Hull is redefining itself as a key city of the North and over the next two years Yorkshire’s ‘Maritime City’ will see a multi-million pound transformation of its historic seafaring attractions in a major regeneration project. Building on its success as 2017 City of Culture, Hull is also making a name for itself for its food and drink scene, with new restaurants, gourmet street food, gin distilleries and microbreweries joining an already well-established Ale Trail.
So if you want to spend 48-hours, getting a taste of Hull, here’s how…
Get your bearings. Join us for a guided walk through Hull’s rich history. Find out more about its links with Robinson Crusoe, what on earth the Land of Green Ginger is all about, and how the city played a role in the abolition of slavery. Visit some of the city’s most historic pubs to discover England’s smallest window and raise a glass in an alehouse said to be where the English Civil War began in 1642. If that’s not enough, there’s a bustling marina and waterside Fruit Market area that has recently been transformed into a modern, vibrant cultural quarter with bars, restaurants, distilleries and art galleries.
Explore a world of street food. Nestled in the heart of Hull’s Old Town, Trinity Market has operated for over 100 years. Revitalised with a £3m refurbishment in 2017, it has gone from strength to strength, and is now home to a host of street food traders. Visit in the summer and the people behind Hull’s award-winning grassroots music festival Humber Street Sesh (each August) bring weekly live music nights. The market sits in the shadow of Hull Minster and next to Trinity Square, a stunning public space featuring eight water features. http://bit.ly/2InayGy
Forget ice cream. Pizza cone anyone? Among Trinity Market’s gourmet street food specialists, Cone Queen is changing the way people eat pizza… by wrapping traditional topping flavours – and new ones – in a cone. It’s winning high praise, including the Street Food prize for Yorkshire and Humber at the 2019 National Market Traders Federation Young Trader of the Year. http://bit.ly/2TifkJq
Tuck into dinner – with a ‘Perfect 10’. Former Beautiful South guitarist Dave Rotheray is aiming to give his home city of Hull a foodie claim to fame – by opening the first vegan tap-room in the country. Bringing something new to Hull, The Purple Robot, which opened in August 2019, not only offers a completely vegan menu, but the beers are vegan too. Food at the Humber Street venue takes its inspiration from around the globe, serving up classics with a contemporary twist. www.thepurplerobot.co.uk
Get hands on with a gin & chocolate class. Hotham’s Gin, based in Hepworth Arcade – where Mr Marks and Mr Spencer opened one of their first penny bazaars – is a micro-distillery selling award-winning handcrafted gins. As well as a Gin School it has joined with Hull chocolate maker Cocoa Chocolatier to run a new chocolate-making class, learning how to create 24 gin truffles to take home. http://bit.ly/2W4dGz6
Overnight accommodation. The Hideout. Opened in 2017, Hideout is an independent, contemporary boutique apartment hotel offering 15 self-catering apartments in the heart of the city centre. Each features a designer bathroom, an integrated open-plan living area and fully equipped kitchen, all with luxury designer furniture. www.hideouthotel.co.uk
Explore Hull’s modern, vibrant and unique cultural quarter. For more of a flavour of the city, head to the regenerated Fruit Market area, where disused warehouses and cobbled streets have been transformed into Hull’s cultural quarter, offering an array of restaurants and cafes. Don’t miss Humber Street Gallery, a contemporary art space housed in a former fruit warehouse, including a rooftop bar with views across Hull Marina. www.humberstreetgallery.co.uk
Trawler-strength gin? Hull’s first gin distillery and bar is celebrating the city’s rich maritime heritage by launching a “trawler-strength” spirit with a unique new flavour. Trawler Gin packs a punch at 57% strength and is distilled in the heart of Hull’s waterfront district in a traditional copper still. The team behind Humber Street Distillery Co. – a stylish bar and working distillery – has created the Trawler Gin to support a £27m ‘Maritime City’ scheme. http://bit.ly/2IsC5qj
Have lunch by shooting the bull – but not literally! ‘Shoot The Bull’ built its reputation by taking its ‘Gastro Pop-up’ on the road, but has been so successful that is has opened its own pub, The Old House, in Hull’s oldest domestic building at Scale Lane. Chef Chris Harrison worked in award winning and Michelin starred restaurants across the country, including Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck. ‘Shoot The Bull’ also offers its award-winning gourmet street food in Trinity Market. https://www.shootthebull.co.uk)
In with the old… While new ventures are adding extra flavours to Hull’s food and drink scene, there’s still plenty of room for tradition. So, how about deep-fried mashed potato with sage and onion stuffing in batter? Since the 1800s the Hull Pattie, soft in the centre and crunchy around the edges, has been a city favourite. Each chippy has its own recipe, try Bob Carvers, serving up fish and chips (and patties, of course) for more than 130 years in the city.
More to explore… Discover the Museums Quarter (High Street, Hull HU1 1PS) all open 10am to 5pm:
Hull & East Riding Museum
Visit The Deep. Perhaps Hull’s most iconic building and one of the UK’s most spectacular aquariums, this award-winning attraction is home to over 3,500 fish, sharks, rays and penguins. Travel through the story of the world’s oceans from warm tropical lagoons to the icy cold Antarctic seas. The Deep also offers an unusual dining experience too. On select evenings The Two Rivers Restaurant offers a chance to dine whilst surrounded by some of Europe’s best aquatic displays. www.thedeep.co.uk
Hull City Centre
Shoot the Bull, credit James-Mulkeen