Pro vs punter
Does a regular diner reach the same conclusion about a restaurant as a food pro, who may get special treatment if recognised?* Laura Rowe and O reader Liam Mills compare notes on chef Tommy Banks’s latest venture
Laura Rowe and Liam Mills compare notes on chef Tommy Banks’s new York restaurant
After exclusively announcing his intentions to open a second restaurant on the O magazine podcast last summer, chef Tommy Banks finally opened the door of Roots in York in September. Based in the centre of the city, the restaurant aims to bring the same Banks family farm-to-fork philosophy as their first, the Michelin-starred The Black Swan in Oldstead.
Reimagining its former pub shell, Roots sees a calm bar upstairs where guests can choose from the likes of house-made spirits, liqueurs and infusions – from fennel pollen ‘sambuca’ to lemon verbena ‘limoncello’ – and cocktails made from ingredients foraged and harvested from the family farm in Oldstead.
Downstairs, there’s a laidback vibe, with stripped wooden floors and tables, and botanical drawings on the walls, and a menu that takes inspiration from Tommy’s debut cookery book (also called Roots). Expect the likes of crapaudine beetroot slow cooked in beef fat (a signature of The Black Swan) and white chocolate with douglas fir and lemon verbena. rootsyork.com