The concept Bistro Guy is an independent eatery on Gillygate, a thriving community of shops, cafes and restaurants just outside the city walls. It’s a relaxed kind of joint, offering everything from morning coffee and cake to three course bistro suppers. Food is honest, straightforward and – where possible – locally sourced. If the sun’s shining, nab a spot in the tea garden that’s bordered by the city walls; kids can spend hours waving at tourists teetering past while you enjoy an al fresco pot of tea or glass of wine.
The lowdown Thanks to bad planning and even worse weather, we turned up at Bistro Guy with two incredibly energetic children who looked as though they wouldn’t sit down for a minute, let alone through a whole Sunday lunch. So with trepidation and crossed fingers we took our seats in the calm dining room. It turns out we needn’t have worried. Staff were quick to welcome us and accommodate our buggy (the baby had thoughtfully fallen asleep) and give the kids their own menus. They had plenty of choice, including their favourite dish of the moment, chicken goujons. Jamie Oliver would approve: this was top notch, homecooked grub that they demolished instantly along with handcut chips (but not, admittedly, the accompanying salad). We grown-ups really enjoyed the Sunday roast: the carnivore devoured his roast beef and trimmings in no time, barely pausing to come up for air, and the veggie was delighted with the tasty halloumi dish. Best of all, the kids had a lovely time and declared the sticky toffee pudding the best thing they’d ever eaten.
And to top it off, their meals were free with our Sunday roasts (this applies to kids under 6 years old).
Why it’s family-friendly You can tell that the owners of Bistro Guy are parents. Although it feels like a sophisticated adult environment, the staff welcome children and know how to accommodate them. Our kids were brought drinks in plastic cups without us asking and they had plenty of choice of good food from their own menu. High chairs are available and there’s baby changing too.
The verdict When we stepped in off the street, rain-soaked and with two bouncing kids in tow, we predicted a Sunday lunch disaster. But a couple of hours later we left refreshed, happy and having enjoyed one of our most relaxed meals out together in a long time.
Bistro Guy Café Bar, 40 Gillygate, York YO31 7EQ. Monday-Saturday 9am to 5pm; Sunday 10am to 4pm (roast 12pm to 3pm)
This review is taken from the May/June 2015 issue of the Little Vikings magazine.