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75 Independent Eateries You Have to Try Before You Die

· Joseph Sheerin · Food and Drink

How many of these fantastic Leeds independents have you tried?

Ox Club

These amazing eateries are proving that Leeds is a foodie haven – but the proof, as they say, is in the pudding.

Leeds’ independent scene is buzzing right now – it feels like there’s a new bar, restaurant, cafe or shop opening every week. And as you’ll soon see from this abundant list of amazing eateries, they’re a pretty talented bunch. So whether you fancy a spot of afternoon tea, want to go exotic with Thai food or splash out with a unique fine dining experience, these Leeds indies are the way to go.

1. Home

Home

Elizabeth Cottam and Mark Owens have created Home – a fine dining restaurant, but not as you know it. Take a seat in this welcoming Kirkgate venue to enjoy a creative three, five or ten-course tasting menu, served without the pretence. They make seasonal dishes like steamed game pie with English xo sauce, peas and lemon or pigeon with red cabbage, roasted salsify and smoked leg pastie, which you can then enjoy with one of their handpicked wines or inventive cocktails.

Home, 16/17 Kirkgate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6BY.

2. The Greedy Pig

The Greedy Pig, Bacon and Pancakes

Credit: Ali Turner

If you want to get your day going with a hearty breakfast, packed full of amazing local produce, look no further than The Greedy Pig. They’re famous for their imaginative sandwiches, but they also do a delicious full English, pancakes smothered in maple syrup and beans on sourdough toast with smoked bacon, pig’s trotter and apple. Head back for lunch for even more tasty fodder – or try their supper club.

The Greedy Pig, 58 North Street, Leeds West Yorkshire, LS2 7PN.

3. The Swine That Dines

The Swine that Dines

Credit: Thom Archer

The Greedy Pig’s evening alter-ego, The Swine That Dines is a weekly supper club that takes place in the cafe every Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 6pm until 9pm. During those hours, they concoct a small plates menu using only the best quality local produce. It often uses elements you might not expect, thanks to their nose to tail or roots to shoots philosophy – think autumn squash, walnut and tarragon, alongside bone marrow, green pepper and horseradish.

The Swine That Dines, 58 North Street, Leeds West Yorkshire, LS2 7PN.

4. Lupe’s Cantina

Lupe's Cantina

Nestled in Burley, Lupe’s Cantina is well worth escaping the city for. The new independent eatery has made waves with its classic approach to Central American favourites that you might not have come across before. Delve into the likes of queso fundido, which is melted cheese and chorizo, or sopa Azteca, a tortilla soup, then wash it down with an Ocho Reales beer, which you can only get here in Leeds, or one of their margaritas.

Lupe’s Cantina, 204 Cardigan Road, Burley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 1LF.

5. The Reliance

Grapeful Festival Food

At the very North end of the city centre, The Reliance merges real ale and craft beer, with a memorable dining experience. From charcuterie platters made up of Yorkshire meat to Erdinger battered fish and chips and pork ribeye with rainbow chard and truffle jus, this is great food served up in a relaxed environment – and we can’t get enough of it.

The Reliance, 76-78 North Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7PN.

6. Tharavadu

Tharavadu

If it’s authentic Keralan cuisine you’re after, check out one of Leeds’ finest independent Indian restaurants, Tharavadu. It’s been a game-changer since it opened on Mill Hill all those years ago, serving up an alternative to your usual curries. Tuck into tasty dishes like kozhi stew, meen koottan and adu cheera mappas – you never know, you might find a new favourite.

Tharavadu, 7-8 Mill Hill, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5DQ.

7. Hepworth’s Deli

Hepworth's Deli Veggie Platter

If you’re terribly indecisive, you might struggle at Hepworth’s Deli. They have oodles of options and they’re all darned tasty. You can get any of their gourmet sandwiches for £5, even their famous fish finger butty, which comes with beer battered fish goujons, homemade tartar sauce and fresh lemon. Alternatively, why not try one of their mezze platters? It’s the perfect way to get all the things you like, in one box.

Hepworth’s Deli, 21 Thornton’s Arcade, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6LQ.

8. Olive & Rye

Olive & Rye

If you love Hepworth’s, you need to try sister venue Olive & Rye. When the first is busy, you can come here to eat in, enjoying the lovely rustic decor while you devour an equally delicious lunch. There’s sandwiches like the Yorkshire wagyu with chilli jam and inventive dishes like the chorizo baked beans on sourdough, as well as a deli counter which is filled with local meats, cheese and wines. They even do a monthly fine dining supper club, but tables do go quickly.

Olive & Rye, 18-20 Queens Arcade, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6LF.

