Pub review: The Owl Inn, Rodley, Leeds

The Owl at Rodley.
The Owl at Rodley.
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The Owl pub at Rodley has been through some turgid times in recent years. Not too long ago, it closed for a period, the reasons for which we shall not here pry into, but suffice to say this Enterprise Inn’s pub is now up and running and, judging by our most recent visit, is in better form than ever before.

The pub has always enjoyed a superb location (according to one source it is ‘located in the affluent suburb of Rodley’) and while it may not benefit from the passing towpath trade in the same way that it’s waterside neighbour, The Rodley Barge, does (it being right on theLeeds-Liverpool Canal), it is only just across the road from it and on a hot day, you’re likely to find both pubs heaving.

The Owl has a great outdoors area, with a little playground for the young ones, plus a carpark and beer garden with 10 tables.

Inside, you’re likely to receive one of the warmest and most genuine of welcomes going. We pitched up on a weekday around 1pm to find the place pretty much empty but the landlord was overwhelmingly nice and it busied up before we left.

Before we knew it we were seated and menus provided - they do a great line in ‘two for a tenner’ meals and our waiter even took our drinks order at the table.

The interior is spacious, there’s a pool table and dartboard.

The Owl is famed, apparently, for it’s Sunday lunches (this from said landlord, but I’ve no reason to doubt him).

There’s a good range of handpulled beers at the bar, including Yorkshire Blonde, Leeds Pale Ale, Theakstones and Silver King, these being rotated regularly.

Food-wise, I ordered Thai cod prawn fish cakes, served with salad and chips (£7.95), while my dining mate for the day ordered hand battered fish n’ chips, with mushy peas and tartar sauce (£7.95).

However, they were both on the ‘two for £10’ deal, so effectively £5 each, which, together with our drinks, meant the final bill came to a very reasonable £12.70.

The fish cake was lovely, albeit a little small compared to the fish my mate was tucking into but hey-ho. Otherwise, no grumbles about the food. It’s pub grub, for sure, but is clearly honest home-made stuff done with a fair degree of panache.

The atmosphere at The Owl is laid back and easy going and this is something which has been fostered by landlord Steve Armitage, who has been in situ now for about a year, and his staff, who are pleasant but not to the point of being overbearing or obsequious.

So, it seems like he’s onto a good thing and The Owl is a real asset to the area.

If you are going for Sunday dinner, just remember to book ahead.


The Owl, Rodley

Address: 1 Rodley Ln, Leeds LS13 1LB

Phone: 0113 345 5080

Score: 4/5