The Fisherman’s Lodge on Street Lane is, quite frankly, lovely.
It looks like you imagine one of those backwoods log cabins in the American wilderness would if you stumbled across it... apart from the fishtank, of course, which greets you more or less as soon as you walk in - this is a vestige of the restaurant which was here before - Marlow’s, which always felt slightly dowdy to me. It’s interior was cold and functional, staff were lacklustre and the food was okay.
Well, I am happy to report that the food is more than okay at the new place. In fact, the whole business seems to have been given a bit of a lift.
Exhibit A is the wooden-topped bar (it looks like a massive piece of ewe wood to me, with the bark still left on, so: rustic without being over-the-top pretentious). It beckons you to approach and there’s a nice little area to sit/stand in the foyer and have a pint and some chips maybe, as I saw one customer doing a few moments after we entered. Great.
The main restaurant area has also been given a thoughtful makeover, with thick brown leather booth-seats and a nice solid wood floor. There’s plenty of space too and at no time do you feel crammed in.
There’s an interesting menu too, with the usual fish/sausage n’ chips (they will even do you a grilled, i.e.: batterless, haddock) but there’s also do a ‘tapas’ range, with one dish for £6.50, three for £12 and five for £20. These include things like battered halloumi, salt n’ pepper squid and curried mussels, there’s even a haddock Florentine, which consists of a small fillet of smoked haddock, served on a bed of spinach with a poached egg and I’m not even going to mention the ‘Coca Cola’ ham hock (oh I just did).
So, you will be disappointed to hear I went for the cheeseburger (£11.50), while my dining partners munched on a kids fish n’ chips, kids’ sausage n’ chips and a grilled haddock (kids - yup, it was one of those ‘play it safe’ nigths), all of which came to £32.95, very reasonable, although I probably owe them some money because we ordered seven (count them) diets cokes and on the bill (I only noticed while writing this - honest) we were only charged for one at £1.95.
Moving swiftly on, all the food was marvellous, the bar is excellent, they do a range of decent ales, including San Miguel, at least three craft ales, ciders, including and a more than half decent selection of gins.
I will say one thing, though. Service possibly needs a slight (not much) improvement. We sat there for a good five minutes before even being offered menus and then I had to ask for drinks (and later refills) but that aside, this is a wonderful little restaurant which is a pleasure to spend some time in.
Address: 391 Street Ln, Leeds LS17 6HQ