It’s actually been quite some time since we last went to the ‘proper’ Anthony’s on Boar Lane in Leeds. We’ve been many times to the Piazza in the Corn Exchange and the patchiness of that experience has been well documented in this blog. Great venue, good food, so-so service probably sums that up. I think we’ve forgotten the reason why we loved Anthony’s so much in the first place.
Saturday night rectified that. Dinner with our good, good friends Tim and Karen to celebrate a third decade anniversary (don’t ask, it’s complicated and I get it wrong anyway) and we decided that the best place for it was Anthony’s on Boar Lane.
Now this turned out to be an epic evening with a food experience to rival that of Murano (yep, that good).
It will be hard to deliver a blow by blow account of the evening as those of you know who have had the tasting menu can attest, the food comes thick and fast and to be quite frank, it’s almost impossible to keep track of what you’re eating and drinking. I’ve got some pics and I’ll see how the memory does working with the pics as a prompt.
Amouse Bouche was a rabbit terrine. Blinding.
Next up, grilled squid with curried granola and pickled onion. I just realised how ridiculous that sounds, but it was seriously brilliant.
Apologies, not a good pic this. But the smoked goose with oyster and kebab grebiche (only kidding about the kebab, although it does sound good) was outrageously gorgeous and hoovered up in seconds.
Salmon extravaganza up next. I probably think that the most salmony experince you’d get in the world would be as a bear clawing live salmon out of a river in Nova Scotia. And then this one. It had salmon eggs too and a really crispy bit of chicken skin. No, really. It was amazing.
Belly pork, deep fried squid ink spagetti and crispy cod eggs. I think. Either way, we’d had plenty of wine by now and the surreal food experience just kept getting weirder. The best thing was, every course just kept raising the bar in terms of culinary excellence and flavours.
Prior to dessert, I ordered the cheese course as an extra. The reason why there are no photos of it is because Tim and Karen eyed it up and expertly nicked as much of it as they could. If I’d have got out the camera, I would have missed it all. Seriously. By the way, it was cheese from the top drawer with an incredibly runny french thing, blacksticks blue and stinking bishop.
The dessert wasn’t the panna cotta Julie was praying for, but some weird concoction with ginger. Probably the least successful course of all for me, but still very good.
Tim finished off by ordering some lovely Spanish brandy type drink – it was deeply aromatic and had a wonderful dark chestnut colour. And it smelled like Bostik (private joke).
Food 10/10, Service 10/10, Ambience 9/10.
This is STILL the best restaurant experience for ‘event dining’ in Leeds. Yes, it’s pricey but the attention to detail and the sheer determination to make it perfect almost oozes through the walls. If you haven’t been yet, go. If you’ve been ages ago (like we had) then go again to remind you of the skill and care that goes into the food at Anthony’s.