Leeds-List: The Best & Most Insightful Guide to Leeds

Tasting Menus, Cocktail Making Kits & Theatre Workshops, 24 Things To Do While You’re Holed Up At Home

· Joseph Sheerin · Culture

Enjoy Leeds at its finest without leaving your front door.

Cocktails

Just because you can’t leave the house, doesn’t mean you can’t experience the best of Leeds.

Want to liven up your days stuck at home? You can still enjoy the very best of Leeds without leaving the house. From incredible productions you can stream on your devices to escape room experiences, craft workshops and even food and drink tastings, here’s how you can enjoy all that Leeds has to offer while in lockdown.

Tasting Menus from The Swine That Dines

The Swine That Dines Roots to Shoots vegetarian dish

Credit: Thom Archer

#SwineAtHome was so popular in the previous lockdowns, they’re keeping it going. For £25 per person, you can get 3 courses of utter deliciousness, fully cooked and ready to simply reheat at home. The menus change on a weekly basis, but you can look forward to the likes of potted brisket with piccalilli to start, followed by chicken with truffle and spinach in a marsala sauce. Finish with desserts like rhubarb and custard gateau bisque for dessert – what a treat!

You can order online for collection on Fridays and Saturdays. It costs £25 per person.

Yoga Classes with Yoga Kula

Yoga

Want to get your yoga fix? Yoga Kula are live streaming classes from their studio to your home. One of their qualified yoga instructors will lead you through a series of poses, depending on the type of class you’re doing. They have live streams for ashtanga, vinyasa flow, hatha, yin, flow motion and even pregnancy. Better still, these classes have been designed to be suitable for all levels, so even if you haven’t tried it before, now’s the perfect opportunity.

You can book your yoga classes online. Prices start from £7.50 per class.

Beer Tasting with North Brewing Co.

North Brewing Co. Tap Room

Credit: John Slemensek

You can sample the delicious wares of North Brewing Co. and check out their new Springwell HQ all in one go with their virtual beer tour and tastings. You can join up to 10 family and friends on a private video call with a member of North’s brewing team. Before it starts, everyone will have received a mystery box of tap-fresh craft beer from the brewery and you’ll get to learn about how they’re made as you go. Each event is tailored to your group, so if you want to add spirits or particular beers into the mix, just ask when you book.

You can book your beer tasting by emailing kate@northbarltd.com and find out more online. Prices vary depending on your party size.

Groundbreaking Experiences from Riptide

Immersive theatre company Riptide are doing things a little differently during the pandemic with two experiences to get involved in. The first is Project Intimacy, a pervasive experience designed to combat isolation by pairing you with another participant – you’ll be guided through the two-week experiment together, so you’re never on your own. The second is The Lucky Ones – you’ll become the main character in an augmented reality adventure that is part-theatre, part-video game and part-escape room.

You can book your Riptide experiences online. Project Intimacy costs £15 and The Lucky Ones costs £40.

Wine Tastings with Yorkshire Wine School

Wine

If you love wine, join Yorkshire Wine School for an evening celebrating all things vino. From Italian red taste-offs to deep dives into Pinot and meet the winemaker events, they’ve got all kinds of virtual wine tastings to suit your tastebuds. Whichever one you plump for, you’ll get a specially curated taster case of wine delivered, before you jump onto a live stream with taster-in-chief Laura Kent who’ll lead you through the delicate flavours of each glass.

You can book your Yorkshire Wine School wine tastings online. They cost from £60.

Opera Workshops with Opera North

Opera North has a host of digital workshops to do at home. There are four different ways you can get involved. The Little School of Music encourages children to explore music at home, while the Orchestral Academy Online offers masterclasses to young instrumentalists. For adults, One-to-One brings performances into your living room or you can join in with their Virtual Choirs – From Couch to Chorus is a fun 4-week programme to learn 3 operatic classics and Step Into Singing provides special classes for people living in persistent pain.

You can sign up for Opera North’s digital workshops online. They range from free to £3 per session.

Mini-Make at Midday Workshops with Chirpy

Chirpy Workshops

Chirpy have moved their much-loved craft workshops online, including Mini Make at Midday which takes place every Thursday lunchtime. Shop owner Jo McBeath is teaming up with fellow Yorkshire maker Agnis Smallwood to put on a series of fun and easy-to-do at-home workshops that anyone can get involved in, whatever your experience. You could be making anything from woven wall arts to flower brooches, woven coasters and needle felted heart decorations, depending on the weekly-changing theme.

You can book your place online. Tickets cost £20.

