First look: Inside York’s bright new Rehab bar – with a surprise in the basement coming soon

Vicky Lu Evans inside her bar Rehab. Photographs: Richard McDougall
12 Sep 2019 @ 6.57 pm
| Food & drink

What was a gloomy spot on Piccadilly has been transformed into a bright and airy bar and café by one of York’s top hospitality teams.

For 15 years Vicky Lu Evans and her husband Simon have run The Habit on Goodramgate. But their second bar is quite different.

Rehab Piccadilly is found in the former premises of Veeno wine bar and opened this afternoon (Thursday, 12 September). By unblocking one of the windows and giving it a modern makeover they have turned it into a funky and friendly new place to eat and drink.

Fun and colourful artwork is on the walls
Rehab was given its striking name by one of the team, Natalia.

“We were looking for a name to link to the Habit,” Vicky told YorkMix.

“When one of our staff Natalia immediately said Rehab. It seemed to fit the bill immediately with the addition of Piccadilly.”

Social and fun

The interior of the Rehab Piccadilly
In addition to the bar there will be two escape rooms in the basement – one with a Harry Potter-type theme, and another based around Guy Fawkes.

Due to contractual problems these are not ready yet. They are now likely to open in the New Year.

But the bar is ready and looking good. The one room is filled with chunky, pine-topped furniture – wood reclaimed from distelleries and mills in Scotland.

There’s one large central table encouraging people to mix and talk – just as they do in her home country of China, Vicky said.

“I always wanted a big, communal dining table. It should help create a lively atmosphere.”

On one wall is some colourful artwork showing York under attack from dinosaurs and aliens.

Food and drink

Dine big
During the day, Rehab Piccadilly will be a great place to grab a coffee or a bite to eat.

The menu features a lot of vegan and veggie food prepared on the premises from local ingredients. Typical dishes include:

  • roasted vine tomato and basil soup with sourdough bread (£5)
  • spinach, red pepper and Yorkshire Fettle quiche served withs salad (£8)
  • honey roast ham and free range egg open sandwich (£7)
  • vegan cauliflower mac and cheese served with watercress and rocket (£12).

Rehab will serve up cocktails, a selection of European lagers, beers from three handpumps and a growing range of wines and spirits.

It will open from 11am-11pm Sunday-Thursday, and 11am-12.30am Friday and Saturday.