A TOP York chef is set to open a brand new restaurant in North Yorkshire.

Tom Heywood took on the role of head chef at the Rattle Owl in Micklegate back in 2019, building up a strong reputation there over the past four years.

Now, with his partner, Laurissa Cook, he is set to open Pignut, a restaurant set to reimagine fine dining in the heart of Helmsley in North Yorkshire.

York Press: Diners will be served tasting menusDiners will be served tasting menus (Image: Mollie Rose Photography)

The couple met while working at the Rattle Owl - where Laurisa was restaurant manager - and it has been their dream for some time to run their own restaurant.

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Opening on June 14 at 12, Bridge Street, they say Pignut will have a commitment to sustainability and innovation at its core using locally sourced produce to create expertly crafted dishes, set in a relaxed, inviting atmosphere.

"It has been a dream of mine since I first started being a chef to open my own place," said Tom.

"It has always been at the back of my mind to do it and now it's actually happening it's extremely exciting. I means I can do the food I want to do for people.

"It's been quite a big learning curve, but we both feel so free now to do our own thing and can't wait to welcome people to our restaurant."

York Press: The compact restaurant seats 14The compact restaurant seats 14 (Image: Mollie Rose Photography)

The couple are moving from York to Helmsley and Tom ahead of the opening day.

Tom said the name Pignut came about as he does a lot of foraging for his menus and the pignut is a native foraged nut which grows around Helmsley and can be used on salads.

The restaurant will have 14 covers with Tom doing the cooking, assisted by another chef part-time and Laurissa front of house.

York Press: Laurissa in the restaurantLaurissa in the restaurant (Image: Mollie Rose Photography)

The upstairs of the building has been turned into a lounge area where people can enjoy drinks and snacks.

In the restaurant downstairs diners will be served an eight-course tasting menu at dinner time and four courses for lunch.

All the food is being sourced from within a 20 mile radius with the menu changing to incorporate seasonal produce.

York Press: Food is locally sourced Food is locally sourced (Image: Mollie Rose Photography)

Opening hours will be Wednesday and Thursday dinner from 6pm; Friday and Saturday lunch from 12.30pm and dinner from 6pm with the restaurant closed on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

As The Press previously reported last month, chef Adam Jackson has joined the Rattle Owl in Micklegate heading up the tasting menu restaurant there as well as their new Tansy Beetle Bar offering.

To book at Pignut go to info@restaurantpignut.co.uk