The Adelphi LeedsDan Curley
A stone’s throw from the city centre, hunched on a corner on the southside of Leeds Bridge, The Adelphi Leeds has just reopened to much pomp and ceremony. This legendary Leeds lager lounge underwent a £250,000 refurb, keeping its original Victorian exterior and just adding a fresh lick of paint. It’s the innards that have been completely revamped, with old carpets and cheap upholstery chucked in the skip and replaced with new herringbone wooden flooring and a snazzy leather finish, each of its several rooms adopting a different colour.
A salad so alive I’m half expecting it to start talking politics
My visit today is to try out the new menu, something The Adelphi has spent almost as much time spit-shining than the interior design, in hope of cajoling a more culinary clientele through its heavy wooden doors. On entering, the red room to the right is clearly the primary dining space. So here I sit.
I start with the deep-fried Camembert, two warm lumps of luxury lactose with chicory and cucumber, a drizzle of pomegranate molasses and a welcome little pile of chutney. It is a glorious starter, cheese cooked to perfection with salad so alive I’m half expecting it to start talking politics.
It’s a Friday, I’m pescetarian, so the fish and chips seem the logical choice for main. It’s a handsome cod that when dressed in its light batter suit looks dapper enough to charm a mermaid. The fish breaks apart nicely, making it easier to scoop up with the triple-cooked chips and “crushed” (posh for mushy) minted peas, stirred in with a chunky tartare sauce.
The crunchy ice cream melts like your heart welcoming a new puppy
Unused to eating three-course meals at lunch, I’m struggling with the very idea of any of the desserts, and I’m pleasantly surprised when the chocolate brownie is served with a moderate-sized sphere of hazelnut ice cream. When the spoon hits the luscious warm brownie, it crumbles apart like Prince Andrew’s reputation post-Newsnight, and the crunchy ice cream melts like your heart welcoming a new puppy to the family. It’s not big, but it’s very nice.
The menu at Adelphi Leeds does change around a bit with daily specials and festive offerings so check their website. It also has a huge upstairs room that can seat 90+ people – perfect for Christmas dos – plus the rear garden area offers cover from rain and heaters so smokers are well catered for.