Sunday, 10 December 2017

Cosy up at the Adelphi with their new winter menu.

The Adelphi is one of Leeds' most attractive looking pubs, in my opinion. It has retained so much of its original Victorian features and character. I could sit in this pub all day supping on a pint (or a few) admiring its small intricacies. Too many of Leeds' pubs have been stripped of their former glory in the name of refurbishment, fashion or improvements.

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Trinity Kitchen - The Latest Street Food Offerings!

Trinity Kitchen's new line up sees a few new faces to Leeds and a mix up of Sela Bar's little red bus's menu. 

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Cantina at The Old Red Bus Station - Leeds - Vegan Heaven

Further up the lane from the sleek, high end, recently created and rejuvenated from what was before Victoria Gate you'll find a side of Leeds city centre that has been neglected over the past few years. I don't remember this side of town in what you may call its 'hay day' but I do remember it being slightly less dilapidated than it has been in previous times. There used to be a cinema on this street, the ABC, which has since been knocked to the ground. It was always for me, the lesser option compared to the Odeon (now sports direct) but it made the area visited. During my teenage years I was introduced to an all-you-cat-eat Chinese restaurant, which had a fire in the kitchen and then had to close. 

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Coffee Collective and Meyers Bageri - Copenhagen

I’ve included both The Coffee Collective and Meyers Bageri together in this one post, although it could be argued that they deserve their own separate posts. My reasons for doing so is largely due to only having visited Copenhagen once, and the time that I did, I enjoyed them both together.

I’ll start with a little information about Meyers Bageri, the place to go for the best cinnamon buns (kanelsunrrer) in town (I am reliably informed). Meyers is owned by Claus Meyer, a chef, entrepreneur, baker and confectioner. In his bakery on Jaegersborrade you can buy organic bread, freshly ground flour, cakes and most importantly (for me) cinnamon buns. The bakery is tiny and can only accommodate 5 people inside at a time, pre-working hours and weekends are their busiest times, so if you’re a tourist try taking breakfast a little later.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Cafe Vide Hus - Copenhagen

Café Vide Hus was another place I found via Instagram. When I saw a picture of their avocado on toast with immaculate latte art I had to go check it out.

As it turns out Café Vide Hus isn’t too far away from the centre of town, it’s also opposite Rosenborg Castle which was one of the places on our ‘to do’ list. It’s a rather unassuming café in appearance and further research suggests it’s one of the hidden gems of Copenhagen.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

108 - Copenhagen

The chap and I both picked a restaurant each to book an evening meal for our minibreak to Copenhagen. 108 appealed to D because it wasn’t just another tasting menu as is often the case in higher end restaurants, which meant he could avoid the fish dishes if he so desired.

108 is located near to what was once Noma, dubbed the greatest restaurant in the world for a number of years (it’s now closed but set to reopen in a couple of years in a new location), it’s also Noma’s informal (and cheaper) sibling. The dining room is relaxed, with stylish stripped back interiors but with attention to small details, such as the cutlery wallet, reminding you that you’re in somewhere a little more special than the local caff.

108 is well and truly part of the New Nordic Cuisine movement focusing on fresh, local and natural produce. 108 is slightly different from others in the movement in that they ferment the produce they harvest, extending its lifespan slightly.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Bollyfood - Copenhagen

On the eve of my birthday we decided to head in to the meatpacking district of Copenhagen, which you’ll find in Vesterbro not too far away from the central station and Tivoli gardens.

Not many places appeared to be open on a Tuesday evening and so after looking in a few windows we decided to settle on Bollyfood. If you haven’t guessed already Bollyfood is an Indian (and Pakistani) restaurant that also does takeaway.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Relae - Copenhagen

We visited Relae on our final night of the trip, which also happened to be my 30th birthday. It was recommend to me by a few people when I asked on Twitter about the must go places in Copenhagen.

The restaurant was set up by two Noma alumni and is situated in the trendy Norrebro area of the city on Jaegersborggade.

