Colourful café serving pocket-friendly renditions of classic Middle Eastern dishes
Located at the heart of the rough ‘n’ ready Kirkgate Markets, Café Moor is not exactly embedded in glamorous surroundings. However, with its exotic eastern and North African cooking, amazingly cheap snacks and meals, and the freshness of everything served, it’s the sort of place where you’ll impress your dining companion with your knowledge of off-the-beaten-track and pocket-friendly cuisine. Having stepped into the wrought iron and Yorkshire stone palace of one of the largest indoor markets in Europe, the first impression of Moor is colour, from the counters piled high with goodies, to the red and green drapes around the serving windows.
Approaching the tiny, covered eatery is like stepping up to a miniature version of a Moroccan souk, with all the energy, fantastic smells and vibrancy of the food on offer beckoning the peckish. The serving counter holds huge bowls of houmous sprinkled with paprika, as well as dolma, or stuffed vine leaves, dishes of salad and huge bunches of mint to make the free mint tea offered with any meal or sandwich. Olives, roasted vegetables, flatbreads and spices seem to fill every available space, ready to be whipped up into a tasty treat by the lightning-fast and cheerful staff.
A chicken, lamb or vegetable tagine in a pot is the most authentic eastern dish found this far from the equator, but there’s a huge selection of other lunch mains, including jam-packed shawarma sandwiches, ‘bourek’ stuffed filo parcels, soup served with bread and mhadjeb – an Algerian speciality of stuffed dough squares – followed by a virtually obligatory baklava. None of the dishes cost more than £6, with most starters/snacks priced at £2 and a typical sandwich costing £3.50.
Café Moor may be one of 800 traders in the market and a small fish on the thriving Leeds restaurant scene, but its food and optimism will leave such an impression that you’re likely to return again and again.
|Venue name:||Café Moor|
Unit B 1904
34 George Street
|Opening hours:||Mon-Sat 10am-5pm|