A Nation of Shopkeepers Leeds review: What I thought of my drinks in the charming courtyard of this pub
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I can’t count the number of times I have walked past the pub on Cookridge Street; it’s in the heart of the city centre, just a short walk from The Light. And on a Thursday evening, I finally decided to give it a try – making my way into its charming courtyard with a friend. It was bustling, especially considering it was a weekday, and the courtyard is deceptively spacious.
We ordered our first round of drinks and my guest went for a yuzu margarita, a drink he enjoyed so much he ordered it again later. I opted for a cider and then the pub’s on tap, non-alcoholic lager, Lucky Saint, which was made with four natural ingredients including pilsner malt, Hallertau Hops, spring water and classic lager yeast. These four drinks cost us a total of £28.70.
While the lager was not quite suited to my taste, I appreciated the pub’s efforts to cater for all types of people who walk through its doors. The menu is already extensive with wines, cocktails, beer and non-alcoholic options, and the pub has also welcomed 15 hand-picked beers to its collection – on rotation daily – to introduce a better choice of ‘free-from’ drinks.
Many will know A Nation of Shopkeepers for its live performances, DJs and pub quizzes – its capacity to hold 850 people makes it a highly attractive venue for these events and the courtyard makes for a gorgeous backdrop to parties, too.
It’s also very well known for its food offering, and we couldn’t resist trying it out. I ordered the dirty fries and cauliflower wings while my guest got a burger, all priced on the lower end for a city-centre pub, large in portion size and mouthwateringly tasty.
The temperature dropped and we made our way indoors, greeted by loud groups of people and smiley staff despite the late hour. The easy-going and comfortable atmosphere inside made for the perfect end to the night, and we couldn’t resist one final drink – a yuzu, white grape and apricot fizz.
The drink, topped with dried orange, was beautifully presented but also struck the perfect balance between sour and sweet. It rounded the night off nicely, for the price of £9.50.
With reasonable prices, a brilliant atmosphere and a beautiful courtyard for the warmer evenings, I can see what makes this pub such a hit.