Leeds Leads: The Best Restaurants in Hyde Park

The North Leeds neighbourhood might be synonymous with students but, says Zoë Perrett, the local restaurant scene isn’t to be sniffed at

Lupe’s Cantina Mexicana

Lupes Cantina Mexicana LeedsWhere: 204 Cardigan Rd, Leeds LS6 1LF

Why: Cardigan Road could hardly be called an exotic location, but this family-run cantina could convince you you’ve voyaged to South America for the evening – especially after a few margaritas. The food is as fresh and flavoursome as you’d hope from a chef-patron born and raised in Veracruz, and as colourful as the décor. Go with a group so you can eat absolutely everything.

Eat this: Tacos Ensenada; featuring generous hunks of Negro Modelo beer-battered haddock

Find out more here

May’s Thai Malaysian CaféMay's Thai Malaysian Cafe Leeds

Where: 225 Hyde Park Rd, Leeds LS6 1AH

Why: Run by a bunch of spirited Thai and Malay women, this no-frills café is rammed all of the time; as much for it’s fabulous food as for its location directly opposite Woodhouse Moor. BYO, ridiculously cheap and shockingly good, we’ve been known to eat here five nights a week and are yet to get bored of the extensive and authentic Thai and Malaysian menu.

Eat this: Som tam – a brilliantly crunchy, sour, spicy example of the quintessential papaya salad

Find out more here


Mogador cafe LeedsWhere: 142 Cardigan Rd, Leeds LS6 1LU

Why: Moroccan food’s a lovely thing: one of those cuisines composed of the best elements of a myriad of cultures. This jewel-box-like restaurant might not allow booze (sip mint tea instead) but it does offer up a lovely atmosphere in which to feast like an absolute Sultan – whether you’re in the mood for mezze or getting your trencher on with one of the gargantuan mixed grills.

Eat this: Pastila – a chicken and almond filo pie, unusually and deliciously seasoned with icing sugar

Find out more here 

SymposiumSymposium Greek Leeds

Where: 8 The Crescent, Leeds LS6 2NW

Why: This unassuming little BYO knocks out consistently gorgeous Greek food – probably because the lovely couple who run it are there day in, day out (except on Tuesdays when they close for a well-earned day off). We’ve eaten at the single table outside on a sunny evening and despite the abundance of drunk students I swear it felt more like Greece than Hyde Park Corner.

Eat this: Mixed grill platter, aka a Greek holiday on a plate. Opt for the knockout tzatsiki as your dip

Find out more here

Holy Mountain Kitchen @ The East Village

Holy Mountain Kitchen mexican food East Village Leeds

Where: 47-49 Brudenell Grove, LS6 1HR

Why: This self-styled ‘new-wave dive bar’ offers an abundant roster of reasonably-priced cocktails and currently hosts a residency from Holy Mountain – a pop-up cantina which knocks out both trad Mexican and funky fusion dishes with a signature feckless, reckless approach. Basically, these guys do whatever the hell they fancy as long as it tastes great – and by heck it does.

Eat this: Take the edge off an appetite with the Two Foot Nachos, then tuck into tacos. All the tacos

Find out more here

…AND ONE TO WATCH FOR: Aiyo Aiyo Leeds Deliveroo

Where: 75 Brudenell Grove, Leeds LS6 1HR

Why: Currently closed for summer, this bijou hole-in-the-wall joint has just a handful of tables and a place-your-order-at-the-till system. Everything on the beautiful little BYO’s concise, cheap-as-chips East/Southeast Asian-inspired menu comes in disposable serveware, but that’s the only thing you’ll be throwing away because the generously-proportioned food is just so damn good.

Eat this: Shitake congee – a savoury (and vegan) rice porridge that’s the ultimate comfort food

Find out more here

Love Leeds? Read more local restaurant reviews…

  • Matt Healy at The Foundry here
  • Ox Club here
  • Red Chilli here





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