Historically our relationship with Leeds has been frosty. Over-hyped, over-priced and overly pleased with itself, we’ve often thought. But thanks to places and events like this, relations are thawing.
Having already taken in a couple of street-food vendors to serve their wares from within, Belgrave Music Hall invited a handful more to ditch the pavement and head inside for the day.
We hustled at the bar and talked strategy.
To the novice, starting with pizza may seem a naïve tactic when you’ve got an afternoon of filling your face ahead. The bread + cheese stodge combo usually being the perfect precursor to a little lie down.
Not so with the gear from Dough Boys. The slice we had was thin and crispy with enough savoury bite to necessitate buying another beer. (330ml for £5.50. I know.)
We could easily have stuck with the pizza for the duration, but we’re nothing if not game and to get full value from the cost of the train over thought we’d give Bundobust a try. Glad we did.
The wholesome Pav Bhaji managed to be both hearty and fresh, with its long-cooked-buttery vegetables and homely pulses in a pungent stew-sauce. You could kid yourself that it’s healthy, and easily order seconds.
Bundobust are back at Belgrave at the end of Feb, and are also opening their new place in Leeds in the not too distant future. Gonna be grand.
Less hardened souls may have taken a break at this point but we’re made of sterner stuff and managed to get into a bowl of mussels from Fish& before they later sold out. Not surprising really. Cooked with Brooklyn beer the mussels and their salty, heady broth in their vessel of crusty, dunky bread made a nice change to the ‘usual’ street food grub. Just wish we’d have tried the chowder, too.
By this point, reader, we were sozzled. And hunger, as it will when our old friend Mr Moonshine pumps through the veins, returned. It’d never really gone, to be honest. We needed a burger.
And so to Patty Smith’s, who, according to their twitter page “make dripping dirty burgers and we ain’t sorry”. Nothing to be sorry about, chaps. Described by some burger aficionados as the best burgers in Leeds, it was time to decide for ourselves.
Gourmet burgers, be gone, and take your polite cutlery with you. This is how a burger should be done. Trash with pride. Simple done well. No onion rings.
And the fries? Perfect may be a strong word to use but, like the San Carlo pizza a few months ago, these have raised the bar. Like Grandma’s chip-pan chips rebooted.
Top food, top drinks and a top place. We’re already planning a return visit. Well played, Belgrave Music Hall, and all who cooked within her.