake with sweet chilli dip. Both starters were thoroughly enjoyable and worked well as appetizers – in some places starters are just too rich and heavy and end up ruining the rest of the meal. For my main course I had Chicken breast stuffed with brie and sun dried tomatoes with sautéed potatoes, green beans and a red wine jus, whilst my boyfriend had Pan fried seabass fillet with crushed new potatoes, spinach and white wine cream. He particularly enjoyed the white wine cream, and we overheard other diners making similar comments. My chicken was succulent and went well with the red wine jus. I would have preferred to have had a little more brie and sundried tomato stuffing, but then perhaps I would not have had room for dessert!
For dessert, my boyfriend had the apple crumble, whilst I went all out and slightly off piste as I ordered a dessert from the main menu instead. A chocolate lover, I just couldn’t resist the assiette of chocolate (pictured above). This beautiful mini chocolate feast consisted of chocolate fondant, a white chocolate cup filled with salted caramel mousse, a mini sundae and vanilla ice cream. It was rich and indulgent, but it was also delicious and can be thoroughly recommended. Perfect for sharing, but also manageable for one.
We washed down the meal with a bottle of the house Merlot. Like our previous visit, we left 31 Castlegate feeling thoroughly satisfied and eager to recommend to friends. If you live in the York area, I would recommend signing up for the birthday club to access the same birthday discount I did, and special offers during the month of your anniversary too.