As Relae is a Michelin Starred restaurant we thought we’d save this treat for my birthday. Relae is also ranked as the 39th best restaurant in the world and the world’s most sustainable restaurant. It’s this pursuit of sustainability that drives the food focus at Relae.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Ipsen & Co - Copenhagen

Whenever I go abroad I’m always in search of good coffee and usually good breakfast to go with said coffee. There is a ridiculous amount of choice when it comes to these two things in Copenhagen, I was finding it hard to create a shortlist. In the end my choices came down to Instagram, what others had said and shown on their accounts of places I could see advertised themselves as selling independent/craft coffee and breakfast.

Ipsen & Co wasn’t at the top of my list until I saw the check-ins and the pictures of fabulous looking coffees, breakfasts and as cosy looking nook. It didn’t disappoint. After a short underground journey and a slight walk from our hotel we arrived early to a small coffee shop on the corner of Gammel Kongevej in Frederiksberg. The location is known for being a little  more middle class than other hipster areas of the city (such as Norrebro). A lot of families settle here with it being a little quieter and you’ll notice a more domestic side to the city.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Baest - The World's 13th Best Pizza - Copenhagen

Baest has been ranked the 13th best pizza place, which is quite an accolade when you think about how many pizza places there are in the world, I can think of at least 10 in Leeds city centre just off of the top of my head. So what makes Baest so good? Why is some of the best pizza in the world found in Denmark?

First all Baest use only organic meats and produce, the flour is local and is gently fermented and then cooked in a wood-fired oven that they had specially made for them in Naples. It’s there for you to see in the restaurant and the charcuterie is made onsite above the restaurant, the mozzarella is also made using local organic milk which is stretched by hand several times a day. The meat they use on their pizzas and offer as charcuterie is crafted from Danish pigs (and we all know how good Danish bacon is), they think they are some of the best pigs in Europe.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Thai Aroy Dee - Leeds

Thai Aroy Dee is a well-loved Thai Restaurant amongst the ‘foodies’ in Leeds. Being a resident food blogger of six years it’s shameful that I hadn’t been until this year. It wasn’t for the want of trying however. I had tried to visit Thai Aroy Dee in their previous, smaller, location just down the road. I had tried calling for bookings but was either told they were fully booked or there was no answer to my calls. I tried turning up, mid-week even, to be turned away. It was proving to be a fruitless task.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Esquires - Bradford City Centre

I first came across Esquires in New Zealand, way back in 2009, at the time you had to pay for Wi-Fi everywhere but in Esquires you could get unlimited Wi-Fi if you bought a drink. A good attraction for travellers who need to Skype family members or post envious pictures on Facebook.

At the tender age of 22 I wasn’t yet a coffee drinker and so the furthest my order went was for a cup of tea. I used to alternate between Esquires and Starbucks for my tea and Wi-Fi needs.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Gorilla - Manchester

I always struggle for places to eat in Manchester. It’s either because there is just SO much choice, or that there isn’t anything that inspires me because I can’t find it at home in Leeds. Perhaps it’s a combination of both.

Saturday, 23 September 2017

North Tea Power - Manchester

I love eating out for breakfast. I think the reason why is because you will normally find me eating breakfast at home in my pjs or at my desk at work whilst I check on last night’s emails, therefore, it feels like a bit of a luxury. The only problem is, I struggle to get out of the house and to cafes or restaurants in time for breakfast. This is why brunch is an excellent concept for me, it means I can take my time and still enjoy breakfast out, albeit just a bit later than I would eat breakfast at home.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

The Shambles Kitchen - York

I’ve probably said this before, but trying to find lunch in York can be a minefield. There are so many chains and tourist traps that can easily lure you in. Trying to find the gems can be quite difficult if you haven’t been given any tips.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Cameron's Tea Room and Farm Shop (Foyers, Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands)

Everything in The Highlands seems so far spread out compared to life in Leeds, or Yorkshire in fact. When something is ‘only’ an hour away it doesn’t seem too bad a drive. After a rather exhausting day travelling around the Isle of Skye we wanted to do a little less travelling, we had visited the local waterfall, visited the neighbouring town and then found ourselves a little stuck with what else we could do. With it only being around 1pm we decided that an hour’s drive from our location in Drumndrochit to The Falls of Foyer wasn’t too bad.

