Review: Jack-Pots, Wellington Street, Leeds city centre

Jack-Pots, Wellington Street, Leeds.
Jack-Pots, Wellington Street, Leeds.
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AT WHAT was the biggest annual get-together for the potato industry, BP2015 in Harrogate, last November, the talk was of a determination to shatter the common misconception that potatoes are fattening and that the misunderstood tuber does fit in with convenience food culture.

If you were in any doubt about the latter, then a visit to Jack-Pots will set you right, for this is a veritable mecca of potatoes for those on the go.

Jack-Pots, Wellington Street, Leeds.

Jack-Pots, Wellington Street, Leeds.

Set behind a plush glass-fronted exterior next door to Starbucks, the eatery offers both a breakfast and a lunch menu with options to either takeaway or dine in.

Half a dozen simple tables and pine chairs are scattered tightly together, tearoom-style, in a corner off to one side of the counter which was heavily staffed and proving popular with office workers on my midweek, lunch-time visit.

White and green coloured walls are cast with light from the front window as easy listening music plays unobtrusively in the background. Apparently the inclusion of green decor represents its eco-credentials. All the takeaway packaging is either recyclable or biodegradable and the business policy is to buy British and local wherever it can.

Down to business and there is a choice of two spuds on the menu at this time of day: traditional Yorkshire potato and, costing a little extra, sweet potato. Next up it’s a choice of 11 fillings which take the price of your dish to between £3.55 and £5.20: from a simple three-cheese to the likes of smoked mackerel, Mexican beef chilli and lamb rogan josh.

Only one of the fillings was out of stock when I visited.

Besides the spuds, there is a choice of soups and yoghurt and fruit pots, as well as the usual array of hot and cold soft drinks.

Joining a Subway-style queue along the counter I had a Yorkshire spud with red lentil dahl made up - the topping consisting of generous portions of mango chutney, baby spinach, grated carrot, cucumber, feta cheese and natural yoghurt. The process took no more than two minutes.

As I was eating in, my order came served in a Moroccan-style ceramic bowl which looked good but presented a little bit of a challenge when mopping up the last bits of topping.

For a grand total of £6.50 I’d had the spud, a banana - there are fruit bowls on the counter - and a cappuccino. Perhaps a little more than most would spend on a workday lunch but a meal which left me full for hours.

There is free wi-fi for customers and loyalty cards for regulars. All in all, it is hard not to recommend a visit.

Rating: 4/5.