Bar review: The Brotherhood of Purists and Pastimes, New Biggate, Leeds

PIC: James Hardisty
PIC: James Hardisty
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I like the Brotherhood of Purists and Pastimes on New Briggate in Leeds, not least because of its title. And I like the title for two reasons...

1) it’s different, quirky, it conjures up images of 19th Century well-to-do gentlemen wearing knee-high tennis socks and braces, their hair Brylcreamed to within an inch of its like, chortling contentedly with one another in banter that ranges from what kind of snuff the prime minister of the day prefers to how ruddy well the Empire is doing; and 2) because when it comes to writing up the review (as I am now doing), such a long title means it’s that little bit easier to make the wordcount.

PIC: James Hardisty

PIC: James Hardisty

A few weeks have passed since we ventured into The Brotherhood of Purists and Pastimes but I have to say the experience was pretty good. It was part of an evening of sophisticated adult night time pursuits (or a bar crawl as it’s more commonly known) and we came to The Brotherhood of Purists and Pastimes toward the end of our night, by which time we had a penchant for drinks of a more virtuous (rather than voluminous) nature: what I’m saying it we fancied cocktails rather than beer.

And the Brotherhood of Purists and Pastimes did us proud, not least because it had a ‘two for a fiver’ deal on, which we duly took advantage of, ordering two white Russians. It’s a classic cocktail and it went down rather well. After that, in between chatting about Her Majesty The Queen and ‘the new politics’ (as men are wont to do at a certain stage on a night out/or in life in general), we switched to espresso Martinis, always a winning cocktail in my book, my only complaint being one of presentation as mine was served without the decorative coffee beans floating in the light brown froth. Still, a trifling point and not one which dented the overall experience. If you’ve never tried an espresso Martini by the way, it’s possibly the best was to round off a night, because aside from tasting great with a reassuring alcohol kick (that’s the vodka), it also kind of wakes you up a bit (that’s the espresso) and keeps you on your toes.

The Brotherhood of Purists and Pastimes opened in 2014 as a dedicated sports bar with no fewer than nine HD screens, plus bar games and so on. It also has a mezzanine, which gives it a ‘stadium’ feel, as punters can watch the screens from the broad balcony which overlooks the bar.

The downstairs has a mix of seating but close to the bar there are rows of raised benches, with slender stools on which to perch.

Overall, we spent £20 here (cocktails normally being £7 each) and it’s a place I would quite willingly return to, not least because I like saying Brotherhood of Purists and Pasttimes.


SCORE: 4/5