9. Gabbar

Gabbar

Gabbar takes inspiration from the traditional street food stalls and working class cafes of Indian. It’s here that you’ll find the authentic chapata dishes that adorn the menu – dishes like chole bhature (marinated chickpeas and paneer cubes) and the daal makhni (a slow cooked curry with black grams and kidney beans). There’s also what they call ‘The King of Street Food’, the momos, a type of steamed dumpling stuffed with veg and cheese. Pair your food with a craft beer or one of their Indian-inspired cocktails for the complete Gabbar experience.

Gabbar, 17-19 Merrion Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8JE.

10. Souvlaki

Souvlaki

Credit: Daria Wszolek

Have you tried Souvlaki yet? From the outside it doesn’t look like much, but step inside and you’ll be treated to a holiday vibe and the mouth-watering aromas of Mediterranean cooking. The Souvlaki skewers are simply divine. It’s a simple dish, skewers, marinated and cooked, then served with spiced chips, salad, roasted veg and pitta, but it really hits the spot. And if that’s not your thing, they do stifado, moussaka and kleftiko. You might even get to enjoy some live music while you’re there.

Souvlaki, 18 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3DW.

11. My Thai

My Thai York Place

Credit: Contakt Photography

Stepping into My Thai is like stepping into Bangkok without ever having to board a plane. There are two venues in the city centre and they both serve up reasonably priced, but amazingly tasty Thai street food, from pad Thai to tamarin duck, Thai green curry and pad gra pow. It’s blessed with a buzzing atmosphere if you want to sit in, or you can save time and order to take out.

My Thai, 43 Wade Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 8NJ.

12. Nom Deli

Nom Deli, Vietnamese food in Leeds

Fancy something a little bit different? Then head to Nom Deli for a banh mi. They load up freshly toasted baguettes with fragrant ingredients like carrot, daikon pickles, coriander, chilli and your pick of filling – will it be tofu and mushroom, chicken, hoisin duck, grilled fish or BBQ pork? If you’d like something a little bit lighter, they also do phở (rice noodle soup), cuốn (summer rolls) and bún (rice noodle salads).

Nom Deli, 77a Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3BR.

13. Estabulo

Estabulo

Estabulo serves up an endless supply of quality meat, so it is without a doubt one of the best independents in Leeds. It’s a proper Brazilian BBQ restaurant and they use the traditional methods of the gaúchos to cook an array of delectable meats. To get your plate filled, just turn your card to green and their passadores will cut the likes of beef tenderloin, sirloin and belly pork onto your plate – when you’re full, just flip it to red.

Estabulo, 5 St Peter’s Square, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS9 8AQ.

14. The Oxford Place

2 Oxford Place, Leeds

Credit: Ollievision

You might have noticed that the name has changed. The Oxford Place is under new management, but while the venue has undergone some changes, it’s still the place to go for gluten-free food. Their brunch and lunch menu includes everything from Welsh rarebit to spinach and ricotta pancakes, and come teatime, you can tuck into the likes of slow-cooked belly pork with baked apple, celeriac puree, crackling and red wine jus or sausages with flat parsley mash and root vegetable gravy.

The Oxford Place, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3AX.

15. Fettle

Fine by Fettle

Have you discovered Fettle yet? It’s a Scandinavian-inspired cafe on Great George Street and it’s worth checking out. By day, they serve up a surprisingly diverse drinks menu, with your usual cappuccinos and flat whites alongside creative concoctions like the red velvet latte. Breakfast brings smashed avocado on sourdough toast, while lunch promises their signature salt beef brioche. And if you visit after dark, you can try their Fine at Fettle supper club, which transforms the venue into a fine dining destination.

Fettle, 73 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3BR.

16. Sous Le Nez

Sous le Nez

Credit: Jess Rowbottom

Tucked away underneath The Quebec Hotek, Sous Le Nez has been cooking up quality French cuisine for 25 years. From their subterranean home, they serve up a refined menu of French favourites, from roast sirloin of veal, wrapped in Serrano ham with wild mushrooms, broad beans and sage beurre blanc to pan-fried calves liver with parmesan gratin dauphinoise, crispy pancetta and port jus.

Sous Le Nez, The Basement, Quebec House, Quebec Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2HA.

17. Heaney and Mill

Heaney and Mill

Heaney and Mill is a relaxed fine dining restaurant where you can indulge in a bit of luxury. They’re open for breakfast, but their true colours are shown at lunch and dinner, when you can tuck into a selection of creative dishes. From Yorkshire lamb rump with golden raisins, toasted spices and pomegranate molasses to black treacle cured beef fillet with wasabi creamed spinach, it’s a delicious experience in a surprisingly relaxed setting.

Heaney and Mill, 48 Otley Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2AL.

18. Jenny’s Jerk Chicken

Jenny's Jerk Chicken

You may have come across Jenny’s Jerk Chicken before – they had a van just off Briggate – but they’re also one of the permanent street food traders inside Leeds Kirkgate Market. Expect authentic Caribbean cooking, with everything from jerk BBQ chicken wraps and goat curry to beef stew, fried plantain and rice and peas. You can eat in or take away – why not do a spot of shopping while you’re here?

