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Meet York's top foodies....


For insider tips from our local foodie heroes, check out the following interviews with York restaurateurs, Food Festival Organisers and Chocolate Makers.

Michael Hjort : the Food Festival Organiser

Meet the Food Festival Organiser:

What is your signature dish?

I love the simplicity of our shoulder of lamb dish at the Walmgate Ale House; Yorkshire lamb rolled, slow-cooked, and topped with a herb breadcrumb crust. It the sort of elegant domestic cookery with simple presentation and great flavours

What ingredient couldn’t you do your job without?

Chilli pepper. It's not that I eat or use them all the time, but their ability to revive you when the palate is jaded and the way they lift otherwise bland ingredients makes them indispensable.

Where do you begin when organising when organising the York Food & Drink Festival?

By looking for partners. It’s about engaging as many people as possible across the city. At the end of the festival we launch a theme for the following year, as a way of encouraging new participation and novel ideas.

What makes York food so special?

York, like Lyon in France, is surrounded by geographical diversity: the moors and dales, the coast, the vale of York. The position of the city as the traditional market town of Yorkshire gives us glorious diverse produce. Fish, game, great cheese, upland lamb, fresh asparagus and soft fruit; it’s all to be had from the region. Great food will always start with good produce.

Do you have any top tips for those who want to be chef in York?

Enjoy eating, enjoy cooking whether for you friends and family or for a restaurant. It’s never been difficult to make a start in the industry. However, to be a good chef you need to enjoy what you make. It’s not just a job: taste your food, listen to your customers.

Michael Hjort : the Food Festival Organiser

Tommy Banks, Head Chef, Black Swan Oldstead

Meet Britain's Youngest Michelin-starred Chef

What makes the Black Swan Oldstead a unique place to visit?

The Black Swan is, at heart, a family business in a quiet corner of North Yorkshire. However we encompass a wider team of knowledgable, dedicated staff, producing and serving diverse, seasonal dishes which combine traditional and modern techniques. We are largely self-sufficient, priding ourselves on delivering authentic, award winning food, with an ability to harvest and rear our produce just a few paces away from the dining table.

Tommy Banks, Head Chef, Black Swan Oldstead

Andrew Pern the Michelin-starred Chef

Meet the Michelin-starred Chef:

Do you have a favourite dish on the menu at The Star Inn The City?

There are a lot of great dishes on the menu and one of my current favourites is the Taste of Yorkshire Pork which includes three different cuts of pork cooked in three completely different ways. Very nice!

Andrew Pern at the Star Inn the City

Ray Cardy: the Chocolate Maker

Meet the Chocolate Maker:

What does York’s link with chocolate mean to you?

Being a chocolatier in a city with such a rich chocolate heritage is immensely satisfying; being York’s longest practising chocolatier is even more so.

Ray Cardy at Chocolate Heaven

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Did you know?

...the Star Inn the City serves you fresh bread in a flat cap?

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