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A contemporary performance space, eatery, bar and gallery all rolled into one. Food ranges from basic to fancy, and shows include jazz, film and more.
Although most of Leeds’ key places for nights out are city centre venues, every once in a while a suburban spot will find its place on the map. Seven Arts in Chapel Allerton is not only an independent arts venue, with the bar doubling up as a gallery, but is also a contemporary performance space famed for its gigs, fine wine, and impressive menu. The upmarket town isn’t short of quality places to drink and dine, but Seven turns an evening into a sophisticated, self-contained package of entertainment with a constant calendar of jazz, folk, blues, rock, spoken word, and comedy acts.
The bar staff have been accused of being tetchy with pernickety customers, the venue isn’t very child-friendly (despite a dedicated menu), and the service could be faster, but it provides a largely welcoming experience with a solid range of dishes and wines. Alongside the basic but wholesome options of soup, sandwiches, burgers and jacket potatoes, diners can choose from a range of mains that includes grilled haddock, mushroom risotto, quinoa with feta, and a good choice of mezze plates that are perfect for pre-show nibbling – all priced at around £10 (£11 for three small dishes). Sunday brunch is served from 10.30am to 3.30pm, and includes mainly light breakfasts and salads, all for under £10.
A modest bar serves a well-chosen range of wines, beers, spirits and soft drinks that can be taken through to the candlelit tables of the performance space. Each season sees a different listing of acclaimed films, both modern and classic, shown as part of Screen Seven, an intimate, alternative cinema experience for a very reasonable £6 (£4.50 concessions) on Monday evenings. A shining example of social enterprise success, Seven Arts ploughs its profits into supporting its stage and provides a unique space for the vibrant community.