Jenny’s Jerk Chicken, Leeds Kirkgate Market, 28-34 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7HY.

19. Hansa’s

Hansa's Thali

As one of Leeds’ finest Indian restaurants, Hansa’s reputation really does precede it. It’s been open for over 30 years and they’re still one of the finest Gujarati vegetarian restaurants you’ll find, with dishes like bhaji paneer and chevti daal cementing their reputation. To get a true and varied taste of what they offer, you have to try the thali which gives you two curries and a range of sides – it’s no wonder Hansa is a culinary legend in her own right.

Hansa’s, 72-74 North Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7PN.

20. Shears Yard

Shears Yard Unlimited Brunch

Shears Yard is a unique venue. It’s a converted old warehouse where you can enjoy an evening of fine dining. Their menus are constantly changing. They make the most of the best seasonal produce, using them to create unique flavour combinations, so you can try lightly cured sea trout, smoked trout croquette, wasabi mayonnaise, cucumber and apple to start, followed by seared duck breast, black pudding and bread sauce with truffle, braised red cabbage and salt baked celeriac.

Shears Yard, 11-15 Wharf Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7EH.

21. The Agora

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The first thing that will grab your attention about The Agora is the buzzing atmosphere. Expect traditional music, and even a bit of dancing if you’re lucky. But it’s the menu of classic Mediterranean food that will leave you in no doubt as to why it’s so popular. Start off with the likes of dolmades or tzatziki before going onto the mains. There are classics like moussaka, stifado and kleftiko, but if you’re feeling hungry, why not share one of their jam-packed meat or veggie mezze platters?

The Agora, 207-209 New Road Side, Horsforth, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS18 4DR.

22. Bulgogi Grill

Bulgogi Grill Leeds

Going to a restaurant and cooking the food yourself might seem like an odd prospect, but Bulgogi Grill makes it fun and tasty. It’s the first-ever Korean BBQ restaurant in the city, serving up chunks of meat, covered in their famous Bulgogi marinade, which you then cook yourself on the tabletop grill, before wrapping it all up with lettuce, rice and veggies.

Bulgogi Grill, 9 Merrion Way, Arena Quarter, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8BT.

23. Ira B’s

Ira B's, Leeds

Credit: Phil Witcomb

Jewish food is known for its hefty portions, and Roundhay cafe Ira B’s backs that up emphatically. It’s quickly become one of the most lauded independent eateries in the region, with folk gorging on the likes of chicken schnitzel and salt beef sarnies or the DIY salad counter. Only an indie could make a suburban cafe such a must-visit.

Ira B’s, 27 Chelwood Drive, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS8 2AT.

24. Thai A Roy Dee

Thai Aroy Dee, Vicar Lane

Despite a gap of a few years when it closed, Thai A Roy Dee has long been one of the best Thai eateries in Leeds. Their bring your own bottle policy is attractive enough, but it’s the attentive service and the range of authentic Thai dishes that will have you coming back for more. Fancy a pad Thai? No problem. How about a Thai red curry? You got it. They’ve got all the bases covered.

Thai A Roy Dee, 120-122 Vicar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7NL.

25. Cat’s Pyjamas

Cat's Pyjamas Leeds

Indian street food is all the rage at the minute, and there’s one name in particular that you need to try out. The wonderfully titled Cat’s Pyjamas offers a menu of Indian classics created by Michelin star chef Alfred Prasad. It features Kolkata chaat, Amritsari fish, aloo cutlet chaat, Goan chicken cafreal, saag paneer and more – giving you a real taste of India in a charming little venue.

Cat’s Pyjamas, 53 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3AB & 9 Eastgate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7LY.

26. Sushi Waka

Sushiwaka Leeds

Credit: Ali Turner

Sushi Waka is one of the best Japanese restaurants in Leeds, with a vast menu that caters for everyone. It’s an unassuming restaurant from the outside, but once inside you’ll soon see that they know what they’re doing. They do a fine selection of sushi dishes, from soft shell crab rolls to aomori king prawn dragon, and there’s an abundance of classic dishes on the menu too such as tempura, ramen and bento boxes.

Sushi Waka, 28 New Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6NU.

27. Pizza Fella

Pizza Fella

Take a seat in Pizza Fella’s stripped back venue and pore over their menu of 12 individually numbered Neapolitan-style treats, each made with Italian Caputo flour, San Marzano tomatoes and Fior di Latte. Tuck into everything from the number two, a classic Margherita, to the number eight, which comes loaded with ‘nduja, balsamic onions and caciocavallo cheese.

Pizza Fella, 114-116 Vicar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7NL.