Cocktails from The Domino Club & Roland’s

Roland's, margarita

© Copyright Leeds-List 2021 by Dan Murray

You don’t have to miss out on The Domino Club and Roland’s incredible cocktails – they’re delivering them to you. Whether you fancy a negroni, margarita or their stellar espresso martini, they’ll bottle it up, complete with a garnish and method ready for you to shake up and serve at home. They also have a Cocktail Masterclass Kit that comes with a G&T to start, followed by everything you need to make three delicious cocktails.

You can order your cocktails online. They cost from £18 and masterclasses cost £50.

DIY Pizza from Kirkstall Brewery

Kirkstall Brewery Taproom

© Copyright Leeds-List 2021 by Oliver Dixon Photography

Since you can’t visit them, Kirkstall Brewery are delivering their delicious pizzas for you to make at home. Their special DIY pizza packages come ready with everything you need to make two Margherita pizzas. There are two fresh, ready-proved dough balls, cubed mozzarella, fior di latte, marinara sauce, basil and extra virgin olive oil – just follow the foolproof instructions that come in the box to whip up a tasty Italian treat.

You can order your DIY pizza kits online. They cost £10.

Museums at Home from Leeds Museums and Galleries

Looking for ways to keep the little ones entertained during lockdown? Let Leeds Museums and Galleries help. Their Museums at Home programme offers all kinds of educational fun, live streamed or available as videos whenever you want to access them. They’ve put together a rich programme of things to see and do – from Sensory Storytime to Wildlife World videos, craft activities and Meet & Make Workshops, there’s a little something for everyone.

You can check out all the Museums at Home activities online. It’s free.

Cocktail Masterclasses from Liquor Lab

Cocktails

Liquor Lab is a Leeds-based cocktail party service that has shifted their focus in the past year to bring their fun-filled concoctions to your home. You can get their cocktail jar gift sets and masterclass boxes, complete with instructions and equipment. Whether you love a Raspberry Cosmo or have been dying for a Piña Colada, they’ll furnish you with everything you need to make it happen, from the ingredients to shakers, glasses and garnishes.

You can order cocktail masterclasses online. It costs from £4.50 per cocktail.

Live Culture Shows from Open Source Arts

Open Source Arts is a Burley-based cultural hub with an aim to make the arts open to everyone. They host regular, pay-as-you-feel live streamed events online during lockdown. It could be Watch Your Mouth!, their two-night festival of poetry, spoken word and film or it could be one of their live streamed affordable theatre productions, like This is Not a Burlesque Show, which uses cabaret to explore experiences of love and sex whilst living with a mental illness.

You can book the shows online. It’s pay as you feel.

Virtual Gin School with Hotham’s

Hothams Gin Virtual Tasting

It’s time to dive head first into the world of gin with Hotham’s Virtual Gin School. You can book a private session for up to six people with one of their expert distillers to learn all about mother’s ruin. Before the session starts, you’ll get sent a hamper with two gins, two tumblers, a selection of tonics and a tasting kit. Once online, you’ll learn all about the unique taste profiles of Hotham’s gin and direct the head distiller makes a bespoke gin based on your favourite botanicals, which you’ll then be sent.

You can book your Virtual Gin School online.

The Good Book from Slung Low

The Good Book was filmed and ready to get the red carpet premiere it so richly deserved before all this happened. However, not to be denied, Slung Low have now put this captivating short film online so anyone and everyone can watch it. It’s a dystopian drama set on the streets of Beeston and Holbeck. The film is only 30 minutes long and features three professional actors performing alongside over 100 members of the local community, as a civil war breaks out in a very different Leeds and UK of the future.

You can watch Slung Low’s The Good Book online. It’s free.

The Weekly Women’s Workshop from Mafwa Theatre

Mafwa Theatre is a local community theatre company that brings together refugees, asylum seekers and settled communities through art. Their weekly drama workshops have moved online, so every Friday you can join Artistic Directors Keziah Berelson and Tamsin Cook for a relaxed hour of learning and socialising, with the aim of creating work that celebrates diversity and gives development opportunities to people who might not usually get them.

You can sign-up for their weekly sessions online. It’s free.

Cocktail Making Kits from Pinche Pinche

Margarita

If you’ve always wanted to learn how to make a classic Mexican cocktail from scratch, now’s your chance. Pinche Pinche have packaged up everything you need to make the perfect Tommy’s Margarita at home in one handy little kit. They’ll send you a 500ml bottle of Ocho 8 Single Estate Reposado Tequila, as well as agave syrup, spirit measures, limes and a copper or silver cocktail shaker – just follow the instructions, and bam, a lip-smacking cocktail!

You can order your cocktail making kits online. They cost £45.

