This is how the food and drink scene in Leeds has changed in the past 10 years

The Owl, Kirkgate Market
The Owl, Kirkgate Market
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Back in 2010, Leeds' independent dining scene was in its infancy and many of the food trends we love today had yet to take off.

These are some of the gamechangers we've seen in Leeds over the past decade:-

Manjit's Kitchen

Manjit's Kitchen

The rise of street food

Street food has been the major food revolution of the 2010s and it embodies the popularity of casual dining. There are numerous well-known vendors trading in the Leeds area who have built their pop-up businesses from humble beginnings - perhaps the most iconic brand is Manjit's Kitchen. Manjit Kaur, from Chapeltown, started cooking vegetarian Indian dishes from her kitchen for delivery before converting a horsebox into a distinctive mobile stall. She's since expanded to open a stand inside Kirkgate Market's new street food hall, and in 2019 opened her first restaurant on Kirkstall Road.

Trinity Leeds have capitalised on the trend by dedicating their food court, Trinity Kitchen, entirely to a selection of up-and-coming vendors who are rotated several times a year. And the former Carpe Diem nightclub was transformed in 2018 into basement street food hall Assembly Underground.

Craft beer

The Man Behind the Curtain

The Man Behind the Curtain

Previously a marginalised drink associated with a certain type of older man, real ale and craft beer has enjoyed a massive revival over the past 10 years. In Leeds, a number of independent breweries have been leading the way. North Brewing Co was set up in 2015 by two friends who already ran North Bar, billed as the country's first craft beer bar - it opened in 1997. They've since opened a brewery and taprooms in the city centre and expanded the North Bar brand to Chapel Allerton as Further North, Meanwood as Alfred, Oakwood as Preston and Otley as North Bar Social.

Northern Monk's founders are still on board, and they now have two brewing sites as well as the Northern Monk Refectory in Holbeck, a converted former flax store which accommodates their taps and kitchen takeovers.

Kirkstall Brewery was re-established in 2011 and has since taken over the Kirkstall Bridge Inn. Ossett Brewery have a strong presence in Granary Wharf, where they own The Hop and Archie's. Saltaire-based Salt Beer Factory now run two Craft Asylum sites in the city centre.

Bundobust is one of the success stories of the decade - the brand combines craft beer with Indian street food and, after opening in Leeds in 2014, has branched out to Manchester and Liverpool with more sites to follow in 2020.

Supper clubs

Supper clubs represent a new way of experimental, intimate dining. Guests are invited to an establishment outside of its normal opening hours, or sometimes even to a chef's own home for a unique experience.

Former Masterchef contestant Afsanah Kaviani runs a Middle Eastern club called Afsanah's Persian Kitchen - the venue is only revealed after tickets have been booked.

Freda Shafi's South Indian-themed occasional supper clubs at Hessian in Oakwood are renowned. Secret club Dinner at The Manor is run by Dan Barnett and Susie Barker from their home once a month and they serve a range of cuisines - their evenings often sell out months in advance.

The Swine That Dines on North Street began life as a supper club but has since taken over the former Greedy Pig cafe as a small plates restaurant.

The Noise of Strangers bring guest chefs to cook in places like Temple Works and Canal Mills for special guests.

Then there's Elemental Bistro - they work with food waste charity The Real Junk Food Project to host sustainable dining nights at All Hallows Church in Hyde Park every month.

Fine dining that's fun

Pre-2010, fine dining was formal, traditional and pricey, attracting mainly an older and wealthy clientele. Now, it's relaxed, cool, innovative and hugely popular with millennials.

Home on Kirkgate opened in 2017 and is run by Masterchef contestant Elizabeth Cottam, from Gildersome, and business partner Mark Owens, who worked at The Box Tree in Ilkley when it had a Michelin star. They offer a nine-course tasting menu featuring seasonal dishes, and have just expanded to open The Owl, a gastropub on Fish & Game Row inside Kirkgate Market which uses produce from the nearby stalls.

The Ox Club opened inside Headrow House in 2016 - it's a contemporary British grill restaurant serving local produce and has featured in the Good Food Guide already.

The Foundry x in Holbeck's trendy Urban Village is the brainchild of another former Masterchef star, Matt Healy, who took over the former wine bar in the Round House building in 2018 and began carving out a new reputation. The restaurant serves 'unconventionally British' food and prides itself on pushing the boundaries. The Guardian's restaurant critic Jay Rayner has reviewed it.

Vice and Virtue on New Briggate has stunning art deco interiors and was chef Luke Downing's first Leeds venture back in 2018 - it serves seasonal tasting menus.

Black Market in Chapel Allerton is a relative newcomer, opening in 2018 and offering a suburban option for casual fine dining - it's since been joined by nearby supper club-style bistro Hern.