28. The Tetley

The Tetley, Leeds

It’s an art gallery and it’s a bar, but The Tetley is also home to a mighty fine restaurant. Staying true to its heritage, its menu is inspired by the best of Yorkshire. Start your day with a Twisted Tetley at brunch – it’s eggy bread, bacon, a poached egg and syrup. Or pop by for lunch and enjoy a proper Ploughmans with a ham hock slice, Yorkshire Blue, Wensleydale, a Scotch egg, pickle, apple, tomato, fresh bread and onion butter. Wash it down with a pint from the brewery its named after and job’s a good ‘un.

The Tetley, Hunslet Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS10 1JQ.

29. The Yorkshire Wrap Company

Yorkshire Wrap Company

You don’t have to wait until Sunday to get your fill of Yorkshire puddings. The Yorkshire Wrap Company has got you covered with its incredible wraps. That’s right – they get a Yorkshire pudding, ram it full of mouthwatering fillings like a full English, pulled pork or slow roasted beef and top it with lashings of gravy. They’ve put their own spin on a Yorkshire classic and they’re that good, you’ll be back again the next day, and the day after that, and the day after that.

Yorkshire Wrap Company, Market Food Court, Kirkgate, 7HY, Kirkgate, Leeds LS2 7HY.

30. Manjit’s Kitchen

Manjit's Kitchen, Trinity Kitchen

They’ve long been a street food favourite in Leeds, popping up at events across the city, but Manjit’s Kitchen now has a venue to call its own. They’ve got a permanent space at Kirkgate Market, so you have no excuse not to pay them a visit. Tuck into their Punjabi take on Indian street food, with the likes of shahi paneer and, of course, their renowned chaat station.

Manjit’s Kitchen, Leeds Kirkgate Market, 28-34 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7HY.

31. Cantina

The Cantina Old Red Bus Station

You’ll find Cantina within another famed Leeds indie, The Old Red Bus Station, and it’s the first 100% vegan eatery in the city. Sam Thomas has created a diverse menu of completely vegan dishes, using ethically-sourced, local produce. From the pulled jackfruit burger to the slow-cooked chana masala, it will really hit the spot – and for once, there’s oodles of choice.

Cantina, The Old Red Bus Station, 101, Vicar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7NL.

32. Arch Cafe

Arch Cafe

Credit: Ollievision

The Arch Cafe is different to other cafes – yes, it has an abundance of cakes, hot dishes and sandwiches to keep you ticking over throughout the day, as well as plenty of hot drinks. But it also has a social conscience which has seen it become a vital part of the community, as it forms a base for the Age UK charity – eat and drink safe in the knowledge that you’re giving something back.

The Arch Café, Mark Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8LA.

33. Laynes Espresso

Laynes Espresso, New Station Street

Credit: Ollievision

Laynes Espresso is one of the city’s most prized independents. The quality of their coffee is exceptional, exactly what you need after a stressful commute, but there’s more to the cafe than just a brew. Follow it up with the likes of baked ham hock and rarebit on toast or buckwheat pancakes with an ever-changing array of toppings and you’re onto a winner. The cakes aren’t bad either.

Laynes Espresso, 16 New Station Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5DL.

34. Dough Bistro

Dough Bistro, Leeds

Credit: James P. Lester

If you’re a fan of fine dining, head to Dough in West Park. It originally started life as a bakery, which you can still enjoy next door at Dough Deli, but it’s their bistro that’s been wowing the city’s foodies of late. They have a menu that changes daily, utilising the best local and seasonal produce they can get their hands on, which can range from pigeon breast to confit duck and soy seared tuna.

Dough Bistro, 293 Spen Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS16 5BD.

35. White’s

White's Deli, Headingley

White’s is a proper all-dayer. Stop by in the morning for your caffeine injection or lovely breakfast to start the day, nip in for a hearty lunch with sandwiches, salads and small plates to see you into the afternoon, or come by in the evening for drinks. They serve hot dishes until late, including sausage stew, sweet potato curry and beef chilli – and they put on entertainment too.

White’s Deli, 9 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3AA.

36. Sheaf Street Cafeteria

The Grub and Grog Shop

After a long stint at Northern Monk, The Grub and Grog Shop have taken their wares to Sheaf Street Cafeteria. Kick off your day with something from the breakfast menu, which includes the likes of crumpets and beans on toast. Too early for you? Their lunch menu offers up an array of sandwiches which change daily, alongside seasonal soups, stews and salads. Or if you just fancy a light bite to go with your brew, they have a range of bar snacks like English oat falafel with pickles and bean butter or pork pie with brown sauce.

Sheaf Street Cafeteria, 3 Sheaf Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS10 1HD.