Escape Rooms at Home with Escape Hunt

Escape Hunt

Since you can’t go to Escape Hunt, they’re bringing it to you. You can team up with your pals for one of their remote escape rooms – you all log on to Zoom and direct a real-life games master to find hidden clues, solve puzzles and escape before time runs out. Just choose from their Doctor Who, Time’s Ticking and The Fourth Samurai games. But that’s not all, as they also have print & play adventures for all ages, digital games you can play online and hosted digital games led by one of their expert games masters.

You can book your escape room by calling 0113 243 2222 and find out more online. Tickets cost £80 for up to 4 people.

Pizza at Home Kits from Sela Bar

Sela Bar Pizza

Credit: Ollievision

If you’re missing your fill of Sela Bar’s delicious pizza during lockdown, you don’t have to anymore as they’ve put together DIY Pizza Kits you can make up at home. They’ll send you enough sourdough pizza dough for two people, complete with mozzarella and their delicious house tomato sauce, all you have to do is add any extra toppings and follow the cooking instructions. Want to make it gluten-free or add vegan mozzarella? No problem, they’ll sort it. Add a couple of cocktails or beers and that’s tea sorted.

You can order your Pizza at Home Kits online. It costs £25 for two people.

Dance On Workshops with Yorkshire Dance

Spring Fling

Credit: David Lindsay

Dance On is Yorkshire Dance’s programme to tackle inactivity among older adults – and they’ve taken it online to help those who need it during lockdown. Working with One Dance UK and Doncaster Community Arts, these sessions take place on Tuesdays, Wednesday and Fridays. From disco grooves to 70s classics, relaxing movement techniques and an old-school Charleston, it’s up to you – all abilities are welcome, with every session done seated or standing.

You can book your place online. It’s free.

Cheese Tasting from George & Joseph

George and Joseph

George and Joseph are an award-winning Leeds cheesemongers running monthly virtual cheese tastings to get us through these tough times. When you sign up, you’ll get sent a box of five mystery cheese, complete with crackers and chutneys. From Baron Bignod Brie to a rich Cornish Cheddar, you’ll do well to keep it in its box until you’re joined on a video call with owner Stephen Fleming. He’ll take you through the cheese-tastic delights of each one with tasting notes. Want to go all out? Get their drinks pairing too.

You can book your cheese tasting online. It costs £40 for two people.

Leeds Film Player from Leeds International Film Festival

Originally launched as a way to present last year’s programmes for Leeds International Film Festival, Leeds Young Film Festival, and the INDIs, the Leeds Film Player is staying up during lockdown. It gives you the chance to watch six special independent selections from the LIFF team alongside five festival favourites. Currently, you can watch the likes of 2020’s acclaimed German flick Cocoon, 2019’s Italian thriller Il Traditore and 2014’s Hungarian comedy Liza, The Fox-Fairy.

You can rent all the films on Leeds Film Player online. They cost from £5.

Dance films from Northern Ballet

Northern Ballet's Casanova

Credit: Emma Kauldhar

Missing the ballet? Now you can view a new season of Digital Dance films with Northern Ballet for free. You can watch Cathy Marston’s incredibly powerful Victoria, as previously seen in cinemas and on BBC Four, or two new premières – this is your first chance to see Kenneth Tindall’s Have Your Cake and Olivier award-winning Ballet Black artist Mthuthuzeli November’s What Used To, No Longer Is. If that’s not enough, Northern Ballet still have their very own Casanova to rent online too.

You can stream the Digital Dance films online and Casanova on Digital Theatre online. The Digital Dance films are free and Casanova costs £7.99.

Make Your Own Pasta Kits from Sarto

Sarto

They’re back! Sarto’s cook-at-home pasta kits went down a storm during the first two lockdowns, so they’ve put them on sale again. You’ll get all the ingredients you need to recreate your pick of five incredible Sarto dishes. There’s rigatoni with lamb shoulder ragu or fettuccine with pork and ‘nduja ragu. Prefer no meat? You can whip up radiatori with kale and hazelnut pesto, fettuccine with wild mushrooms and marsala cream or even campenelle with heirloom squash, sage and toasted almonds.

You can order Sarto’s Make Your Own Pasta Kits online. They cost £8.50.

Lunchtime local history talks with Leeds Libraries

Why not fill your lockdown with a dose of local history? Every Friday lunchtime, Leeds Libraries hosts a special talk with experts in their fields – and they’re free to attend. One week you could be looking at how Leeds was at the cutting edge of machine-making during the Victorian Era, the next you could be discovering all the incredible stories of the city’s local cemeteries. They cover a whole host of areas, so you can find the perfect one for you.

You can book your tickets online. They’re free.