Van Zeller appeared on my wishlist shortly after they won ‘Overall Winner’ in the Oliver Awards. Until then, I have to admit they hadn’t really appeared on my radar. Anyway, we booked a table for early September at lunchtime (we really needn’t have booked – we were the only ones for a while).
The inside was smaller than I’d thought it would be, but it wasn’t too crammed that you were too close to the next table.
We had a choice of three menus to order from. I dont understand why restaurants feel the need to bombard you with so many menus? Why not just have a single one, especially when the menus look like they’re printed in house.
I ordered from the a la carte menu.
PHOTO: Bread and amuse bouche
PHOTO: Smoked Eel & Pea Mousse Terrine £9.50
“Smoked Eel & Pea Mousse Terrine – Serrano Ham, Breakfast Radishes, Pickled Shallots and Potato Crisp“
This was delicious. I’d eaten eel a few months back and quite enjoyed it so I was eager to try it again. It was light, and each mouthful was full of fresh tasting ingredients.
PHOTO: Pork Loin and Slow Cooked Belly £22.75
“Pork Loin and Slow Cooked Belly - Doreens Black Pudding, Crackling, White Bean Puree, Spring Onions, Baby Purple and Yellow Carrots“
The pork was sous-vided (cooked in a water bath) so was pink in the middle. This, disturbed a nearby female diner who complained to her partner that the pork wasn’t cooked. The pork was perfect! However the crackling along the top wasn’t that great.
PHOTO: Summer Berries £8.95
“Summer Berries – Strawberry Jelly, Vanilla Cream, White Chocolate Praline, Raspberry Sorbet“
This, I thought was really well presented. It was a lovely refreshing, light dessert. It was a fantastic end to a great meal.
We didn’t stay for coffee. The bill was pricey as we’d ordered from the A la carte menu, but the food was perfectly presented and cooked. I wasn’t disappointed having driven an hour for my lunch!
8 Montpellier Street, Harrogate, HG1 2TQ
For more details, visit thefoodplace.co.uk Independent restaurant guide