Among the early nominees is Fleur Cafe, a day-to-night restaurant in The Light shopping centre with a focus on bottomless brunch, bottomless evenings and afternoon tea.
Consultant chef Bobby Geetha, who starred in Masterchefs: The Professionals, has infused his Indian heritage into the restaurant's innovative menu - working with owner Zack Issak.
He has entered Fleur Cafe into a number of categories in the Oliver Awards, hoping a win will provide a much-needed boost in what has been a turbulent year for the hospitality sector.
“It’s great recognition for businesses," Bobby said.
"Anywhere I have worked, in Dubai and London, I push our team, my chefs and the restaurant for awards. It puts us on the map, allowing the business to grow.
“I appreciate the Yorkshire Evening Post putting on the Oliver Awards - even before I moved to Leeds I had heard of the awards.
“It would be absolutely amazing to win a category. It’s been very hard for us to keep going and we’re doing so many things that haven’t been tried before, like bottomless evenings.
"That’s the way we have pushed the restaurant in these stressful times and applying for the award is a morale boost for the team - and me.”
Bobby's menu includes reimagined breakfast favourites, like smashed avocado toast with coriander and truffle hollandaise, along with pans and grills, sandwiches and tempting desserts.
From pink cheese samosas and masala baked beans, to rose milk Victoria Sponge and baked coconut pancakes, the bottomless brunch menu is served until 2.30pm - before diners can enjoy a 'bottomless evening' menu with larger plates and unlimited drinks.
“I wanted to bring my heritage to the food," Bobby added.
"It should look international and amazing, but still incorporating flavours from my childhood memories. The food is very personal to me.”
Highlighting the best the city's food and drink scene has to offer, the Oliver Awards are the 13th hosted by the YEP.
Industry experts will judge a range of categories, picking their shortlists and eventual winners which will be announced at a ceremony at Queens Hotel on March 28.
Nominations are now open and can be submitted by businesses at www.oliverawards.co.uk.
Entries close on February 16 and sponsorship packages are still available - click hereto get in touch.
Full list of categories:
- Best Cafe/Deli
- Best Gastro Pub & Brewery
- Best Brunch
- Best Local Produce
- Best Bar
- Best Speciality
- Best Family Friendly
- Best Use of Outdoor Space - NEW
- Best Customer Service - NEW
- Newcomer of the Year
- Best Takeaway Offering - NEW
- Best Fine Dining Experience
- Chef of the Year
- Outstanding Contribution
- Overall Restaurant of the Year (all restaurants awarded at ceremony eligible)
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