The King and the Queen Consort have sampled gin, macarons, gelato and banana bread as they paid a visit to “Yorkshire’s food capital”.
The royals visited North Yorkshire market town and foodie destination Malton on Wednesday in Camilla’s first engagement since her new title of Queen Camilla was unveiled on invitations for the King’s coronation.
Charles and Camilla toured six local food and drink producers at Talbot Yard Food Court and enjoyed free samples at four.
They started at the Rare Bird Distillery, where Charles joked: “Nothing more fun than a gin distillery,” as he entered.
The King spoke to the owners, retired fireman Matt Stewart and his partner Elizabeth Riding, before trying some of their award-winning London Dry Gin.
Charles said: “I’ll just have a tiny sip,” but declined some of the vanilla-flavoured gin, quipping: “It’s not quite the right time of day.”
The royals then visited Florian Poirot Master Patissier, where Camilla tasted a lemon bergamot macaron, saying it was “tres bien”.
The Queen Consort later chose a sample of mango gelato at the next stop, Groovy Moo ice cream parlour, describing it as “lovely”.
Owner Michelle Walker, 60, was the first to open a business at the food court in 2015, after closing her previous ice cream business in Bridlington to care for her husband Sean, who died from a brain tumour in 2014.
Mrs Walker said: “You couldn’t ask for a more genuine couple, there were no airs and graces, they were just like a normal couple that come here on a Wednesday. It was like we’d known them for years.
“At times I actually forgot who they were.
“I know people have been saying ‘will he struggle as King’ but I think he’ll walk it.”
The royal couple then shared a piece of banana bread at Bluebird Bakery.
Charles and Camilla also visited butchers Food 2 Remember and Roost Coffee & Roastery before leaving the converted coaching yard to the sounds of a local brass band.
They went on a walkabout in Malton town centre, where hundreds lined the streets to greet the royal visitors, despite the rain.
The pair shook hands with well-wishers, with Camilla asking some of the children if they were “enjoying their holiday”.
The King then met representatives from a number of local charities at York House.