Bar review: Roxy Ballrooms, Leeds

PIC: Bruce Rollinson
PIC: Bruce Rollinson
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Pool tables have long been a staple of the bar room.

But to call Roxy Ballrooms a pool hall would be doing the venue a massive disservice.

Barfly: Roxy Ball Room, Albion Street.  (BR1001/70b) 17 December 2013.  Picture Bruce Rollinson

Barfly: Roxy Ball Room, Albion Street. (BR1001/70b) 17 December 2013. Picture Bruce Rollinson

Established just over a year ago, the venue is a play room for grown-ups, grown-ups that is with a love for fine ale and cocktails.

With a name one more commonly associates with the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles, it is fair to say this place matches the iconic US venue for what it can offer is customers.

As well as an array of top quality pool tables, Roxy Ballrooms offers mini-golf, ping pong tables and even the chance to play beer pong, the craze much loved of American college kids wherein they take turns to throw ping pong balls into beer cups, with the loser having to drink from said cup.

Booking ahead is a must, such is the popularity and intrigue that this venue has inspired since its opening.

Its clientèle is everything you would want from a city centre bar; urbane, relaxed and chic.

Roxy has an audience and it’s one you want to be part of.

The venue is located close to Wilkinsons on Albion Street, just opposite the food outlets of Trinity Leeds.

The mini-golf course invites drinkers to take on a variety of trick shots to prove their worth. Celtic Manor it is not but the skill level required to pull off the shots is not for an amateur.

The real draw however is the pool and ping pong. My friends and I have our own pingpong table, with plenty of space to get a decent doubles game on the go, even if my own efforts are some considerable distance short of the standard that would get me into the Olympic Games.

As mentioned the drinks offering is first class.

The craft ale which Leeds is becoming a centre for is bountiful and first class.

My choice, recommended by a friend, is Mary Jane, a fantastic brew that will become my preferred selection whenever I see it on tap.

Housed in kegs displayed behind the bar, the owners hold no quarter for second best brews, something that becomes very clear early on.

There are a variety of cocktails too, with the barmen and women offering a range of pitchers and individual drinks to satisfy even the most narrow or selective of tastes.

Leeds has had a long-standing reputation for offering one of the best night’s out in the country.

To enhance this reputation is a tall order but the guys behind the Roxy venues, including the nearby bowling alley and new venue they are preparing to launch have managed this with aplomb.

I leave in high spirits and proud to live in such a vibrant and edgey city that can give birth to such amazing venues.

All hail the Roxy.

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