Whether you’re celebrating or just indulging, here’s where to go for fine dining in Leeds.
Leeds has a reputation for the quality of its food and drink offering, so it’ll come as no surprise that there’s an abundance of fine dining restaurants here. From fancy tapas joints and posh steakhouses to that coveted Michelin star, these Leeds eateries will take you on a culinary adventure that’s worth every penny.
One of the most exciting fine dining restaurants in Leeds, Home is a collaboration between Elizabeth Cottam and Mark Owen. The former was a semi-finalist on MasterChef, while the latter was Head Chef of The Box Tree and The Star at Harome, both Michelin-starred restaurants. This venture is a relaxed take on fine dining, where you can enjoy a ten-course tasting menu of incredible seasonal dishes, like lobster with lime, coconut, pickle and curried bisque.
Home, 16/17 Kirkgate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6BY.
Matt Healy x The Foundry
He’s best known as one of the runners up on MasterChef: The Professionals in 2016, but Matt Healy is now winning over the masses in his hometown with a new restaurant at The Foundry. The food is ‘unconventionally British’, so you can expect classic dishes, cooked to his exacting standards and served with a twist in a restaurant that bridges the gap between traditional and modern. From lamb rump with crispy artichokes, broad beans and pancetta to Yorkshire venison with braised shoulder pie, fillet, malted cauliflower, pine nuts and raisins, there’s lots to love about this place.
Matt Healy x The Foundry, 1 Saw Mill Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5WH.
Vice and Virtue
Vice and Virtue is the first city centre restaurant from renowned chef Luke Downing. He whips up an ever-changing array of dishes for his seasonal tasting menus, which you can enjoy in a stunning art deco restaurant. Try inventive creations like Whitby scallop with strawberry, celery and wild rhubarb or wood pigeon with black pudding, raspberry balsamic, charred scallion, giralle and onion rings, all of which are made with locally-sourced and ethically produced ingredients.
Vice and Virtue, 68 New Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6NU.
Issho is a rooftop restaurant with views that look out across the rooftops. The menu is designed for sharing, so you can choose from a selection of premium sushi alongside bao buns and robatayaki dishes like pork belly with spring onion and shichimi. Head Chef Weike Zhao has come over from Australia, where she worked at a string of 1 hat restaurants (that’s the Aussie equivalent of a Michelin Star), and she runs special Chef’s Tasting events where you can get hands-on with the food.
Issho, Victoria Gate, George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7AU.
The Swine That Dines
Jo and Stuart Myers have made their dream a reality. They closed The Greedy Pig earlier this year to focus entirely on The Swine That Dines, a creative restaurant that serves an ever-changing menu of small plates that will challenge you to rethink your preconceptions about food. This is nose to tail dining, using ingredients you wouldn’t normally consider, but for one weekend a month, they switch to roots to shoots dining to offer an equally impressive vegetarian menu. Expect dishes like chicken liver with juniper, white Cabbage and green peppercorns.
The Swine That Dines, 58 North Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7PN.
If you’re looking for a special dining experience in Leeds, Shears Yard is just the ticket. They’ve got fine dining nailed, but in their own way. Their menu is constantly evolving, making use of seasonal and local produce to create dishes that are visually and gastronomically stunning. But that’s not all. They also offer a five-course tasting menu, with dishes like ham hock black pudding with bacon roly poly and beer-pickled onions. Look out for their food and drink pairing events too.
Shears Yard, 11-15 Wharf Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 7EH.
The Man Behind the Curtain
With the city’s first Michelin star in a decade under its belt, The Man Behind the Curtain has cemented its reputation as the fine dining venue to go to in Leeds. Renowned chef Michael O’Hare makes the most of unusual combinations and ingredients to create technical tasting menus that will blow you away. Think wagyu beef with olive juice, hand massaged octopus with capers and lemon or hot and sour sea urchin – this is a truly unique dining experience, so expect the unexpected.
The Man Behind the Curtain, 68-78 Vicar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 7JH.
Dill & Bay
You might not have discovered Dill & Bay yet. It’s a fine dining restaurant in Rothwell that has a relaxed atmosphere. Head chef and owner Simon Jones picks up where he left off with his Passion Supper Club, creating inventive menus with local ingredients. Start with a savoury goat’s cheese filo tart, followed by marinated kangaroo rump with braised red cabbage, bubble & squeak mash, and cranberry & whiskey jus.
Dill & Bay, 19 Marsh Street, Rothwell, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS26 0AG.
As posh restaurants go, Crafthouse is top drawer. It blends an incredible space with amazing views and brilliant food. Led by Executive Chef Lee Murdoch, expect well thought out dishes that make the most of seasonal ingredients. They do a special 7-course tasting menu, designed to reinvent classic dishes as vibrant plates of modern food, but their regular menu is just as special with dishes like grouse with a crispy leg, seared goose liver, black pudding rosti and roast beetroots.
