“There’s nothing brassy about Melton’s”, chimes a fan of this old charmer, which has been pleasing York’s foodies for more than two decades. The place is still “‘as cute as a button” with quaintly dated murals on the walls, rather cramped tables, well-worn soft furnishings and a bevy of affectionate staff with “quiet charisma”. Michael Hjort’s food is original, fairly priced and dependant on proper local sourcing across the board. Menus change regularly, but intriguing possibilities might include carpaccio of venison with hazelnuts and ginger vinaigrette, fillet of hake with wild garlic, butterbeans and seasonal vegetable broth or rump and tongue of rose veal with pasta, pine-nut purée, peas, broad beans and gremolata. An excellent British and Irish cheeseboard is always at hand, and desserts could feature almond cake with apricot and York honey ice cream. Early-evening deals and modestly marked-up wines are in tune with Melton’s admirable ethos.