For anyone living in the suburbs of a city, having a pint at your local often involves squashing into a traditional, cosy pub around the corner. In Chapel Allerton however, The Woods offers all the glamour of an upscale city centre bar without any of the pretentiousness.
We were lucky enough to be allocated a rooftop seat on a sunny day after booking several weeks prior, (outdoor seating is also available on the ground floor and balcony) and were met by a lively, chatty crowd of customers enjoying the renewed freedom of an afternoon pint. The area was packed out, though there was adequate room for social distancing, and decorated with trendy string lights, foliage and wooden panelling around the perimeter.
In spite of how busy the bar was, we were shown to our table promptly, though we did have to call the server back to ask how to order drinks (table service). Initially, we ordered a bottle of prosecco - £25 - which came quickly, thanks to the bar situated on the roof itself, and the server was very friendly in spite of evidently being rushed off his feet.
The prosecco was sweet and went down smoothly, proving good value for money in providing around six glasses in total. The drinks menu was broad, offering an ample selection of wines, beers, some cider, and, when we were visiting, aperol spritz.
All drinks came quickly after ordering with no mix-ups, and prices were reasonable for an upmarket bar, costing around the £5 mark for most beers and medium glasses of wine.
For anyone feeling peckish, The Woods also offers a wide selection of food, including popular wood-fired pizzas, sandwiches and lighter bites.
We’d booked a table for a three hour period, though with the sun shining, the excellent atmosphere and flow of refreshing drinks, we were left wanting more by the time we had to leave.
The crowd at the bar was young and friendly without being rowdy, while the servers were equally cheerful. From where we were seated, we were unable to catch a view of the city or of Chapel Allerton, though most seats - around the perimeter - will have been able to.
This is a bar that you could easily sit in long into the evening around a bottle of wine with some friends, or would serve you well as a first stop before heading into town once bars, pubs and clubs begin to fully reopen.
Address: Stainbeck Corner, 5 Stainbeck Ln, Chapel Allerton, Leeds LS7 3PG
Telephone: 0113 307 0111
Opening hours: Sunday-Wednesday: 11:30am-11:00pm Thursday-Saturday: 11:30am-00:00