SALT Craft and Cocktails Leeds review: Quality craft beers in a relaxed atmosphere in the city centre
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The region boasts a range of innovative brewers, including the likes of Kirkstall Brewery and Amity Brew Co right here in Leeds. SALT was founded in Saltaire but now has three bars in Leeds city centre – one in East Parade, one in The Calls and one in Granary Wharf.
I went down to the East Parade bar, which is on the site of what was once Craft Asylum #2, with my partner for some Valentine’s Day drinks. Neither of us were disappointed. It was not bustling as it was a bitterly cold Tuesday evening, but there were enough customers present to ensure there was an atmosphere, and the warmth of red neon helped to create a relaxed ambience.
Behind the stylish nature of the bar is substance, too. SALT do offer non-craft draught options such as Madri lager and Aspall cider, but their own range of beers is certainly worth trying – even if you’re not a huge craft lover.
I started off with a Jute session IPA, which was light and very drinkable but full of flavour with citrus notes. At £5.10, I also didn’t think it was particularly horrific value for a craft beer in a prime city centre location. I then tried Loom, a session pale that was deliciously hoppy and crisp and also went down a treat.
As the night progressed and I filled up on the beer, the cocktails available on tap started to become more and more appealing. I didn’t find them quite as enjoyable as ones that are mixed to order but they were enjoyable nonetheless and the appeal of having the taps is clear as they take very little time to serve.
SALT also runs a two-for-£12 offer on their cocktails, which don’t have to be the same drink. The rum punch was my favourite, meanwhile the hedgerow bramble was my partner’s pick. Service was incredibly friendly. As far as I could see, there was only one staff member in the bar but they were not fazed by the occasional influx and cheerfully talked us through the options and deals.
SALT may have healthy competition in the Yorkshire craft beer space, but I think the quality of their drinks and stylish nature of their bars will ensure a bright future.