FOR THE ULTIMATE DINING EXPERIENCE
For over six years The Crafthouse Restaurant in the Trinity Centre has been the hottest dining ticket in town.
From the moment you enter the private lift and are whisked up to the exclusive glass doored entrance you really feel this is the start of a really special experience.
Perched on top of the Trinity Centre it has wrap-around views of the Georgian Trinity Church and the wonderfully architectural rooftops of Boar Lane. Accessible by a small flight of stairs from the restaurant there’s Angelica’s with its spacious roof terrace high above seemingly everything in the city. A romantic place at night when the stars are twinkling – in fact it’s a romantic and exciting place at any time – it gives the feeling of being far away from the hustle bustle of the city. The perfect place to sip the most stylish cocktails in town.
Crafthouse not only has a reputation for its ambience and style but also for its food, further enhanced by the recent appointment of Murray Wilson their new executive chef.
Yorkshire-born Murray has twelve years of award-winning global experience including reaching the finals of Masterchef – The Professionals and his new menus are already taking the restaurant to a higher culinary level as I discovered.
Looking at his new menu it was a hard to choose from the nine starters on offer. My choice was braised pork cheeks with celeriac and pickled apple. Pork cheek is a good old Yorkshire cut of meat that helped housewives last century make their meat coupons and pennies go further to feed their family. Now it’s ascended, like Pork Belly to be a culinary favourite in high class restaurants.
The pork was tender and melted in my mouth whilst the wafer thin apple pieces made an excellent accompaniment.
My colleague ordered the Chicken liver and foie gras parfait accompanied by a very light brioche. The pate was very tasty with a strong flavour and was encased in a mandarin jelly giving a contrast of flavours.
For main I opted for the North Sea cod, mussels, Jerusalem artichokes and sea vegetables. As I have an allergy to mussels the chef arranged for my food not to include mussels. The cod was cooked to perfection. It was succulent, pure white and flaky yet still retained its strong flavour. The sea vegetables consisted of sea parsley and samphire that added a great fusion of flavours to the dish.
Scottish salmon fillet was my colleague’s choice served with leeks and elderflower hollandaise. The salmon was moist and beautifully cooked. The elderflower sauce was very light and gave an added flavour to the fish as often hollandaise can be bland and tasteless.
We chose side dishes of expertly prepared and cooked new potatoes with rosemary and French fries with espelette and Parmesan, crispy and light with a strong peppery taste they gave a kick to our main fish dishes. However our truffled orzo ‘n’ cheese was rather a disappointment as it’s consistency was far too heavy and lumpy and the dish was not as hot in temperature as it should have been.
Up until now service was perfection at The Crafthouse but after ordering our desserts it was 40 minutes later when they arrived!
I must admit my Solero exotic mouse though was well worth waiting for. The dessert’s inspiration is the famous ice cream brand of that name. The presentation was as exotic as the sweet itself – served with mango and passion fruit pieces and a scoop of coconut ice cream, like the ice lolly it was a fruit lovers dream and certainly ‘my heaven on a plate’
My colleagues Tiramisu chocolate bar was definitely one for the chocoholic and she needed (well I convinced her she did|) my help to finish it. The bar was encased in chocolate but the cake inside could have been lighter however the mascarpone was delicious and complimented the flavours of coffee, chocolate and the walnuts and what a generous portion!
Crafthouse once again proved itself as a purveyor of excellent cuisine, beautifully presented in its amazing atmosphere.
However the service seemed sporadic and often the waiting staff seemed confused as to which table they were attending to but despite this they still dispensed that old style restaurant service that one associates with the venue
Crafthouse 70 Boar Lane, Leeds LS1 6HW
Open: Mon 5.00pm-10.00pm; Tues/Wed/Thurs 12 noon – 10.00pm; Fri/Sat 12 noon- 10.45pm; Sun 12 noon – 9.00pm