February update, because a month is a long time in food and drink...
A month is a long time in the world of food & drink, so we’re going to start giving you monthly round-ups of all the new announcements and updates on all the new bars & restaurants you should be looking forward to.
Local producers are always a welcome addition to Kirkgate Market, especially when what they produce happens to be fresh sourdough, ciabatta, pastries, and cakes every day, using organic ingredients and traditional, time-honoured methods. We’ll see you in the queue first thing Saturday 18 February
We mentioned this back in January when we knew very little about it, since then we’ve chatted with the owner, Skippy, about his new venture - a tequila bar featuring some extremely obscure bottles (not to mention a shelf dedicated to celebrities’ tequila brands competing in an ongoing contest to see whose is most popular...) as well as tacos inspired by his travels around Mexico.
We’ve had the slightest teaser of what to expect in the form of their entry in The Cocktail Experience, which is enough to get us excited for their opening on Friday 10 March.
A big hit with the who’s who of Manchester and Liverpool, and the only nod outside of London in GQ Food & Drink Awards’ Best Bar category, Neighbourhood is eyeing up a plot on Greek Street. Spy the full details here
Mowgli Street Food
Another Manchester and Liverpool favourite that plans on completing the M62 trifecta this year is modern-Indian Mowgli. Rumours have been flying around for ages that they’d be joining the likes of Friends of Ham and Laynes on New Station Street, but nothing’s set in stone just yet.
Serving all kinds of fragrant and spicy authentic dishes from various regions of India, this is one for fans of Bundobust and The Cat’s Pyjamas - our reviewer Deanna wasn’t convinced by Liverpool’s offerings this week, but we’ll reserve judgement for the new opening.
The Domino Club
We teased this one the other week in our 4 Cocktail Openings Stirring feature - since then we’ve been to check out the work in progress and it looks amazing. If classy decor, expertly-made cocktails, rare whiskey sold at cost price, and hot jazz music until the early hours sounds up your alley, you’ll want to get up to The Grand Arcade from mid-March
Headingley’s veteran Italian restaurant is closing its doors! ...For ten days, while it undergoes the biggest makeover in its 41-year history. Closing Tuesday 21 February, the renovation represents a £250k investment in the restaurant's future, which begins when it reopens on Friday 3 March. See our full article with all of the details here.
Grumpy's Bar & Wood Fired Pizza
A little way out of the city, Farsley’s Sunny Bank Mills is becoming one to watch. Mill Kitchen’s brunches, lunches, and locally-sourced deli and mini-market are one of the city’s best kept secrets, and joining them is Grumpy’s Bar & Wood Fired Pizza which...does what it says on the sign, really (except the grumpy part).
Stone baked, wood-fired pizzas, Yorkshire beers, an ace wine selection wine, cheese and charcuterie, all in rustic, historic surroundings. All this can be yours from Friday 24 February, you’d be Dopey not to be excited.
By now you’ll have followed our advice in checking out Masterchef contestant Liz Cottam & Mark Owens (Formerly of Ilkley’s Michelin-starred The Box Tree) pop-up restaurant at The New Ellington, right? Good.
After chatting with Liz a coffee in Laynes, it became clear that their pop-up should be on everybody’s calendar this February, and for the same reason, their upcoming modern British relaxed fine-dining restaurant should be on everybody’s To Do list - just as soon as Liz and Mark have found the right venue...
The Man Behind The Curtain
Yep, the crown jewel in Leeds’ dining crown is upping sticks and sodding off all the way to, er, just downstairs from where it is now. But not before going on a big Hong Kong adventure with all of the staff. Read the full announcement here.
Issho & East 59th
It’s still a couple of months from opening, but we’ve been drip-fed some more information about D&D’s Issho and East 59th concepts this recently. We’ve found out that Issho will be upscale Pan-Asian headed by ex-Zuma & Sexy Fish chef Ben Orpwood, and East 59th is a NY bar and bistro concept named in homage to D&D flagship Guastavino’s in Manhattan.
Who knows what information we’ll have been blessed with by this time next month - stay tuned and we’ll hopefully be able to let you know what type of hand dryers they’ll have in the bogs.
Currently in Manchester and Liverpool (ever get the feeling you might be the side-piece?...) Wagamama founder Alan Yau’s Thai restaurant Busaba announced plans to move into Park Row’s previous Lloyds bank premises about a year ago.
They’ve been dragging their heels since then, but some behind-the-scenes progress has been made. Stay tuned next year and they might have decided what type of hand dryers to have in the bogs, etc...
We discovered That’s Amore when trying to find the best pizza delivery in Leeds (and we probably found it - check out our 5 Best Pizzas in Leeds to see why we love it so much) - little did we know at the time it’s also a proper sit-in restaurant.
The only problem is that it’s brilliant, but there’s only about four seats. That all changes on Monday 20 February though, when they open an expansion which sees the venue double in size - plenty of room for everyone.
51st State by Hedonist Project
Ever wished Leeds had its very own slice of America? Well, no, probably not at the minute. Let me reward that: ever wished Leeds had its own slice of Americana? Much better. That’s what Hedonist Project’s latest incarnation is going to bring to Lower Briggate with a three-month collaboration with Louisville, Kentucky’s legendary Haymarket bourbon bar and bottle shop.
Say goodbye to Hedonist’s wintery Apres Ski bar, and say hello to rare and exotic bourbons, whisky cocktails, and deep-south soul food from Friday 3 March.