Little Oliver: Brasseric Blanc Leeds is a delicious way to get back to indoor dining
Walking into Brasserie Blanc on Saturday afternoon we were met with a sight we have been sorely deprived of for the past six months - the interior of a packed Leeds city centre restaurant.
The first weekend of indoor opening and it was fantastic to see almost every table full.
Covid measures have been brought in, including plastic screens inbetween tables, which means diners can feel safe and secure while enjoying the atmosphere of a bustling lunch or dinner crowd. After being ushered to our cosy corner booth we were left to study the menu, which contains plenty of vegetarian and vegan options so there really is something for everyone.
I plumped for the cheese souffle with Wyke Farm Cheddar sauce as a starter. Incredibly light and literally melt-in-the-mouth it was a perfect first course - and a cheese lover’s dream. My dining partner chose the potted Cornish crab with avocado guacamole, served with prawn butter and sourdough toast. Again, just the right amount as a first course, incredibly fresh and tasty but not too rich.
For the main I went for the vegan Moroccan mezze platter - roasted aubergine with a spicy harissa sauce, roasted artichokes, falafel with coconut cashew cream and two types of houmous, all with a cherry tomato salad and really fresh and crispy bread.
The plate was deceptive - my first thought was I should have ordered an extra side but it was so satisfying I struggled to finish the last few mouthfuls. But finish I just about did, because food this good should never go to waste without a struggle.
My friend chose the free range Cornish beef burger which came in a sourdough bun with homemade tomato chutney, garlic mayonnaise and French fries. It was declared the best quality burger she’d had for a long time.
All of this was washed down with a delicious (vegan) Van de Pays for myself and pinot grigio for my friend.
The staff were incredibly friendly, efficient and knowledgeable and went a long way to making our first real restaurant experience in such a long time a special one. Despite it being very busy they were so accommodating and were happy to take an extra drinks order after our alloted table time had elapsed, which we enjoyed outside overlooking the river.
At just over £60 for two courses and a glass of wine each it’s not the cheapest lunch in town - but for a treat (and let’s face it, we all need a treat right now) this outstanding restaurant is so worth a visit.