Friday, 8 September 2017

Taste Of India - Isle of Skye (Scottish Highlands, Inner Hebrides)

Dining out at an Indian Restaurant in Scotland, or more specifically the Isle of Skye, doesn’t sound like the most typical of meals to be had whilst touring The Highlands, I admit. However, after a day of driving around the island, getting engaged, wild water swimming (read: putting our swimming suits on and freezing our t*ts off in the fairy pools) we were knackered. It was pushing 6pm by the time we had left the fairy pools and we needed to eat and embark on the two hour drive back to our log cabin. When we arrived on Skye, just after we had made it across the Skye Bridge, I had noticed an Indian restaurant and joked to the chap that we should stop and go for dinner. This became a reality when it fast became the easiest option with it being on the route back.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Dakota Deluxe - Leeds

When it comes to hotels Leeds isn’t short of them, however, in the city centre the chains dominate. You’ll find hotels that you will find in larger cities in the UK, such as The Hilton, The Radisson, The Marriot, Travelodge and Etap for those on a smaller budget. The city was lacking in boutique, luxury hotels, until Dakota Deluxe arrived spring 2017.

Dakota Deluxe is a brand of hotels that comes from the same company that brought Malmaison to the UK, which at the time was the first hotel brand in the UK for 30 years. Dakota is relatively small in their offering so far, with only three other branches, one in Edinburgh and two in Glasgow.

The ‘Deluxe’, which is what we have in Leeds, is a more refined version than its airport counterparts. The brand hopes to open more Deluxe hotels in city centres throughout the UK, I feel proud that they chose Leeds as one of their first.

Skye Pie Cafe - Isle of Skye (Scottish Highlands and Inner Hebrides)

The Isle of Skye is possibly one of the most picturesque places I have ever been to in my life. It makes me swell with pride that this beautiful isle is a part of our country and my Scottish heritage. Skye, in recent years, has also become a very popular place to live in the Highlands and Hebrides. The Skye bridge has brought ease of access to the mainland and gives its occupants that feeling of being remote, but not too remote. With such beautiful scenery, a growing population and access to fresh fish of the surrounding seas, Skye has also scene an influx of fine dining restaurants.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Fiddlers - Drumnadrochit (Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands)

The Fiddlers in Drumnadrochit, just by Loch Ness, is a popular option for tourists. It’s on the main street, next to a farm shop, opposite the post office and just down the road from one of the Nessy Exhibitions. During the day they have a street food van outside and this stays open until the evening in case you didn’t book ahead and find yourself with no where to eat… great if the weather is nice, not so great if it’s raining.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Pizza Fella - Vicar Lane, Leeds

In a part of the city that I was sure was due to demolished to make way for ‘phase two’ of Victoria Gate, I see new restaurants and bars popping up. Perhaps temporary leases or best laid plans now falling through, I’m not sure.

Pizza Fella has opened up in what was some time ago a very seedy looking sex shop. They have immigrated from their street food van, an old Citroën van, to somewhere a little more stationery. They’ve gone for the ‘stripped back’ look inside, with exposed ceilings and pipes, a sign that this is only a temporary lease? Or are they just following interior fashions? The small details they have added make it feel a little more homely, such as the hanging planters, candles and freshly cut flowers on each table.

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Coach House Cafe - Tomich (Scottish Highlands) and Plodda Falls

The Coach House Café, as its name suggests, is an old coach house turned café in the Victorian Conservation Village of Tomich in the Highlands of Scotland. We happened upon this quaint little village out of luck as we passed through when going to see Plodda Falls.