37. Mrs Atha’s

Pancakes at mrs Atha's

Mrs Athas is one of the most popular coffee shops in Leeds – and it’s easy to see why. It’s absolutely packed with character, from the quirky vintage teacups to the exposed brickwork and the tantalising selection of cakes that always offer something for vegetarians, vegans and coeliacs. The coffee tastes great, the beans come from Maude Coffee, their own independent roastery, and the food is ruddy awesome – we go on and on about the sausage sandwich, because it’s worth raving about.

Mrs Atha’s, Central Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6DE.

38. Pintura

Pintura, Morcilla, Unusual Eats – Food Done Differently

Tapas is a big deal in Leeds right now, and Pintura have come along with their own, modern Basque take on proceedings. The stunning four-storey restaurant is home to a cocktail bar in the basement, while the rest is dedicated to dishes like Basque black pudding, crunchy hen’s egg and piquillo ketchup, tiger prawns marinated in olive oil, chilli and garlic and home slated cod with squid-ink paella and confit green peppers.

Pintura, 1 Trinity Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6AP.

39. Haley and Clifford

Haley and Clifford Leeds

Credit: Ollievision Photography

Street Lane deli Haley and Clifford is the place to go for the best Yorkshire produce. They stock an unbelievable range of cheeses, baked bread, jams, chutneys and condiments, all made just a few miles from where you’re buying them – and if you find yourself spoilt for choice, their incredibly friendly staff are ready to help. Have a coffee while you’re there too, they make a great brew.

Haley & Clifford, 43 Street Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS8 1AP.

40. Holy Mountain

Right now it’s only a pop-up, but if we go in our droves, maybe we can convince The Holy Mountain to stay at Chida Cantina for good. We certainly can’t imagine a world without their cheap and cheerful Mexican eats. You can dig into corn torillas topped with sticky pork belly, apple slaw and chipotle mayo or work your way through a loaded torta with any of their taco toppings (try the spiced jackfruit with pear and kale chincharrone). It’s delicious and surprisingly affordable.

The Holy Mountain at Chida Cantina, 5 Cross Belgrave Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8JP.

41. Cielo Blanco

Cielo Blanco Pork Sharing Board

A Mexican restaurant-cum-bar, Cielo Blanco is just as good at serving up amazing cocktails as they are at cooking up delicious food, so why not do both? Sit out on their Trinity Leeds terrace with a mojito or a margarita, then tuck into their sharing boards, empanadas and tostadas. You’ve got a ready-made night out right here.

Cielo Blanco, 415 Trinity Leeds, Albion Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5AY.

42. Roots and Fruits

Roots & Fruits

Credit: Sarae Akhamal

For over a decade Roots and Fruits have been serving up solely veggie and vegan-friendly food. Their menu is full of classics like burgers, salads, falafel and lasagne, and while it all goes down just grand, the service and ambience is what makes Roots and Fruits truly a Leeds gem. Don’t forget – you can bring along your own booze for a small corkage fee.

Roots & Fruits, 10 Grand Arcade, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6PG.

43. Oranaise

Oranaise Cafe Leeds

Fans of North African cuisine should make a beeline for Oranaise. This little cafe has been on Hyde Park Corner for over a decade, but their quality approach to dishes like bourek, cous cous and tagine (there’s so much tagine) comes through with each bite. Stay and enjoy a treat from their bakery and a coffee for dessert in an incredibly laid back setting.

Oranaise, 1 The Crescent, Hyde Park, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2NW.

44. Caracas Grill

Caracus Grill

Credit: Ali Turner

Caracas Grill may have swapped Duncan Street for the business district, but it’s still well worth detouring for. This is the city’s only Venezuelan street food joint, so you can try something new. You can get a pepito or a parilla. The first is a baguette, the second is a loaded pile of meat – whichever you choose, you’ll have a choice of steak, sausage, chicken or maybe all three. Drizzle on their homemade sauces and you’re away.

Caracas Grill, Britannia House, 16 York Place, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2EU.

45. Opposite

Opposite Cafe in Leeds

Opposite got its name because their home is literally across the road from the Parkinson Building on Woodhouse Lane. It’s a coffee shop with a slew of breakfast and lunchtime options – you can choose from freshly prepared sandwiches and salads, which are a firm favourite with the students. Their coffees are top-notch and will help set you up for the day.

Opposite Cafe, 26 Back Blenheim Terrace, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 9HD.

46. Humpit

Humpit Family-friendly Leeds

Credit: Ali Turner

A Leeds original that has already spread across the North, Humpit does one thing, but it does it so well that you’ll want to go back again and again. Hummus is their speciality, either in a bowl or a pitta, whichever you choose, you can add the likes of falafel and salsa, to create something incredibly fresh and tasty.

Humpit, Leeds Corn Exchange, Call Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 7BR.

