The Leeds food scene is growing. Here are all the delicious reasons you should be getting involved...
1. Award-winning street food
Leeds is home to British Street Food award winners Manjits Kitchen, Fu-schnikens and Fish&. You can find them at local events such as Brandon Street Night Market, Trinity Kitchen, Belgrave Feast, World Feast on Briggate and more.
When you think of eating at markets, burger and chip vans can spring to mind – you'll still find them in Kirkgate Market, but snuggled inside Europe's largest indoor market you'll also find more intriguing offerings such as Café Moor serving Moroccan food, May's Recipes serving Thai food, and Caribbean Café serving... well, Caribbean food. Fancy dessert? The Crêpe Hut will serve you up something sweet.
3. Thai food
Forget your standard Thai red curry, Leeds is home to small authentic Thai houses such as My Thai, the soon to be re-opened Thai Aroy Dee, and new London street food migrants Bangwok. Try something different with Bangwok's famous dim sum, pad thai or ba-mee moo daeng (wonton noodle soup).
The art is both on the walls and on your plate in The Man Behind The Curtain. Take a few hours out to feast on the ten-course tasting menu, featuring the likes of foie gras doughnuts, charbroiled oysters and desserts topped with potato foam. Absolutely bizarre, but absolutely brilliant.
The Belgrave is a music venue, comedy venue, bar and canteen that is also dog and child friendly. Permanent residents Patty Smith's have the reputation of the best burgers in town. Quite a statement for a city with over 20 burger places in a five-mile radius. If burgers aren't your thing Dough Boys are also permanent residents serving pizza by the slice. To top it all, every second Saturday of the month they host Belgrave Feast where street food meets the canteen with a rotating host of guests from all corners of the country.
6. Indian Food
Forget Manchester's curry mile as you'll find some of the best Indian food in Leeds. Bundobust is the love child of Prashad and Bradford-owned pub The Sparrow Bier Café and it's debatable which is more famous – their ale selection or their food. Tharavadu serves some of the best looking dosas in town and hot on their heels is Kerala who have recently emigrated from curry capital Bradford, also serving some of the best South Indian food in the city.
Friends of Ham are so popular they've had to expand to twice (maybe even three times!) their original size. Known to regulars as Fram, it serves artisan beer, specially selected wine, meat and cheese boards. A great first date place as there are plenty of board games and even Shuffleboard should you need to liven up the evening.
The Leeds supperclub scene is mostly run by those who have regular jobs by day and share their passion of food at night. The most popular clubs often sell out within hours, if not minutes, of tickets going on sale. Some to keep your eyes on include Dinner at the Manor, The Noise of Strangers and The Swine That Dines hosted by The Greedy Pig Kitchen.
9. Coffee Shops
Leeds has a wealth of independent coffee shops that not only serve some of the best coffee in Yorkshire, but also do a great line in nibbles. Pop in to Laynes for a sandwich, Mrs Atha's for an all-day breakfast roll, Cup and Saucer for a slice of cake or perhaps La Bottega Milanese for Italian pastries.
Meanwood is the latest suburb drawing young professional types in their droves. With all that disposable income follows great bars and restaurants. Alongside the pizza chains and kebab shops you'll find Italian tapas-style restaurant Zucco and The Hungry Bear with it's feel-good, belly-warming meals like its rich beef stew.
Homage 2 Fromage is a monthly cheese meet-up in Leeds. Every month cheese lovers get together to sample cheese on that month's theme. Grab hold of some tickets to fuel cheese dreams with night such as ‘Strange Curds, exploring the wonderful world of extraordinary cheeses’.
Leeds proved itself as a trendsetter once again with the invention of the Clandestine Cake Club. Cake enthusiasts meet every few weeks in a secret location – revealed to members a few days before – where they bring themed homemade cakes, drink tea and most important of all, eat cake. Clandestine Cake Club is now an international affair but you can be secretly smug attending a Leeds event knowing it's where it all began.
13. Gluten-free dining
2 Oxford Place is a 100% gluten-free restaurant where coeliacs can dine worry free, and vegans and vegetarians will be spoilt for choice. There's gastropub-style food on offer, or you can make a reservation for afternoon tea for that special treat before tackling the shops.