The village was created by the Tweedmouth family, who built a large manor house (now in a ruined stated), and was to serve the Guisachan Estate. The estate covered around 1600 acres and much of the forna and flowers that were planted by the estate still remain.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

The Village Inn - Arrochar (Loch Lomond & The Trossachs, Scottish Highlands)

To say that I love Scotland would be an understatement, and I didn’t actually take a trip north of the border until I was 23. I had just returned from New Zealand after an unsuccessful working holiday (it was the recession and all I could get in the way of work was working for accommodation, unfortunately my savings only stretched so far before I had to come home), it was mid-winter when I took the trip and there was snow on the ground as well as the mountains. We took a short car ride from where I was staying near Glasgow (Kilmarnock on the West Coast) to the lower parts of the highlands, Loch Lomond and the Trussachs. I remember exclaiming at this time that I had travelled all the way to New Zealand to see sights, that in fact, were on my doorstep.

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Baltzersen's - Harrogate

Ever since visiting Copenhagen in January this year I have been eager to find a ‘real’ Danish cinnamon bun in England. The types you find in Tesco, Sainsbury’s etc. are flat and a bit too flaky pastry to be anything like the real deal, the types you get in cans that you roll out don’t really meet expectations either. There seem to be a few in more Southern areas of the country but up North I was really struggling, that was until I started following Baltzersen’s Instagram account.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Afternoon Tea at Creams British Luxury - Leeds

The Core in Leeds City Centre is an odd shopping centre, it underwent a refurb some years ago chucking out most of their tenants with exception to HMV. Since then I’m told it pushed up rates and it appears to be struggling to fill units. I can recall the days when the glass lift used to go up through the centre, with a small café at the bottom and an overpriced food hall at the top. With Trinity Leeds opening and it seemingly being a more attractive option for stores The Core has slowly been generating another food hall (the previous food hall pre-refurb was the top of the building and was overpriced and a little bit lacklustre), forgive me if I’m wrong, but it seemed to start with the opening of Burger King. Then one by one some more chains have entered the ring and started to open in the once redundant units.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Richard III Hotel - Middleham

Those who know me (or follow me on Instagram) will know that I love a good castle, thankfully I live in Yorkshire and there are a plethora of castles around to visit. I have a Pinterest board set up just for the castles that I want to visit. Middleham Castle had been on my list for some time, so when the chap needed to dust of his car and stretch it’s legs a little I suggested that we take a drive up to Middleham.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

The Doubletree Hotel (by Hilton) - Leeds City Centre

Despite visiting a Hilton hotel many times I have never actually stayed the night. From what I can gather, the Doubletree brand of the Hilton is a more upmarket, less corporate and more personal (warm) than the run of the mill Hilton hotels. They focus on comfort over convenience and try to make their hotels look attractive and high end.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

The Lock Kitchen and Bar - Doubletree Hilton - Leeds

Hotel restaurants can be hit and miss, some do it very well, some do it very badly and some play it safe. The Lock at The Hilton Doubletree in Leeds is, in my opinion, the latter.

The Doubletree in Leeds benefits from a very advantageous spot in the city, it has great views over the city from its rooms and it is situated beside the canal. It is fair to say it’s in one of the quieter parts of the city, if you stay at Park Plaza or The Marriott you won’t find a setting quite as tranquil. Don’t get me wrong in the evenings The Granary Wharf area livens up, and with lots of bars and restaurants around it can make for a rather good night, with slightly less of the crowds. The Lock has a relatively big outdoor area (for the city centre) which is nestled next to, you guessed it, the canal locks. This attracts guests of the hotel and locals alike.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Tambourine Cafe - Saltaire

Tambourine café is a new independent coffee shop in Saltaire. It serves artisan coffee from local suppliers and roasters in Leeds and Saltaire. On the day I visited I had a cup of North Star’s House blend, served to me perfectly by the hosts and with the all-important Instagram worthy latte art.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Tharavadu Express Lunch - Leeds

I’ve written about Tharavadu before, I’ve been many many times since my first visit and I’ve been a few times for lunch too! Once of the advantages of going to Tharavadu is that you can book through their online system and as a bonus it’s not a bad price, especially for the amount of food you get.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

The North Star Coffee Shop - Leeds Dock

North Star Coffee has been on the coffee scene for around 4 years now, you may have noticed their bags of coffee in your local coffee-shop, and you may well have even have drank a cup. North Star was the first independent roastery based in Leeds. They work with suppliers all over the world to source the best beans for your cuppa. They use the right type of beans, Arabica, and have strict ethical guidelines about how and who they import from. Here’s an extract from their website:

“Quality and ethics are at the heart of everything we do, we work with both our origin and wholesale partners to continue a positive cycle of re-investment, innovation and sustainability in an effort to guarantee the supply of outstanding coffee for many years to come.”

