From time to time I really have to take a moment to appreciate how jolly lucky I am, I mean I get to work for myself during the day and in the evenings I get to attend fabulous events, best of all evening jaunts come in the form of foodie nights.
Leeds is going from strength to strength when it comes to its culinary offerings, from pop ups to BBQ joints and casual dining to fusion foods. Last year Pink Shed popped up in Leeds Trinity and I missed out on a seat, so imagine my utter delight when Amy and I were invited along to the preview evening last week. Pink Shed kicks off Leeds Food & Drink Festival, a celebration of all the city has to offer. Just 700 people will be lucky enough to dine in the Pink Shed, they are the hottest ticket in town but if you’re lucky and super snappy you might just nab a spot!
Stepping into the Pink Shed was just like stepping into another world, far from the hustle and bustle of Trinity Kitchen, it was a candle lit back garden, a haven for sure. The walls splashed with graffiti, crates enveloped in flowers and church candle lighting. A perfect accompaniment to this idyllic setting was La Casita, a new tapas restaurant that recently launched in the chic Yorkshire town, Ilkley.
Of all the wondrous things about the Pink Shed, I think the most thrilling was not knowing who would be delighting our taste buds, although I agree that anticipating eating food you love does wonders for the senses, being kept in the dark does much the same. However, I would say its not one for the foodie-challenged or timid souls, you need to go in with an open mind and and eager set of taste buds!
To say that La Casita spoilt us really wouldn’t do them justice, put aside whatever preconceived ideas you may have of high street tapas and instead be enthralled by the journey through España they take you on, starting, as all tapas meals should, in my humble opinion with sangria and olives.
I must admit that despite being from Yorkshire; meat, potatoes and two veg is not my go to dining style, I have always suffered from menu envy so the tapas way of life thrills me no end, from the selection of yummies to the never ending bombardment of flavours and textures.
Our edible expedition went a little like this, blue cheese, pear & walnut salad which wandered magnificently over to braised ox cheeks (sweet lord you need to try these), which then speedily slid sideways towards salt cod croquettes served with aioli & the most delicate of poached quail eggs, then it was all about the asparagus with beautiful sharp cheese & mushrooms, but by far and away the dish that blew my mind was the aubergine caviar seasoned with cumin and served atop perfectly crisp bread. If I shut my eyes and think about it I can taste it all over again, heavenly.
Thanks to Amy’s wonderful photography skills, you can now take a few minutes to immerse yourself in the utter delights of our meal, try not to drool on your keyboard…
The whole evening was a thrill, from the food and the company to the stunning Rose Cava we happily supped our way through. All of the dishes that we delighted upon in the Pink Shed are available on the menu at La Casita, so if this post has left you wanting more, you know where to find it!
The final instalment of our meal were heavenly churros, nestled with warm sweet chocolate which were so spectacular I didn’t get chance to snap a picture, you’ll just have to trust me when I say they were moorish. We toasted the chef and the staff with a shot of honey liquor. I cannot remember the last time my taste buds or tummy was so satisfied. Thank you again to La Casita and the team at the Pink Shed for a truly memorable night.
To find out more about the Pink Shed you can follow the hashtag on twitter #pinkshed and if you are lucky enough to have nabbed a spot at the table please let me know how much you loved it!