Updated: Feb 20, 2020
The Local’s Guide to York Nightlife
The historic city might be best known for its city walls and majestic cathedral, but don’t underestimate York nightlife. If you love a good night out, York can tick that box for you too.
By day you can gaze in awe at the stained-glass windows of York Minster, scare yourself silly in the York Dungeons and amble along the cobbled streets. By night you will find that you’re spoiled for choice with an abundance of restaurants, pubs and bars. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s go eat, drink and be merry.
Six of the best – where to go for a great night out in York
Not sure where to go? Allow us to help you out. From the traditional to the modern, and the downright quirky, York has it all.
1. The Hilt – Throw like a Viking eat like a king
57 Goodramgate, York, YO1 7FX. England
Start your evening at The Hilt, just 4 minutes from York Minster. It’s fair to say that this place isn’t your average venue. Before you dine on a delectable feast of Nordic bites (the Valhalla meatballs are way too good to share by the way) and desserts, you get to work up an appetite with a spot of axe throwing.
Expert coaches are on hand to help you warm up and practise. With their help you will get to grips with single and two-handed throwing. Before you know it, you will be hurling your chopper towards the split-wood targets like a pro!
2. The Botanist – Seriously stylish cocktails
15-19 Stonegate, York, Y01 8ZW
Craft beers, tasty ales, and let us not forget the champagne darling - The Botanist caters for the most discerning of palates. However, the star of the show has to be the botanical cocktails. Created before your eyes, you will be mesmerised by the mixology process as well as the amazing taste! If you book a cocktail masterclass you can even learn how to mix the perfect tipple yourself.
Sip and savour as you listen to live music, catch up with your nearest and dearest and soak up the laid-back ambience. If you’re feeling peckish why not compliment your beverages with the tasty fare on offer? The pick and mix deli board is not to be missed.
3. Manahatta – Bringing a taste of New York to York
3 Little Stonegate, York, Y01 8AX If you’re looking for a taste of the big apple, Manhatta is right up your street. This hip eatery has a wide and varied menu. There’s brunch for the early birds with buttermilk pancakes, smashed avocado topped with poached egg and even a good old fry up all making an appearance on the menu.
If you prefer to visit later you will find sharers and delectable mains, such as The Godfather (a fully-loaded gourmet burger). There’s plenty of yummy desserts too.
Drinks wise you can enjoy 2-4-1 cocktail deals daily. Be warned though, there are over thirty to choose from (including low-alcohol and non-alcoholic varieties), so you might be perusing the menu for some time!
4. Fancy Hanks – Good mood US soul food
39 Goodramgate, York YO1 7LS
Hidden away in the historic Minster Quarter, Fancy Hanks brings hungry diners good mood US soul food. Inspired by the street food of the deep South, the menu is plentiful - this is the place to go to grab a full-on friends and family feast.
There are private dining areas available and large groups can even book the entire place just for themselves.
Mouths are guaranteed to water as fried chicken, jambalaya, mac and cheese and green bean casserole are delivered to your table, Sharing may be caring, but make sure you tuck in before everyone else scoffs it down!
You can also choose from a variety of appetising drinks including cocktails and beer. We should also point out that the milkshakes to die for (try the Mississippi Mud Pie or Salted Caramel Pretzel for a real taste sensation).
5. Fossgate Social – Small but perfectly formed.
25 Fossgate, York, Y01 9TA
They say the best things come in small packages and the Fossgate Social is no exception. This licensed coffee bar is nestled on a popular street and in a prime spot, but inside the ambience is nothing short of relaxed.
The dimly lit room and chilled-out indie vibe encourages you to plop down in a comfy chair and relax. Enjoy a coffee, a snack or your favourite tipple (there’s a well-stocked bar so choice is not an issue here). If the weather is kind you can head outside and take a pew on the outdoor terrace.
6. Jalou – Delicious cocktails, top tunes and a bustling atmosphere
Micklegate, York, Y01, YO1
Step this way all those who have a thing for freshly made cocktails, great music and a buzzing ambience – Jalou could be the perfect place for you. The setting is pretty special too - a grade II listed church with gothic features – it certainly has the wow factor.
You’ll find guest DJs spinning a tune or two and a huge drinks menu that offers up just about any cocktail your taste buds happen to have a hankering for. You can even book a cocktail class where a mixologist will teach you everything you need to know to shake, stir and sip in style. Cheers!
Are you Ready to Experience York Nightlife at Its Best?
Why choose just one place for a great night out? Make the most of your night out - York has so much to offer after all! Pull off those slippers, switch off that box set, round up your nearest and dearest and go and experience all that this vibrant city has to offer.
Get the party well and truly started in a unique way by throwing an axe or too at The Hilt, then move onto a couple of great bars. We’ve given you a few ideas with a rundown of some of the best hotspots in the city – but go and explore for yourself. York really is your oyster!
Looking for things to do in York during the day? Click that link.