If you’re looking for a way to grab a quick bite on your lunch hour, without the guilt, Hive is the place to go.
Hive is the latest cafe to open in Leeds, and they’re doing things a little bit differently. Oh, they’re just as obsessed with quality, locally sourced ingredients as all the rest, but here they’ve gone the extra mile to turn them into something that’s both tasty and good for you.
It’s the work of Andrea Bethell and her friend Roddy Dilasser. “We’re friends and we’re mums, and we thought there was a real lack of choice available for people that want nutritionally balanced food on the go,” she told us. And so, they decided to do something about it, by opening their own little cafe. “For us, the passion has really come from being mums, trying to feed our children nutritionally well-balanced meals. All the dishes have been created by ourselves, and are freshly prepared daily by our chefs, with an emphasis on taste, but also on ingredients that are really good for you as well.”
They’ve teamed up with chef Ian Kendrew to make Hive happen. He has over 10 years of experience to bring to the table and coupled with their passion for delicious, healthy food, it’s allowed them to create something very special indeed.
Their little cafe, which you’ll find at No. 1 Whitehall Riverside, is a bright, airy space on the waterfront – and it’ll be open from morning through to night, so you can pick up breakfast on the way to work or stop by for a drink after.
Breakfast comes in the form of breakfast burritos and bakes, with porridge, granola and smoothies for those of you who want something a little more traditional. For us, it’s all about the Full English Breakfast Bowl, which comes loaded with bacon, sausages, haricot beans, tomatoes and onions, all topped with a poached egg. It’s a healthy take on a classic dish, and that’s something you’ll see a lot of here.
But if it was up to Andrea, you’d be trying something a little less conventional, “The guacamole burrito has got avocados, tomatoes, spinach, chilli and coriander in a wholemeal wrap, and we serve it warm. It’s just absolutely delicious! It’s a great alternative breakfast dish. It tastes really fresh and fulfilling as well, and it is naturally low in fat.”
At lunch, it’s a different story. They pull out all the stops, with a selection of Hive pots, salads and soups to choose from. They’re all made fresh on the day, using local ingredients to create interesting combinations that are high in protein, but low in fat, salt and sugar.
From the Indian Spiced Cauliflower Soup to the Slow-Roasted Pork Pot with Apple & Mango, there’s a little something for everyone – but what should you try first? We asked Andrea, “The Vietnamese Pulled Chicken Salad is just really fresh tasting, it’s got chicken in it and Chinese leaf, kale, broccoli, and it is in a teriyaki marinade, so it’s really tasty but really fresh. It’s only 144 calories per portion of that, and it is high in protein and low in fat and sugar as well, so it feels great!”
And don’t think their healthy ethos means you have to skip dessert – they have nutritious cakes (chocolate and beetroot anyone?) as well as a range of energy-reviving power balls to get you through the afternoon slump. Couple it with one of their organic Café San Anise coffees and you’ll be all set for a productive afternoon. Alternatively, come back in the evening to unwind with a glass of wine, beer or spirits – try the Slingsby’s rhubarb gin and elderflower tonic.
Hive is a fantastic fast food alternative, in a great location – they even have their own little waterside beer garden, where you can enjoy a bite to eat or a drink. Check it out next time you’re in the area and let us know what you think.
Hive, 1 Whitehall Riverside, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4BN.