Bigger DJs like it because it’s a very different experience

Bigger DJs like it because it’s a very different experience

This basement bar, tapas joint and cool hidden courtyard is legendary in Leeds for throwing free parties that, on occasion, have featured some of underground dance music’s biggest girlsdateforfree profielen names (Derrick May, Moodymann, Herbert). “The size of acts it gets is remarkable,” says Kristan Caryl. “Octave One had a three-metre table of live gear in there, that they just about crammed in! ” Pint from ?3.90, 7 Duncan Street,

The Reliance

This boho cafe-bar and (excellent, unfussy) restaurant is at the forefront of Leeds’ craft beer scene but, increasingly, it is also evangelical about natural wines. It carries up to 30 bottles from new wave makers (such as Olivier Cohen from Languedoc and Partida Creus from Tarragona), several served by the glass and all available to takeaway. “When natural wine really kicks off, the Reliance will be talked about in the same way we talk about the North Bar and beer,” says Cody Barton. In October, the Reliance will open Wayward Wines, a bar/shop in Chapel Allerton. Natural wine, glass from ?5.25, 76-78 North Street,

Outlaws Yacht Club

With its good-quality, snacky grub, interesting beer range, record shop and hair salon, there is a lot to love about this quirky, laid-back bar/cultural hub. Says Caryl: “It hosts Q&As, including the monthly Chinwag, with influential figures from music, art and fashion, such as Irvine Welsh or Andrew Weatherall, and at night it welcomes some of the world’s best cult DJs and “crate diggers”, from Ruf Dug to Japan’s Mori Ra.” Pint from ?3.75, 38 New York Street, outlawsyachtclub

“There’s a cool micro-scene of bars here, such as Outlaws, 212 or Doghouse (home to Paula’s Record Store), which boast audiophile soundsystems and book excellent local DJs and interesting guests,” says Laura Jones. “The last couple of times I went to 212 were for my friend Brawther’s party, Hazy Grooves. He’s a Parisian DJ who now lives in Leeds. The time before that, I met Victor Simonelli there, one of New York’s original disco DJs.” Pint from ?3.95, 6A Brewery Place, on Facebook


Due to the popularity of its Mill Hill neighbour Bundobust, a purveyor of awesome Gujarati street food, it is easy to overlook the less hip but similarly brilliant Tharavadu. Light and vibrantly spiced, its south Indian dishes deliver big, bold yet delicately nuanced flavour. As chef Ben Davy puts it: “Tharavadu turns what people associate with ‘curry’ on its head.” Main with rice from around ?7.50, 7-8 Mill Hill, tharavadurestaurants

The Greedy Pig Kitchen

By day, this unassuming cafe does a fine line in banging brunch dishes (such as smoked bacon, pig’s trotter, apple and home-braised beans on Leeds Co-Op sourdough), but on Thursday to Saturday evenings it becomes The Swine That Dines, when chef and co-owner Stuart Myers flexes his considerable culinary muscle across a seven-course sharing menu (?45 for two people, BYO). The dishes change constantly but might include polenta with charred leeks, blue cheese and hazelnuts or incredibly rich ox tongue arancini. “It’s well thought through in the way ingredients are put together,” says fan Afsaneh Kaviani, who runs a Leeds supperclub, Afsaneh’s Persian Kitchen. “Jo Myers [co-owner] is a very good baker, too.” Brunch dishes from ?6, 58 North Street,

Pizza Fella

After building its rep on the streets, Pizza Fella has settled into a modish, raw-edged space on Vicar Lane, where it dispenses A1 wood-fired, Neapolitan-style pizzas. “It’s brilliant,” says Davy, who has his own NY-style slice joint, Dough Boys, at Belgrave Music Hall. “On a Saturday night I walked past at about 9pm and it was rammed. I get a proper kick out of seeing independents busy.” From ?6, 114–116 Vicar Lane, on Facebook

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