Restaurant reviews

Leeds’ newest fine dining restaurant Vice and Virtue combines style with substance

As we were away in Sicily enjoying some late summer sun, our good friends Clair and Paul had the chance to review Vice and Virtue on our behalf…

As people who enjoy a bit of fine dining, and even a Michelin star meal on occasion, we were very excited to hear about the new fine dining option opening in Leeds city centre.  Vice and Virtue has been established as a cocktail bar in Leeds for a while now, but this was the first time we had the chance to visit.

From the outside, it looks very unassuming but once inside, you can see that a lot of care has been taken to create a pleasing atmosphere. On the first floor is the cocktail bar with its dimmed lights creating a cosy mood. The new restaurant is up another flight of stairs and is much lighter. The first thing that caught our attention was the proximity of the kitchen. The busy chefs are part of the dining room, with the option of eating next to the pass if the impulse grabs you! All the staff we encountered were polite, professional and knowledgeable – always a big plus!

We had the 5 course tasting menu, although a higher number of courses is available if you feel extravagant! Each course is featured around a key ingredient. This can be great, although it was a bit of an issue for us when it came to the ‘beet’ course as neither of us is a fan of the beetroot. We were also offered the customary amuse bouche  – in this case a delicious ravioli with mixed vegetables.

Each plate of food was beautifully presented and explained by the waitress.

Our favourite courses were the Hogget Cannon, and Sticky Toffee. The former included some tender, well-cooked lamb served alongside a meatball-style creation rolled in chopped pistachio, which as well as tasting delicious added an additional layer of texture. This came served with baby vegetables, dehydrated mushrooms, and a mustard emulsion to create a delicious main course. The only downside, in our opinion, was the whisky glaze, which we felt overpowered the rest of the flavours.

Sticky Toffee was the second of two sweet dishes, and consisted of sticky toffee sponge, kumquat sauce, and a tonka bean ice cream. The gorgeous sponge contrasted perfectly with the smooth ice cream, and the sharp tang of the kumquat to finish made this dessert a joy to taste. We could easily have eaten a few more plates of this!

Other courses included Rainbow Trout, and a dessert consisting of a fragrant set milk, truffles and strawberry, which was a pleasant surprise, as we do not normally enjoy the ‘creme brulee’ type texture, but was surprisingly tasty!

Overall, we would recommend Vice and Virtue as a foodie destination for Leeds city centre.  With a regularly changing menu we would be happy to return and try more of their offerings!

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