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Sky Lounge (Doubletree Hilton) Brunch – Leeds

The Sky Lounge in Leeds is a notorious hotspot for cocktails on a summer’s evening. It has a stunning uninterrupted view over the south of Leeds and is considered the place to go when you’re dressed up to the nines. Admittedly, I had never visited Sky Lounge on an evening nor during the day, I’ve seen plenty of pictures of the Sky Line and I’ve heard the cocktails were rather good. Whilst staying at the Hilton I decided to pop upstairs to see what all the fuss was about before we headed out in to town to dance away the night.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Trinity Kitchen - July/August 2017 Street Food Line Up

The new Trinity Kitchen line up sees the return of a few loved street vans and the introduction of some new faces to Leeds. It never fails to amaze me how many street food vendors we have in the UK now!

So what can you expect from the July-August rotation?

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Prashad - Drighlington

I knew I’d love Prashad before I had even stepped foot in their restaurant in Drighlinton. I’ve visited their love child, Bundobust, (the other parent being the CAMRA pub The Sparrow in Bradford) on many occasions. It’s fair to say Bundobust is one of my favourite places to go in Leeds’ City Centre. I also own both of the Prashad cook books. D and I love cooking and eating the recipes in these books and have our firm favourites, I’m looking forward to book number three (hint hint).

Prashad was formerly in the heart of Bradford, but after the fame of ‘Gordon Ramsay’s Best British Restaurant’ series, they found themselves needing a much larger place to house their new found fan club. Drighlington isn’t the first place you’d think of for a night out, aside from Prashad there doesn’t seem to be much else there, except from a couple of pubs and a main road (that all the boy racers love to drive down with their large exhausts blaring out between Bradford and Leeds). I guess that’s why it’s taken me so long to visit, which is silly really as it’s only 25 minutes in the car from North Leeds.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Plum & Partridge - Husthwaite, North Yorkshire

Husthwaite is a small village on the outskirts of The North Yorkshire Moors, it's a historic village with buildings dating from the 12th century, it's no wonder that it's a conservation area. Over the years the building which houses the Plum & Partridge has undergone many a refurb, with many a new owner and many a different theme. It's gone from pub, to tapas restaurant, to pub again with others in between. At the end of March 2017 it opened this time as The Plum & Partridge, a small guest house, pub and restaurant.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

The Ground House - Stirling (Scotland)

Stirling is a beautiful city. It's full of old buildings, cobbled streets, castles, monuments and you can see The Highlands on the horizon when you climb up high. It's a small city in comparison to some of the cities in England and definitely in comparison to Glasgow and Edinburgh. Stirling was the capital city of Scotland way way back in the past, it's often referred to as the ancient capital of Scotland, which will give you an idea of how long ago that was. Since then in terms of culinary offerings Glasgow and Edinburgh have far surpassed as they have done in size and population. Stirling seems to have quite a few tearooms and the odd chain restaurant thrown in there. I feel that I was lucky on my last visit to Scotland to happen upon a Henderson's Bistro, which was literally opposite to where we had parked. This time I struggled to find somewhere that grabbed my fancy for lunch. Due to it's historical connections it has a lot of tourists (namely Chinese/Japanese/Americans) and I was reluctant to fall in to a tourist trap. Local blogs, websites and (in desperation) Tripadvisor was of no use and so I would have to use the old method of happening upon a place to eat as I passed on the street. Shock. Horror. 