47. Pinche Pinche

Pinche Pinche

Head out to Chapel Allerton to experience what has long been a favourite Mexican eatery. Pinche Pinche is an intimate affair that uses the best ingredients all the way from Mexico to cook up their abundant tapas menu, or their fiery burritos and enchiladas. If you don’t mind sharing, the Mexican platters are a sight to behold, and should be followed by one of their fine tequila-based cocktails.

Pinche Pinche, 116 Harrogate Road, Chapel Allerton, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 4NY.

48. Thai Sabai

Thai Sabai, Headingley

While the meaty Thai food options at Headingley independent Thai Sabai are delicious, we can’t recommend the vegetarian dishes enough. There are two whole pages to choose from, which you just don’t get in many restaurants. Chow down on the tofu pad pak or the oyster and mushroom panang hed, in a cafe-style eatery that’s got a welcoming, charming atmosphere.

Thai Sabai, 2 The Parade, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3HP.

49. El Bareto

El Bareto

Head north through Chapel Allerton and eventually, you’ll come across one of best-kept secrets in Leeds. El Bareto is a tapas restaurant with a real Spanish feel – there’s a petite but characterful bar upstairs before you head down into a basement dining room where you’ll be treated to the likes of Spanish meatballs, chorizo in cider and jalapeño croquettes by their incredibly helpful staff – it’s definitely worth the journey.

El Bareto, 120 Gledhow Valley Road, Chapel Allerton, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS17 6LX.

50. Culto

That's Amore

Formerly known as That’s Amore, Culto is one of the finest Italian restaurants in Leeds. Head into the charming, rustic venue and prepare to be wowed. They do a fine selection of sandwiches, pasta dishes and mains, but it’s the stone baked pizzas that will really hit the spot. They’ve got all your favourites from quattro stagioni to the calzone, but if you really want to see what they’re all about, wrap your lips around a pizza nera, with its black charcoal base.

Culto, 97 Stainbeck Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 2PR.

51. Viva Cuba

Paella at Viva Cuba, Leeds

Viva Cuba is all about cooking up the best tapas dishes from around the world. Whether it’s seafood paella, Spanish ham, egg and chips, or their famous patatas bravas, you’re sure to get your fill. Their charcuterie platters are worth a visit in their own right and they match each section of the menu with a different sherry, so why not take their advice and pair it up?

Viva Cuba, 342 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS4 2DS.

52. Casa Colombiana

Llapingacho at Casa Colombiana, Leeds

Credit: Ollievision

It professes to be the home of Colombian coffee in Leeds (and it is very good), but Casa Colombiana is much more than just a coffee shop. They have a carefully crafted menu of South American food that you can enjoy all day long – from classic chilli con carne to llapingacho and ceviche. Oh, and it’s got a cracking atmosphere with real latin spirit – head upstairs to the bar after for salsa and you’ll see what we mean.

Casa Colombiana, Grand Arcade, 6 Vicar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6PG.

53. Granary Restaurant

Granary restaurant, Cookridge

If you’re looking for somewhere to eat that also gives something back, why not visit The Granary Restaurant? It’s run by a charity called Caring for Life who support homeless and vulnerable people. You can help them out by enjoying a meal in this amazing 17th century converted barn, whether it’s breakfast or lunch, they do an amazing sirloin steak and pie and chips.

Granary Restaurant, Crag House Farm, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS16 7NH.

54. Mill Kitchen

Mill Kitchen Leeds

It doesn’t get any more Leeds than Mill Kitchen. Set in a converted textile mill in Farsley, they use the best local produce to whip up their breakfasts, salads, sarnies and daily specials. They also have a deli section which is stocked up so you can pick up local jams, breads and cheeses to take home. Keep an eye out for their special dining events too.

Mill Kitchen, Sunnybank Mills, 83-85 Town Street, Farsley, Pudsey, West Yorkshire, LS28 5UJ.

55. Primo’s

Primo's, Leeds Corn Exchange

Anyone for a hot dog? Down in Leeds Corn Exchange you’ll come across a great independent that pulls no punches with its American inspired menu. From their chilli cheese dog to their Philly cheesesteak sandwich and Brooklyn burger, with sides of nachos and disco fries, this is proper American grub done well and everyone should try it at least once.

Primo’s Gourmet Hot Dogs, Leeds Corn Exchange 42 Call Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 7BR.

56. Crust and Crumb

Crust and Crumb, 61 Independent Eateries to Try Before You Die

Credit: Ollievision

If it’s fresh, local produce you’re looking for, Crust and Crumb, in the heart of Chapel Allerton, is just the ticket. This renowned bakery-cum-cafe has been feeding the folk of the Leeds surburb since 2010. It continues to go from strength to strength, serving fresh pastries, tasty hot meals, gourmet sarnies, quality breakfasts and produce from the likes of Bondgate Bakery for you to take home with you.

Crust and Crumb, 110b Harrogate Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 4NY.

