HOW LUCKY is Leeds? It has more than its share of charming old pubs and they don’t come any more appealing than the Adelphi.
If you have never been here before, I wholeheartedly recommend it to you, if only to marvel at the marble entrance and the opulent architecture on display.
This pub was once a showpiece for the nearby Tetley’s brewing empire, just over the famous bridge where the first motion pictures in the world were filmed in 1888 by Louis Aime Augustin Le Prince.
We were seduced by The Adelphi’s setting. Victorian wood and glass panelling, tiled fireplace, brass fittings and wonderful windows make for wonderfully evocative reminders of a bygone age, even before we sat down in the taproom.
The room was elaborate enough but it turns out it is the least decorative of the lot. Elsewhere on the ground floor are far more superior lounges each with a gentleman’s club ambience.
It turns out food is one of the principle attractions here. Regulars tell us Sunday lunches are to die for.
The red pepper and quinoa burger with fries or roasted beet and pickled walnut salad at £9.50 sounded interesting, as did guinea fowl breast stuffed with spinach and pecorino, roasted butternut squash and stem broccoli for £14.50. Never mind. We were here to drink not dine.
This may have been a Tetley’s ale house but the offerings are far more extensive these days.
We found Leeds Pale Ale (£3.70) to be as good as ever and Lord Marples’ Cask (£4.25) by Derbyshire brewery Thornbridge, was a excellent - a dark amber drink with light toffee aromas and a touch of caramel.
Kirkstall’s Virtuous IPA (£4.65) was great, too. Light, fruity and refreshing, it is a much-loved beer and well deserving of the praise.
The Adelphi has a pretty impressive range of lagers and beers. Locally-brewed Leodis, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and smooth, balanced Bluepoint Toasted Lager are amongst the best in the daily draught range and there is a craft selection, too, plus a seasonal rotation of WIGIG (‘When It’s Gone, It’s Gone’) speciality kegs.
Our party also had a Sandbox Chenin (£6.35), which is a lively South African wine with, alive with green apple, fig and an almost grassy aroma on the pallet.
Overall, this is a truly tremendous Leeds pub which deserves some more exploring. The Adelphi could and should make more of its heritage. Few places can equal it in terms of heritage and while many traditional pubs have succumbed to the lure of modernisation, here the sense of history is still treasured.
Factfile: Adelphi, 1-3 Hunslet Road, Leeds