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Broomhall Castle - Menstrie (near Stirling, Scotland)

I wanted to book a castle for D's 30th birthday last year, but unfortunately all the castles I'd looked at were hitting the £250 mark per night. This was a little more than I could budget at the time as we were in the process of buying our first house and everything else to put in it too.To make up for a 30th birthday of unpacking boxes I decided that D's 31st was going to be extra special and I planned a trip away to Scotland. I've been to The Highlands before but D hasn't and I just knew he would love it as much as I do. To make sure we saw as much as Scotland as possible we decided to stay in a few locations, it would also break up the long drive from Leeds. On the way back I was debating whether to stay in Edinburgh or Glasgow. I pondered briefly over Stirling. When D saw a picture of the Wallace Monument (he loves Braveheart) it became set in stone that we would stay in Stirling on the way home. 

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Sociable Folk and The Good Luck Club - Wellington Place, Leeds

If you’re lucky enough to work in Wellington Place then Sociable Folk has probably already been your go to coffee hit for some time. An upcoming area that is undergoing vast (and quick) development it is forming in to quite the forward thinking business district. By this I refer to the grassed areas, deck chairs, the outside seating, the community services, yoga, knitting club and much more. If I was going to set up a business or move my business this would be one of the prime areas I’d look at.

Sociable Folk is a coffee house come café and is currently only open Monday to Friday, unfortunately weekenders haven’t yet found a reason to visit Wellington Place but once they do I expect it will be a nice place for a pre-town pit stop especially if you’re a resident of City Island.

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Trinity Kitchen - May/June 2017 Street Food Line Up

This months’ rotation in Trinity Kitchen has to be one of their best line ups yet. Of course this is just my opinion and there are many of my favourites which are not present but there isn’t one place that I would shy away from or not be tempted by in this line up.

So what have you got to look forward to this time?

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Chef Zak at Cafe Lulu - Birkenshaw

Birkenshaw. It’s not exactly the place I would associate with gourmet supper clubs and taster menus but last Saturday evening that is where I found myself. In Birkenshaw, in a small café that was open  after hours specifically for a guest chef to come in and serve a gourmet six course Caribbean themed taster menu.

The café in question is Café Lulu, a breakfast and lunch place for locals that are housed in the basement underneath an Indian restaurant. It doesn’t exactly scream gourmet dining experience but I’m interested in unique and different experiences. When we arrived I was and stepped in to their basement and was pleasantly surprised. What greeted me was a very romantic setting of vaulted ceilings, exposed brick, twinkling lights and candle light. Never judge a book by its cover and all that.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Super Lunch Menu at Jamie's Italian - Leeds

I worked out the other day that I haven’t been to Jamie’s Italian for around 7 years. Those 7 years have flown by as I recall when it first opened, the long queues that went down the side of the building on Park Row for people to get in and the hubbub around it opening. It seems a lifetime away and I doubt that a Jamie’s Italian would cause the same excitement 7 years on. So why was it so popular back then? Was Jamie Oliver at the height of his popularity or was there just not that many exciting food places to go in Leeds? I don’t recall Carluccio’s getting the same treatment when they opened on Greek Street (recently closed).

Whatever the reason Jamie’s is still popular with Leeds Folk, perhaps not queueing down Park Row popular but popular enough that you need to book a table on a Friday night or face waiting in the bar for a little while.

Although Jamie’s remains a Firm favourite with weekenders Jamie’s is trying to bring in the mid-weekers with their launch of the new Super Lunch Menu. If you’re on a working lunch you want something speedy, not too heavy and not too pricey. Jamie’s offers 2 courses for £11.95 and three for £13.95, which incidentally is the same deal as Bill’s. So if you fancy something a little lighter (as Bill’s lay on the calories in most of their dishes) or perhaps something a bit more culinary specific i.e. Italian then Jamie’s is a good alternative.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Edison's Coffee - Sheffield

Sheffield is often a city that is overlooked, I feel. It’s strong industrial (steel) heritage has shaped it and nurtured it in to the city it is today but if you’re not from(or live in/near) Sheffield would you choose to go out of your way to eat or drink here?

