Leeds Restaurants and Dining
(Leeds, West Yorkshire, England, UK)
The dining scene in Leeds has certainly undergone quite a transformation in recent years, with many old buildings and warehouses being converted into trendy brasseries and restaurants. Those who favour fine dining will find that a number of restaurants even boast prestigious Michelin stars, although decent food is readily available at decent prices.
The city of Leeds is regarded as one of the best places for dining in the north of England and the city has recently expanded its variety of cuisine. Gourmet bistros and public houses are especially popular at lunchtimes, along with local bakeries, cafes and traditional fish and chip shops.
Plenty of quality restaurants and eateries live in the city centre, with good choices around the Leeds Shopping Plaza on the Albion Arcade. At the Victoria Quarter Shopping Centre, the Harvey Nichols department store is where you will find the acclaimed Fourth Floor Café, where mouthwatering dining is accompanied by superb rooftop views. Popular dishes here include beef and oxtail pie, bubble and squeak rostis, chargrilled chicken Caesar salad, mackerel fillets with soy and ginger, sea bass and clams, and venison burgers.
Leeds rivals nearby Manchester with its number of late-opening, continental-style cafés and bars, which are situated throughout the city centre, where they often boast classical-Victorian architecture. Those on an evening out generally start at the pubs and wine bars, before moving on to the clubs, which at the weekend, often stay open until as late (or early) as 05:00 in the morning.
Leeds offers a variety of breakfast options, with Caffe Nero on Albion Place opening at 07:00 Monday to Saturday, and from 09:00 on Sundays. Breakfast choices here include porridge, bacon and tomato muffins, pastries and sausage paninis.
Located on the Foundry Square is the Engine House Cafe, where full English 'fry ups' are served between 08:00 and 11:00 in a characterful Grade-II listed building. Also available here at breakfast time are scrambled eggs with smoked salmon, bacon sandwiches, porridge with honey, and fruit muesli.
Lunch in Leeds is probably the most popular meal of the day and many local restaurants, brasseries, cafés and bars are to hand, meeting the needs of hungry locals and tourists. Pubs are generally a safe and affordable bet, as are fish and chips shops, which suit those looking for an impromptu spot of al fresco dining, on a park bench.
Interestingly, Leeds is particularly well-known for being the home of fish and chips, as it was here that the original Harry Ramsden's fish and chip shop opened many years ago. Harry Ramsden's fish and chips are now famous all over the world and have been franchised as far away as Hong Kong.
Leeds has a large number of fast-food restaurants, with many familiar names being represented within the city. These include a number of popular eateries based around the Briggate area, such as McDonald's, Nando's, Subway and nearby Domino's Pizza. Also in this area are both the Queens Arcade and Thorntons Arcade, where a coffee and sandwich can be grabbed if you are in a hurry.
Leeds restaurants tend to open for dinner at around 18:00 and stay open until gone 23:00, or later at the weekend. For dining in Leeds city centre, choose between the Blackhouse on East Parade, Jamie's Italian on Park Row, Pizza Express on Park Square West and the Thai Edge Restaurant on Calverley Street. However, this really is just a taster of what is now on offer in the city.