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Food Review Red Hot World Buffet

Rebecca Ryder goes around the world in 80 dishes

Food Review: Red Hot World Buffet

If you feel a little taken aback on beholding Leeds’ newest addition to all-inclusive dining, you’re not alone. Going about 15 steps further than existing multi-cuisine restaurant Spice Quarter, Red Hot World Buffet (they decided against Spice Pentadecagon) in the Light complex encompasses every nationality from Thai to Swiss, Mexican to Indian, via English and Japanese. Oh, and plenty more besides. In the extensive self-service buffet area, rows and rows of counters proudly display a whole world (literally) of foodstuff hot and cold, sweet and savoury, mild and spicy, meaty and vegetarian. And so on.

So how on earth, one might wonder, can you possibly offer up so much eye-popping fare whilst simultaneously maintaining any sort of culinary credibility? Surely it’s not possible? And yet, Red Hot World Buffet actually do pretty damn well. The sheer amount of waiters on hand to see to all of the many, many tables throughout the vast restaurant floor indicate that they certainly aren’t shy on staff to hold things together here. And a venture into the buffet hall reveals that at least three different chefs stand out front at any one time to whip up dishes on request before your eyes. This is in addition to their colleagues toiling away behind the scenes of every section.

A teppanyaki plate of juicy prawns, shrimp, noodles and refreshing vegetables cooked in soy sauce doesn’t disappoint. Over in the Mexican neck of the woods, beef taco trays are continuously dished out, snapped up and promptly produced all over again. Little wonder; they are perfectly seasoned and the meat is cooked just right, succulent in its bed of tomatoes.

The Indian counter is home to lamb seekh kebabs and Bombay potatoes so tasty they wouldn’t be out of place at an Akbar’s or an Aagrah. If there is anyone who isn’t catered for here, they are one fussy-britches because the options go on to include pizzas, salads, pastas, curries, pies, a Swiss potato counter, a Louisiana grill, a sushi bar, starters of the dim sum, Indian and oriental variety, a bread and cheese section and even full Christmas dinner. The dim sum offerings in particular, though limited, are delicious and pleasingly authentic.

The selection of desserts is mind-boggling; how to refuse an orange-infused panna cotta, walnut brownie, tiramisu or white chocolate and ginger cheesecake? These tempting morsels only touch upon the countless sugary delicacies waiting to be plucked from their kaleidoscopic display. An ice cream parlour boasts yet another feast for the eyes, with every flavour from rum and raisin to mango sorbet and bubblegum, not to mention the wide assortment of accompaniments and toppings. If the gluttony guilt gets too much for you, then you can take your pick of the fruit medley too. Though you would be well advised to just go for the caramel crème bruleé instead, which is light and airy but creamy and packed with taste.

The décor is impressive, and a real effort has been made to provide a beautiful setting to your feast. The swish bar/waiting area upstairs is in keeping with the regal red interiors throughout, and the adjoining corridor to the main area downstairs is decorated to look like an aeroplane walkway. In the restaurant, wooden logs are nestled inside the walls to give a rustic feel, whilst mock-Michael Angelo paintings adorn the roof. The food itself is presented beautifully, with the ice sculpture bearing the prawns in the salad section making a striking feature.

At £14-15.99 for the evening buffet and £8-9.99 for lunch, you may pay just slightly more than most fill-your-face establishments in Leeds, but you definitely get your money’s worth. Surprisingly, the way-above-average quantity of food actually carries with it unexpected great quality too, compared to what you would normally find in places where the emphasis on fun and excess takes precedence over anything else.

As expected in such a vibrant and novel new eatery, there are lots of large parties present, even on a chilly Sunday evening when the ‘X Factor’ final is taking place. Yet it’s questionable how far their stilettoed feet could have taken them after such colossal consumption. On discovering that your tastebuds are satisfied as much as that hole in your stomach, you will find it difficult to resist eating from every stand, so just make sure you have a nice comfy sofa to go home to afterwards.

Posted on Wednesday 22nd December 2010

Red Hot World Buffet

44-48 The Headrow, The Light, Leeds, LS1 8EQ

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Comments on Food Review: Red Hot World Buffet

Comment by Deborah Oxspring

Posted on Mon 27th Dec 10 8:48 pm

i have been to this buffet only one once and it was a month ago and still it has a lasting inpression on me i went on a xmas party night we all realy enjoyed our time there the staff were so welcoming the place is spotlessly clean the food is amazing something to suite everyones taste i was so pleased with our evening i am taking my family there next month in january just to show them how amazing the whole thing is i felt a ease and very relaxed in this buffet i would recomend this place for anyone who is having a casual lunch or a works or family party so a big thank you to everyone at the world buffet at the headrow leeds for a enjoyable evening and see you very soon

Comment by Ashfaq Hussain

Posted on Wed 8th Aug 12 2:49 am

I went there last night throughout my meal I kept on being interrupted by a bad smell where I was sat I asked the staff who were very defensive and told me they could not smell it because they work there every day , they have had this mentioned by other customers a few times but they will make sure next time I come there I would not smell this bad smell as they will have the bins removed from the work station which was nearby .....wtf are these people for real .. Before I left the restaurant I vomited in the toilets and showed the manager the vomit and insisted that I be refunded for my meal his reply was that many people don’t want to pay once they have eaten ... After ten minutes of segueing he refunded me half the money I had paid when I said I would go to the local newspapers these people are dirty cheap hustlers not businessmen I would never go there again not would I recommend anyone to eat in any of there restaurants avoid avoid avoid

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