Speaking to a few friends and colleagues alike they would say no, what does Sheffield have to offer? A few see Sheffield as a student town and with two universities it certainly does have a healthy student population. A few years ago (again my thoughts) Sheffield city centre went through a period of neglect after Meadowhall was built and all focus and footfall was redirected that way. When I was deciding on which university to go, I visited Sheffield and found the city centre very quiet and not a lot of buzz around it, my other comparison being Manchester however.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Le Pain Quotidien - Victoria Gate Leeds

Le Pain Quotidien has restaurants all round the world and in England they have a few restaurants down south. I would deem them fairly well established but they didn’t come to my attention until they landed in Leeds, more specifically Victoria Gate.

Le Pain Quotidien, or 'the daily bread' in English is a Belgian restaurant built on the foundations of a good bakery and serves only organic produce. In Victoria Gate the bakery sits on the ground floor with the restaurant above, for those unaware of its existence I can see how it would be very easy to skip by not realising that upstairs is a beautiful light dining room which is a perfect place to enjoy, breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner or possibly a couple glasses of (organic) wine and a charcuterie board.

I urge you to not just skip it by. Le Pain Quotidien is well worth a stop and a look in, let them tempt you upstairs, take a few minutes or hours out of your day to relax and unwind in their charmingly decorated rooms with antique mirrors, ornate flooring and balconies.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Opposite Cafe - Chapel Allerton Leeds

I’ve been to Opposite Café on multiple occasions but never got round to actually blogging about it, which is a massive error on my part because they are wonderful. This post in turn is not about a single experience here but instead a collection of my experiences here.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Giraffe - Manchester Airport Terminal One

Everybody loves going on holiday and if you’re going abroad your holiday usually starts at the airport. Whether it be 4am in the morning or 1pm in the afternoon most people are relaxing their belts and getting in to the holiday spirit.

I’m not one for ‘getting on’ the beer (or bottle of wine as I’ve seen before) at 4am in the morning but I am partial to an airport breakfast/brunch. Leeds airport is wank for this. Sorry for the rather uncouth language, but it sums it up quite perfectly to me. The breakfast options are limited and those that are available are expensive and quite frankly a rip off for the amount of food they serve you.

Manchester is a different story, depending on your terminal. Terminal one in Manchester airport is the closest us Northerners are going to get to Heathrow (which blows your mind if you’ve only ever been to Leeds airport). There are more shops that just Boots the Chemist and there are more food options than Burger King and the Airport’s own attempts at restauranteering. You won’t find many independents but you will find Giraffe.

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Yo! Sushi - New Menu

Yo! Sushi isn't just about raw fish wrapped in rice and seaweed, if you had asked me a few years ago I would have thought it was. Others still think it is.

So what else does Yo! Sushi have to offer? Firstly there are plenty of vegetarian options, in the traditional sushi sense i.e. pieces of vegetable wrapped in rice and seaweed and in small hot dishes such as noodles. Not only are there hot small vegetarian dishes but there are also meat and fish dishes that come hot too, such as tempura prawns, yaki soba and chicken katsu curry. On top of all this you can get larger bowls of ramen and bento boxes for lunch.

I wrote about Yo! Sushi when it first opened in Trinity Leeds, it was my first experience of Yo! Sushi but it wasn't my last. As with most chain restaurants I had found myself in a rut, I knew what I liked and so I kept ordering the same time and time again. When Yo! Sushi invited me to come and try out their new menu it felt like a good opportunity to try and get me out my rut.

Monday, 1 May 2017

Pride and Produce - Garforth, Leeds

I grew up in Garforth (or G-Town as we called it as 'cool' teens) and to be honest there was never anything that exciting happening, not in food terms anyway. The most popular places to eat in Garforth include an Italian restaurant, the Aagrah Indian restaurant and a Miller and Carter Steakhouse/Pub, which I think may give you some insight in to its culinary offerings.