The Man Behind the Curtain is now Leeds' only Michelin-starred establishment, run by Michael O'Hare on Vicar Lane. It prides itself on the unexpected - hand-massaged octopus is one of the choices.

Kirkgate Market makes a comeback

At the beginning of the decade, Leeds' Victorian indoor market had changed little in 50 years, with traditional butchers, fishmongers and grocers still trading. Now, it's rejuvenated, and the old-school stallholders have been joined by a new generation of vendors. The market is now more diverse, multicultural and ethical.

The Owl has already attracted a visit from Guardian critic Grace Dent - the gastropub uses ingredients sourced from the fish, meat and game stalls nearby. OWT is another concept to incorporate market produce in its menu - it's only open for morning and lunchtime trade and the dishes change every week. It opened in 2018 and is inspired by French market canteens.

The street food hall is increasingly popular and now opens at night. Casa Mexica, Mr Mackerel, Kanassa and Banh & Mee are some of the inventive new stands.

New suburbs on the up

The likes of Headingley, Horsforth, Chapel Allerton and Roundhay have well-established dining bubbles of their own - but in the last few years, more areas have undergone their own evolutions and have developed their gastronomic reputations.

Farsley in west Leeds is a family-friendly village and it's suddenly got cool. Options include Mexican eatery Sabroso Street, Turkish and Italian at Olive & Feta, coffeehouse The Loft, pizzeria Grumpy's, local produce at the Mill Kitchen and several new bars.

Oakwood is an area that has become sought-after by young professionals, and new openings there, such as upmarket steakhouse Chophaus, brunch destination Hessian and Scandi vegan cafe Gron reflect that.

Hyde Park's student population also means its demographics are ever-changing, and their love of vegan cuisine has seen several meat-free cafes and restaurants open their doors, including Friends of Food and Vital Punk.

Personality chefs

Pre-2010, chefs were often content to remain in the background - but now, they are personalities and social media stars in their own right. This younger generation of culinary pioneers are happy to have a higher profile.

Among them are Matt Healy, who has added Oakwood's Gron Kafe and Thorner gastropub The Beehive x to his portfolio - The Foundry x remains his flagship.

Media-friendly Michael O'Hare has The Man Behind the Curtain and Elizabeth Cottam plans to expand her empire further by opening new ventures in the Kirkgate Market area.

Luke Downing is another name on the up - he's the man behind Vice and Virtue, Aperitivo in West Park, Feed in Pudsey, Nineteen by Dough at Leeds Golf Centre, and Dough in the City, although the latter has now closed. There's surely more to come from Vice Group in the 2020s.

Manjit Kaur is known for her social media presence and was even invited over the Pennines to serve food from her horsebox at Manchester City's end-of-season party in 2018. Her new restaurant has just begun trading and she is expected to extend its opening hours in 2020.

Another chef to watch is Gary Usher. His Elite Bistros group runs inventive, quirky restaurants in Manchester, Liverpool and other areas of the north-west, many of which are funded by Kickstarter pledges from the public. In 2019 he announced he was interested in opening a bistro in the listed wagon tower on the Wellington Place development, although he hadn't submitted any formal plans and Leeds Civic Society said it would be difficult to convert the small structure without damaging its historic character. Usher is thought to still be keen on expanding into Leeds in 2020.

Deliveroo and the dark kitchens

Deliveroo was founded in 2013 and began operating in Leeds two years later. Its cycle couriers, many of them students, have since become ubiquitous. The app rocked the traditional dining trade to its core by allowing users to order takeaways from their favourite restaurants on the high street. Deliveroo has taken over the industry to the extent that it now runs 'dark kitchens' on industrial estates - catering units where food is prepared for Deliveroo-only brands which have no restaurants associated with them. The main Leeds site is at Scott Hall Mills.

The ones we lost

Competition has intensified in Leeds and there have inevitably been casualties along the way. 2018 saw homegrown Indian street food chain The Cat's Pyjamas, founded by Chapel Allerton-based entrepreneur Alison White, collapse with the closures of sites in Leeds, York, Harrogate and Sheffield. The Headingley branch has since re-opened under new ownership.

Foodies were shocked when Friends of Ham entered administration in 2018 - the charcuterie and wine bar had been forced to close sister site Ham & Friends in the Grand Arcade several months earlier, but a bail-out saved the New Station Street and Ilkley sites, which remain open.

Health cafe chain Filmore & Union also went under in 2019 - they had already shut their city centre stand and branches in Moortown, Wetherby, York, Skipton and Harrogate followed.

What's coming in 2020?

An exciting range of new food and drink openings are promised for 2020. They include Indian street food restaurant Mowgli, a new taproom for Kirkstall Brewery, pizzeria Rudy's, and permanent outlets for pop-up vendors House of Fu and Doh'hut.

Hotham's Gin in Hull are opening a new gin school and distillery on Eastgate in Leeds.