First opening its doors in 1994, Art’s is Leeds’ original café-bar with a well-established presence as the stylish, understated cool member of the Call Lane crew. With walls covered in local art and a laid-back bistro feel, the venue provides a chilled out setting to both drink and dine.
The bar’s drinks menu might not be extensive but it’s carefully crafted and reflective of the local cuisine and nature. The wine list is informative and descriptive, making it easy for you to decide if you fancy a “dry, herbaceous, aromatic” white or a “spicy, peppery and warming” red. If you’re feeling indulgent, there’s a decent champagne and sparkling wine selection or you could keep it local by choosing from the long list of bottled beers sourced from Leeds and Ilkley breweries. House cocktails specialise in classics and pick-me-ups such as the signature Art of Mixing – a refreshing spritz-gin-cucumber combo or an Espresso Martini for a more bitter caffeine kick. Whatever your drink of choice, it’ll go down well with the chef’s dishes that perfect British cuisine and offer up some great veggie options too.
Winning two consecutive awards for Best Café/Bar, Art’s plays its part in representing the best of the Leeds scene. Alongside local drinks and cuisine, the café-bar hosts regular six-week-long exhibitions for regional artwork. Restaurant and bar staff are not only welcoming and friendly, but also present your chilled, relaxed day or upbeat evening soundtrack.
Best Bars tip: Heavy weekend? Stop by on a Sunday for the perfect hangover cure — a roast complete with gigantic Yorkshire puds the size of your head.
— Mieke-Kyra Smith, @mieke_chu