When I started this blog (in 2011) I was still living Garforth and I tried to review some of the places on offer as objectively as I could but I was never going to find the same standards of restaurants (cafes/coffee etc) as what I could in the city centre. However, when I moved away (typically) things began to change. Garforth got it's first latte art in the form of Cielo, the French bakery started to become more well known, the Italian expanded (not sure if this contributed but worth noting) and one of the many bakeries was replaced with a deli. A deli! How exotic for humble Garforth!

Pride and Produce moved in to town and brought with it avocado on toast, American style pancakes, locally sourced products and an evening bistro. There may be some in town who look on at it wearily and if you are a Garforthite and are still doing this, I urge you not to. Surprise yourself.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Revolucion De Cuba - Bottomless Brunch - Leeds

Prior to visiting Revolucion De Cuba (RDC) I was a bottomless brunch virgin. I've seen it gradually creep up the country from London Town and watched it grow in popularity in the North with more and more establishments jumping on the bandwaggon. When it comes to all you can eat I've never been a fan, mainly because I struggle to get my money's worth. I'm simply not as greedy as my belly thinks I am.

As brunch is almost certainly my favourite meal (it's a shame that it has to be restricted to weekends only, damn you full time job) it was almost a certified bet that I was going to eventually be bottomless brunching. 

Saturday, 15 April 2017

200 Degrees - Barista School - Leeds

If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter you may have seen my pitiful attempts at Latte Art, they are hardly masterpieces and more often than not replicate the sort of view you would see on a psychologists ink blot test.

Admittedly I have attended a barista class before now at Layne’s but Latte Art was a separate class to be followed by the initial introduction, so I struggled on. Always eager to more and thrilled to know that 200 Degrees' barista class included an introduction to Latte Art I gladly accepted an invitation to try them out. There are some overlaps between the introductory classes from Laynes and 200 Degrees however the latter structure their courses a little differently. There is still an introduction on bean-to-cup with additional classes marketed at intermediate and advanced. Despite not going in to as much details as my first class with Laynes I can see the benefit of structuring it in this way, if you're a complete novice and know zero zilch about coffee 200 degrees' introductory course would aimed at the correct level for you.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Norse - Harrogate

Norse has been on my ever growing list of places to visit for sometime, unfortunately I rarely make it to Harrogate and it's a shame because there are some great places to visit in this old Yorkshire Spa Town. As with many tourist hub places there are a lot of chains, something which the local residents have been commenting on recently, however if you do your research you'll find some great independents. To take some of the effort out of that research I present to you Norse.

Norse is very on-trend with their concept, I along with many of the masses are fully embracing Nordic and Scandinavian fashion. This embrace extends past food to my house and my clothing. No I'm not just shopping at Ikea because I've only recently bought a house and therefore too skint to buy from anywhere else (although this is partly the case), I like the combination of simple designs with vintage or 'retro' and this also fits in well with our own style and tastes. Anyway, this isn't a blog about home design it's about food.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Cocktails In The City 2017 - Leeds

Cocktails in the City are in its 5th year of making Leeds blind drunk with their fantastic event. If after all these years you’re still none-the-wiser as to what it is all about then let me tell you: CITC is an annual event that runs around April time on a Thursday (because Thursday is the new Friday) and Friday (because everyone loves Friday) evening. A whole host of national and local bars participate and set up micro-bars in a set location. The location chosen for Leeds is the Town Hall, an iconic building in Leeds and a fabulous events space.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Ricci's Tapas & Cicchetti - Leeds

Ricci’s opened around a similar time that other Tapas restaurants in Leeds open such as Iberica and La Rambla. They’re all located on the same street (ish) in Leeds city centre and they’re all vying for your attention. Iberica already has a reputation in London and Manchester and so Leeds was a natural progression for them, La Rambla is the first of its kind therefore it had a bit of work to do on building its reputation. Ricci’s brings with it the reputation it has founded in Halifax. I don’t know many people who go out in to Halifax for a night out or chose it as an evening meal destination, there are a couple of people however who I know who have been (due to having friends or family in Halifax) who sing it’s praises. So although small Ricci’s does have a reputation to uphold that should bring in some new clientele in Leeds on the back of this.