57. Art’s Cafe

Art's Cafe

For over 20 years, Art’s Cafe has provided Call Lane with something a little more refined than the raucous debauchery of the nearby bars. It’s one of the most relaxed restaurants in the city, with a focus on plating up some really modern continental cuisine – think butterfly chicken supreme brushed with rosemary, lemon & garlic or cauliflower and potato dopiaza with coconut yoghurt, fragrant rice and poppadom.

Art’s Cafe, 42 Call Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6DT.

58. The Man Behind The Curtain

Man Behind the Curtain

Credit: Luke Hannaford

The city’s first Michelin starred restaurant in over a decade, Michael O’Hare’s The Man Behind The Curtain is setting the bar incredibly high. The restaurant sees the renowned chef realise some of his wildest dreams, in food from a tasting menu of between 10 and 14 plates. These are combinations you won’t find anywhere else, from Wagyu beef and olive juice to langoustine tartar with mussel consommeé.

The Man Behind The Curtain, 68-78 Vicar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 7JH.

59. Mans Market

Mans Market

Mans Market isn’t your usual Chinese restaurant. From the unique entrance of waving cats to the cool, modern restaurant downstairs, it’s a completely different kind of Chinese dining to what you’re used to. The venue’s slick design is replicated in their menu, which is made up of classic Chinese favourites done differently – think sweet and sour chicken on hanging skewers and beef in black bean sauce, served in the shell of a pepper.

Mans Market, Unit F, Wellington Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4JJ.

60. Rola Wala

Finding a home for their Indian street food, Rola Wala has quickly become a favourite as permanent residents in Leeds’ Trinity Kitchen, and it’s because their colourful wraps and bowls are packed full of flavour. From Bengali spice beef and Goan pulled pork to beetroot channa dal and grilled paneer tikka, stuck in a naan wrap or a hot bowl with rice, topped with a slew of incredibly tasty veggies, Rola Wala has struck gold.

Rola Wala, Trinity Leeds, Albion Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5AY.

61. Burt and Nelly

Burt & Nelly

A slice of New York has made its way to Leeds thanks to pizza joint Burt and Nelly. The Meanwood independent is doing things its own way with creative toppings that you can enjoy for both dinner and dessert. Choose from pizzas like Mike’s Creation, which pairs pepperoni and fresh chillies with a drizzle of honey, and then indulge in their sweet pizzas afterwards like the Lemon Cheesecake, which comes with lemon curd, mascarpone, ginger snaps and powdered sugar. There’s a few seats to eat in, but it’s more of a takeaway.

Burt and Nelly, 18 Stonegate Road, Meanwood, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 4HY.

62. Kendells Bistro

Kendells Bistro, Leeds

Tucked away by Leeds College of Music and The Wardrobe, Kendells Bistro is a hidden gem of quality French gastronomy. A relaxed, but romantic ambience is reflected back into the food, with a menu that changes daily, and binoculars that will help you see it on the blackboard from your table. Every time you visit, it’s a completely new experience, and that’s what keeps bringing people back.

Kendells Bistro, St Peters Square, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS9 8AH.

63. Senbon Sakura

Senbon Sakura

If you want to try an array of authentic Japanese dishes, go to Senbon Sakura. It’s a straightforward venue, but don’t worry, because the real magic happens in the kitchen. They serve up a wide selection of sushi, a mean chicken katsu curry with sticky rice and a wicked chicken yakitori. There’s also a tempting selection of noodle soups like the pork bone broth with ramen noodles and dumplings. It will leave you full for sure and for a very decent price.

Senbon Sakura, 71 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3BR.

64. Stories

Stories Oakwood

Credit: Helena-Marie Fletcher

Stories is a real find. Head out to Oakwood to discover a Scandinavian-inspired cafe that keeps it simple, with a minimalist decor and delectable menu. Start the day with an eye-opening coffee and dishes like banana pancakes with blueberry jam and yoghurt or poached eggs on sourdough, before trying out one of their freshly-squeezed juices as you put away the Mexican fajita bowl or avocado on toast at lunch time.

Stories, 454 Roundhay Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS8 2HU.

65. Monsieur Déjeuner

Monsieur Dejeuner, Headingley

Credit: P Flajszer

The lifelong dream of one man, Jean Damien Sebastian, Monsieur Dejeuner is open from breakfast until late, with a slew of options that will keep you coming back. They offer a delicious array of crepes, both sweet and savoury, as well as freshly baked baguettes and cakes which will go down a treat with one of their teas or coffees in the lovely rustic venue. They’ve got a license now, so it becomes a French-inspired wine bar in the evenings.

Monsieur Déjeuner, 3 Gateway House, 15 North Lane, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3HG.

