Having decided on The New Malton as the subject of my latest Dining Out review, I initially assumed that the restaurant itself was new – hence the name.
As it turns out, the premises is actually steeped in history.
In a previous life, as far back as the 18th century, it had been the Whip Inn, and 90 years ago it was called Mrs Blanchard’s Refreshment Rooms.
By anyone’s standards this is a long lineage.
Recently, it was refurbished by the Fitzwilliam Estate and its menu has also been revamped.
Tuesday night in March is not a busy time in the restaurant trade, but at 7pm there were 11 other people dining, and more drinking at the bar.
The ambience is clean and tidy, if a little stark. Plain emulsioned walls add light, but, the stone floor exudes cold and the cheeseplant in the corner looked somewhat miserable.
Fortunately, we were not, mainly because the food on offer was largely worthwhile and the service very good; relaxed yet attentive and we were never kept waiting long for anything.
Of our party of four, two ate starters, two chose desserts and we were all spoilt for choice when it came to selecting from 16 tempting main courses.
If there had been any vegetarians among our number then they could have chose from no fewer than five dishes, and for those with a lesser appetite there are a selection of “lighter” offerings such as fishfinger sandwiches or a charcuterie board of cured meats.
One starter of pigeon breast and blackpudding with shredded apple (£6.25) was delightful, but the Yorkshire pudding with onion gravy (£4.50)) was less impressive.
We sampled four varieties of meat in our next course.
A steak burger (£9.95) was as good a homemade burger as I can remember tasting, the stuffed pork fillet (£12.50) was both moist and flavoursome and sirloin steak (£15.95) arrived cooked as ordered.
These three meats shouted quality and only the fourth dish, a slow cooked lamb shank pie (£13.50), disappointed.
It came encased in dense pastry, with a bone used as a garnish (think Desperate Dan) and would have benefitted from the addition of a bit more meat.
Accompanying chips and vegetables were fresh and tasty.
On to the desserts, and the sticky toffee pudding (£5.25) had an unctious sauce, nicely balanced by honeycomb ice cream, but the sponge was perhaps a little solid.
More successful was a Malteaser cheesecake with Ovaltine milkshake and praline and pecan ice cream (£5.30).
The cake was moreish and its sidekicks were gentle in flavour, the whole dish a nicely balanced and inventive arrangement.
The pudding list is quite short by comparison to the rest of the menu but there is a cheeseboard on offer as well as a selection of local Ryeburn ice creams and sorbets.
The wine list boasts over 30 choices and we enjoyed a Les Tempiers Unoaked Chardonnay with our meal.
The New Malton is hardly a short journey from Scarborough, but the trip is one that I’m glad we made.
Portions are substantial and not overpriced and this eatery is one that I may well re-visit in the future.
Ratings out of 10
Food 8; menue choice 8; service 9; decor 7; ambience 7; overall 8.