For his first assignment, our new writer Dan Duggan headed to North Leeds’ recent arrival on the gastronomic scene, Chophaus.
Editor’s note: Currently, Chophaus is offering takeaway only, until the restaurant can be open again.
Our first impressions as we had approached were of a wonderful vista and a sense of an ambience which would suit us very well indeed. Once inside we were greeted with a warm welcome and a firm handshake.
We were introduced to various menus: the lunch, a la carte and the steak. Whilst we deliberated, we sampled the Pinot noir, which was music to the tongue and palate and therefore highly recommended. After some time (there was no pressure) we decided to opt for one meat dish and one fish. I opted for the seared king scallops with wild mushrooms and winter truffle at £12.50. This proved to be an excellent choice – well presented, rustic and smelling somehow comforting. Perfection!
My companion’s dish was Balsamic, salted chicken wings, priced at £7.50 and as flavoursome is it comes, cooked to retain the moisture, yet falling easily off the bone. On hand for messy eaters was Tom, one of the waiters, armed with wipes. A nice touch.
There’s something about the pause between courses. It’s an opportunity to reflect on those flavours, to focus on the excellent wine and company, and also to anticipate what comes next!
What came next was my main – Pan roast cod with onion gnocchi, broccoli purée and shrimp jus at £16.00. Apart from the great use of colour, which is always a winner, the aromas were amazing. Seasoning is subjective, I know, but just a touch more on the cod would have ensured the standard of the previous course. This was a clever combination of ingredients, creating a party in the mouth (and everyone’s invited!).
My colleague had been asked how he likes his roast lamb (which came with glazed parsnips with red wine jus and shepherds pie). His medium/well preference was delivered absolutely on the mark. Again, the use of colour impressed, as did the perfect portion size, neither under- nor overwhelming. It was the flavour, however, which will be a lasting special memory – apparently absolutely delicious.
Yes, we went for dessert. We did. Call us indulgent, because we were.
The Creme brûlée’s crisp top covered a simply delicious filling with vanilla from the pod. Divine is the best word for this treat, and the delight continued with my colleague’s Chocolate and cherry cheesecake, emphatically declared as the best he’d ever tasted – a rich, scrumptious end to the meal. This is the stuff that smiles are made of.
Chophaus – a magical, wonderful gastronomic experience which I cannot recommend more highly to anyone who appreciates excellent service and wonderful food.
Whilst many of our local independent restaurants and cafes are closed, some, like Chophaus, are offering a takeaway service. Please help to keep them in business.
Normally, Chophaus’ opening hours are:
Tue: 11:30 – 2:30pm & 5:30 – 10pm
Wed: 11:30 – 2:30pm & 5:30 – 10pm
Thu: 11:30 – 2:30pm & 5:30 – 10pm
Fri: 11:30 – 2:30pm & 5:30 – 10pm
Sat: 11:30am – 10pm
Sun: 12 – 6:30pm
Book a table: email@example.com or call 0113 226 0660
You’ll be heading to: Louis House, Princes Ave, Oakwood, Leeds LS8 2FA
Photography by Dan Duggan and Tim Miller.