Nov 2016 – Sadly our favourite place in York has now closed 😦 It has been sold to Adam and Lovaine Humphrey, who have owned and run the award-winning restaurant, Arras, and the café/bakery Arras Too in Sydney, Australia. We’re wishing them all the best but are really sad to see Le Langhe go.
York’s Le Langhe is an Italian café, deli and restaurant located on Peasholme Green. We had visited the place previously whilst shopping for Christmas gifts and were desperate to go back and try the food.
The deli is situated downstairs and is packed full of wine, oils, pasta, meats and cheese as well as a range of other gifts and tableware. It’s a great place to shop for any food lover.
There’s a café type seating area downstairs at the back and a more formal restaurant area upstairs.
We had booked a table for six on a Friday night – I guess they might not be used to getting bookings of six as they rang me and insisted that two people from our group must have made duplicate bookings. I assured them that we hadn’t and they eventually took my word for it and confirmed the reservation! It was pretty busy on the night we went so I’m not too sure why they were so convinced.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from Le Langhe. I LOVE Italian food so was pretty excited and you only have to glance at the deli counter to know they are serious about authentic, quality ingredients.
However, I had read a couple of bad reviews complaining about the service so was a bit apprehensive.
When we arrived we were shown to our table which was in a hot room upstairs. By the doorway a selection of cheese were laid out on display and in the heat they had filled the whole room with a ripe aroma. I suppose it depends whether you’re a cheese lover as to whether you see this as a good or bad thing!
The area upstairs is nicely decorated and had a relaxed atmosphere with wooden wine crates and candles lining the walls.
First we were given the wine menu which was absolutely huge and includes a range of different wines from the affordable to rare. Luckily, our waiter offered to help us choose and after telling him our price range and preferred characteristics he picked a great one out for us.
Le Langhe’s menu consists of starters, pastas, mains and desserts or, if the whole table agrees, there’s a 7 course tasting menu available for £38 per person. As far as tasting menus go we thought this was great value so decided to give it a go.
Whilst we enjoyed the wine we were brought some cured meat and bread which was a nice touch and not included in the seven courses as far as I could count.
After a while the first course came. Seared tuna steak served very rare with baby artichokes and tapenade. The tuna steak was cooked beautifully and melted in the mouth whilst the artichokes gave a pleasant crunch. It was a great start to the meal.
Next up, was a small piece of rabbit on a lentil stew. The flavours here were really deep and the rabbit was so tender.
I got the feeling that they believe in taking their time with cooking and eating. The tasting menu is definitely a leisurely experience and almost all of the meat served seemed like it had been lovingly slow cooked.
A bright green velouté was up next. Peppery and refreshing flavours of watercress with a nice surprise of creamy ricotta at the bottom.
Then the pasta! A gorgeous tortellini with a meat filling and parmesan shavings. The pasta was perfect with a portion just enough to give you a taste. Many of the flavours in this menu were quite rich so I found the tasting menu portions perfect to keep you wanting more.
A palette cleanser was next out of the kitchen. A bright pink blood orange and prosecco granita I literally could have drunk a bucket of, it was so deliciously sweet and refreshing.
Then a main of coq au vin with chicken falling off the bone in a rich wine sauce and a gorgeous creamy, cheesy potato gratin.
A cheese board came next with six, pretty extreme Italian cheese! I’m not so daring when it comes to cheese but any cheese lover I think would really appreciate the selection available.
Finally to finish, a rich chocolate mousse in a crisp basket with figs. Absolutely divine!
We’d been there over three hours by the time we had finished so if you’re looking for a quick meal I’d say the tasting menu isn’t a great choice. It was also quite heavy on the meat with less fish and vegetables – I’m not sure if there was a vegetarian version?
I did thoroughly enjoy it though and I wouldn’t hesitate to go back. I think the tasting menu was great value for a special treat at £38 and I enjoyed every course. It really was good and not something you could easily cook at home. You could tell that a lot of time, passion and knowledge had gone into this food.
I have to confess I meant to take pictures of each course but every time the next course came out I got so excited I just couldn’t help but dig in before remembering my camera!
As such I only managed to get two pictures! But trust me, the food both looked and tasted beautiful.
As for the service I guess I was lucky as I didn’t have any complaints. Apart from one small hitch where we had to ask for water three times our waiter was really friendly, pleasant and knowledgeable.
A really great night!