66. Viet Guy

Viet Guy

Viet Guy is keeping things simple at their Lower Briggate venue. It’s a small restaurant with a simple decor, but the bar is well stocked and the menu is full of interesting Vietnamese street food dishes, like king prawn summer rolls, chilli and chicken pho, lemongrass and chilli goat and beef roll with betel leaf. The prices are pretty affordable too, so it won’t break the bank.

Viet Guy, 157-158 Lower Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6BG.

67. Vice & Virtue

Vice & Virtue
Vice & Virtue is one of the city’s most exciting fine dining restaurants. It comes from renowned Chef Luke Downing, the guy behind Dough Bistro, and he found the same success in the city centre with his restaurant-cum-bar. They serve up an ever-changing selection of five, eight and ten-course tasting menus that bring together unusual combinations, challenging you trying something new, like smoked venison tartar with hen yolk, capers, leek, saffron and whiskey smoke.

Vice & Virtue, 68 New Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6NU.

68. The Foundry

The Foundry

The Foundry is a hidden gem, offering British fine dining in a rustic restaurant. They take classic dishes and put their own unique spin on them, something that has won them acclaim as a Michelin Plate restaurant. You can tuck into the likes of pork fillet and black pudding with apple and calvados sauce or confit of duck with braised red cabbage and cider sauce, which will go down a dream with something from their huge wine selection.

The Foundry, 1 Saw Mill Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5WH.

69. Pride and Produce

Pride and Produce

If a trip out to the suburbs takes your fancy, Garforth has a cracking little independent cafe ready and waiting. Pride and Produce, is hellbent on showing off great local produce from around Yorkshire, and they do so with their menu which features everything from deli pots and stews to sandwiches, platters and cakes. You can also use their deli counter to take away cheeses from Cryer and Stott or breads and patisserie products made by Dumouchel Bakery.

Pride and Produce, 33a Main Street, Garforth, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS25 1DS.

70. LS6 Cafe

Ls6 Cafe and BAr, Hyde Park Corner, Leeds

It’s possibly the most well-known indie establishment on Hyde Park Corner, with the ambiance of a friendly local, and it’s safe to say LS6 Cafe is a master of all trades. Kick your day off with a coffee and something from their brunch menu, which includes four types of eggs on toast, four kinds of full Englishes and a slew of wraps and sarnies. Going out for dinner? You’ve got burgers, hot dogs and nachos to choose from, with a beer or glass of wine.

LS6 Cafe, 16 Headingley Lane, Leeds West Yorkshire, LS6 2AS.

71. House of Koko

House of Koko cafe in Chapel Allerton

Chapel Allerton has a lot of things going for it, and House of Koko is definitely one of them. Husband and wife team, Chris Ball and Shanshan Zhu, have created a stunning cafe that caters for everyone. Not only is it totally family-friendly, but the menu is packed with options that veggies and vegans will love. Try The Full Vegan, a scrumptious mix of homemade beans, sweetcorn fritters, half an avocado, salad and a slice of sourdough.

House of Koko, 62 Harrogate Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 4LA.

72. Ox Club

Ox Club

Credit: Tom Joy

Ox Club was the final piece in the 1000-piece Headrow House jigsaw when it opened in 2015 and it might well be the best bit. Formerly a street food vendor, their first permanent home has really brought out the best in them, with a cool-as-heck venue and a rare Grillworks grill. They cook the likes of salt aged lamb rump, wild halibut, roast aubergine and ox heart, although the menu changes regularly. Treat yourself to wine too – it comes direct from Latitude on The Calls.

Ox Club, Headrow House, Bramley’s Yard, 19 The Headrow, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6PU.

73. Salvo’s

Dishes at Salvo's, Leeds

Credit: Helen Turton

Salvo’s continues to be one of the finest Italian restaurants in Leeds. Impeccable service punctuates a meal that’s packed full of flavour, with the best produce from Yorkshire and Italy combined. Add their impressive wine menu and their Salumeria cafe and deli next door, and the Salvo’s experience is hard to beat.

Salvo’s, 111-115 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 3PX.

74. Zm Zm

Zm Zm Bakery, Leeds Kirkgate Market

Delve into the delights of an Asian bakery thanks to the arrival of Zm Zm at Kirkgate Market, in addition to their other home in Harehills. They’re putting their own twist on what people expect from a bakery, offering up the likes of naans, chicken tikka pastries, baklava, tandoori pizza and Turkish bread – so treat yourself to something a bit different.

Zm Zm, Leeds Kirkgate Market, 28-34 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7HY.

75. Pasta Romagna

Pasta Romagna

There’s nowhere in Leeds, or anywhere else for that matter, quite like Pasta Romagna. You’ll likely remember the effervescent Gilda Porcelli, who used to serenade you with Italian classics while you picked from their menu of classic pizzas and pastas – she’s now retired, but her restaurant lives on with the same quirky ethos.

Pasta Romagna, 26 Albion Place, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6JS.