Crafthouse, Trinity Leeds, 70 Boar Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6HW.
Dough Bistro was Luke Downing’s first restaurant, but in 2017, he decided to reinvent it. With the help of Head Chef Laura MacLeod, he created Aperitivo, a refined take on contemporary Italian cooking. It’s a mix of small plates, pasta and pizza, cooked up with his signature creativity. You can indulge in dishes like baked cod with caponata, beetroot fondue and pickled cucumber or porchetta with black pudding tapenade, soft herbs, apple and mustard. They’ve even raised the bar on the pizzas with a choice of six different bases, including their signature black charcoal smoked base.
Aperitivo, 293 Spen Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS16 5BD.
We all know that France has an incredible culinary reputation, and Kendells Bistro certainly does it justice. They offer a romantic fine dining experience in an intimate restaurant, which is perfect for special occasions. The menu changes daily, depending on the fresh, seasonal produce they can source, and it’s written on the blackboard, which you can view with the binoculars provided. Expect traditional dishes like steak bordelaise, chicken suprême and confit de canard, all done with the panache that makes French cuisine one of the best.
Kendells Bistro, 3 St Peter’s Square, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS9 8AH.
Fine at Fettle
The alter-ego of Great George Street’s most popular cafe, Fine at Fettle is an evening pop-up that transforms the space into a fine dining destination. Their candlelit restaurant serves up a menu of intriguing dishes like curried waffle with pickled cauliflower and gochujang miso cream or pigeon breast with leek potato mash and red wine jus. The quality of the ingredients is really important here, so they work closely with small local producers to bring together the very best flavours. Plan your visit wisely, Fine at Fettle is only open after 6pm from Thursday to Saturday.
Fine at Fettle, 73 Great George Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3BR.
If you love steak, Gaucho is the only fine dining restaurant you need to know about. This glitzy venue is the perfect place to delve into the world of Argentinian steaks, which is what Gaucho is all about. You’ve got four main cuts to choose from – lomo (fillet), ancho (ribeye), chorizo (sirloin) and cuadril (rump). Choose from their special meat board, as the expertly trained staff take you through the differences between each meat and answer all your questions. Couple your steak, cooked just the way you like it, with one of their hand-picked wines.
Gaucho, 21-22 Park Row, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 5JF.
Salute at The White Swan
Tucked away within the same building as The White Swan pub in Rothwell, Salute is a long time favourite if you’re looking for quality, rustic Italian dishes in a relaxed environment. It’s well worth heading out of town for, as you tuck into expertly crafted plates like slow roast belly pork or chicken, chorizo and red pepper risotto, with one of their glasses of Italian vino. You’ll soon see what the fuss is about.
Salute at The White Swan, Church Street, Rothwell, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS26 0QL.
Spanish tapas is usually an informal affair, but not at Ibérica. It’s a posh restaurant that prides itself on the quality of its offering, whether that’s the glamorous decor or the exquisite Spanish cuisine. Their produce is worth noting, as they handpick each supplier and import it directly from them, cutting out the expensive middleman. It’s then whipped up into dishes by renowned chef, Nacho Manzano, from charcuterie boards piled high with jamón Ibérico to tapas plates like fried chorizo lollipops and octopus with potatoes and pimentón de la Vera – Iberica is a truly unique tapas experience.
Iberica, 17a East Parade, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2BH.
Heaney & Mill
Headingley has its own little fine dining institution in the form of Heaney & Mill. It’s a relaxed affair, and you can expect to ease into the day with scrumptious breakfasts before they start serving a menu of creative dishes from lunch through to dinner. Indulge in beautifully presented and utterly delicious plates like pan-seared king scallops with Serrano ham, cauliflower veloute, truffle and balsamic dressing or venison with blackberries, bacon, Jerusalem artichokes, pecan and maple syrup. Every element of the dish has been thoroughly thought out and the service is a pleasure too – but that doesn’t mean the price leaves you out of pocket, it’s surprisingly affordable.
Heaney & Mill, 48 Otley Road, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS6 2AL.
Feed is the latest restaurant from Luke Downing, the man behind Vice & Virtue, but this time he’s drafted in Jonathan Hawthorne of XO Supper Club fame to help bring the space to life. He’ll be heading up the kitchen, cooking up a mix of everyday favourites and boundary-pushing small plates. With a mix of impeccable cooking, carefully sourced ingredients and unusual flavour combinations, they’re bringing fine dining to Pudsey – and it’s already immensely popular.
Feed, 163 Richardshaw Lane, Pudsey, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS28 6AA.