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Banyan, Ilkley
Graham Clark, Features Writer
Recently opened in Ilkley on the site of a former pizza restaurant. To many in the town, Banyan might be a new name but with bars in Leeds and Harrogate amongst other places in Yorkshire the brand is known by many.

Although they serve food and have an extensive menu where the food is ordered and served at the table, it feels like a bar first with the food an addition.

Inside Banyan
We visited on a late Sunday afternoon. It was busy with a relaxed atmosphere with a mixture of young families, couples and friends meeting up.

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There was a Sunday roast on offer where 2 courses were £15.99. This was chalked up on a blackboard. Instead we went for something off the main menu.

The menu is a mixture of sandwiches, mains such as Steak and ale pie, Sea Bass, Oriental Duck and burgers which range in price from £9.95 upwards.

My starter of Deep Fried Brie Wedges tasted more like Camembert than Brie, but as I am a cheese lover it didn't matter as they were very tasty.

Bang Bang Chicken skewers
My partner went for the Bang Bang Chicken Skewers served with Satay sauce and caramelised peanuts. When they arrived it looked like they had forgotten the glazing on them, however they were hot and said to be good.

Black and Blue burger
My main of Black and Blue Burger was a quality burger which tasted like a proper burger with plenty of blue cheese, pulled beef brisket and BBQ sauce. The house fries were not bad either.

My partner decided upon the Thai Green Curry served with Chicken (you could have had it served with sea bass or a vegetarian option).

Thai curry with chicken
Whilst the curry was good the big pieces of chicken tasted bland and it looked like the chicken had just been dumped on top and not cooked with the curry itself. The chicken was not too warm either.

They call them Decadent Desserts and they are not wrong. Probably the best part of the meal as the desserts were excellent.

Mixed Berry cheesecake
My Mixed Berry Cheesecake tasted sublime whilst my partner's Rhubarb Crumble Tart served with Creme anglaise was hot and very sweet.

Rhubarb Crumble tart
Service by the young staff was friendly if not a little disorganised at times, but it is early days yet.

There are 2 television screens showing music videos intertwined with showings of the various menu items. Older customers might find the music too loud, but as I like my music it didn't deter from the experience.

At the moment it seems that customers are visiting for the curiosity value, but I would say that the core of its business is the 25-35 age group.

It will be a success in Ilkley because there is nothing as trendy as that in the town. With a huge range of cocktails it will appeal to a different clientele from that of the daytime.

Worth checking out but choose your food wisely.

Banyan Ilkley,
1-2 Station Plaza,
Brook Street,
Ilkley, LS29 8DE
Telephone 01943 608278
www.arcinspirations.com

Banyan, Ilkley, 21st November 2017, 18:09 PM