Restaurant Review: The Whitehall, Leeds
The Whitehall is one of the best restaurants in Leeds for modern British cuisine.
The Whitehall has been open for a few years now, but I’ve only discovered it recently, and it seemed like the perfect place to go for my early birthday celebration.
I'd left it a bit last minute to book a table, so we were only able to get one for 6:15pm. We didn't mind having an early meal though, and the service was very relaxed so we didn't feel under pressure to give up our table by a particular time.
Even though we were there quite early, the restaurant was busy and had a great atmosphere. They do an early evening special menu from 5pm-7pm so this probably encourages more people to book early.
The Whitehall Menu
King scallops, with beetroot & green peppercorn glazed pork
Monkfish saltimbocca with saffron risotto
And for dessert
First up, cocktails!
I can’t drink at the moment whilst I’m having chemo, but they have an alcohol free cocktail menu. I went for an elderflower bubbly: elderflower cordial, apple & soda, and Nick ordered a pineapple martini, made with pineapple, passion fruit syrup and supasawa. Both were delicious!
Then onto the food… there is quite a big menu with so many things I wanted to try so I'll definitely be coming back again.
To start I had king scallops with beetroot & green peppercorn glazed pork, roast parsnip, potato crackling and pickled golden apple. This was amazing. The scallops were cooked perfectly, and all the components went well together.
Nick is gluten and dairy free, and they have a special gluten free menu. Our waiter also checked a few items with the chefs to make sure they were dairy free too. It was nice for Nick to have quite a few options as sometimes being gluten and dairy free, menus can be quite limiting. He had the boneless chicken wings in BBQ to start which he really enjoyed.
We’d also ordered some bread, but this didn’t come until after we’d finished our starters. The staff were apologetic about this, and took our first drinks off the bill as an apology which was very kind.
The bread came with oil, balsamic, and confit garlic which was so good. I’ve been meaning to make some confit garlic at home for a while now, and after enjoying this so much I’m going to make some next week (if you’re not sure how, I'd recommend the recipe on Melissa Helmsley’s instagram).
For mains Nick ordered a ribeye steak with espelette fries. The steak was cooked medium as requested, and the fries were nice (they could have had a bit more spice) but next time I think he would go for the triple cooked chips because we saw someone else had ordered these and they looked delicious.
I ordered monkfish saltimbocca with saffron risotto, parma ham, baby turnip & king prawn bourride sauce. This was so delicious, the fish was cooked perfectly and the saffron flavour was well balanced in the risotto without being too overpowering.
For dessert, the only thing for Nick that was both dairy and gluten free was ice cream and sorbet, but they had quite a few flavours to choose from.
I went for the ‘After Eight’ pudding which was a mint chocolate mousse with feuilletine crumb and mint chocolate chip ice cream. This was heaven, and it came with a couple of after eight mints too.
We had to wait a little while for our puddings to arrive, but one of the managers came to apologise for this and they also explained that they were down 3 members of staff that night which had caused the delay. We were more than happy to wait, but really appreciated that they took the time to explain to us what was happening, and the service was generally very good.
The meal was quite expensive, especially considering we didn’t have any alcohol, but I’d say it’s certainly worth the money with the quality of food. And if you’re looking for somewhere to go in Leeds for a date night or a celebration, this is the perfect place.
Is The Whitehall vegan Friendly?
There is a vegan menu with plenty of options for starters and mains, and nearly all of the sides on the main menu are vegan too.
The desserts are a bit limited, with only ice cream and sorbet to choose from so if I were going here as a vegan I'd order an appetiser, starter and main, and maybe give the dessert a miss.
Is The Whitehall gluten free friendly?
There is also a separate gluten free menu, which has A LOT of options. Most of the starters of the main menu can be made gluten free, for example french onion soup with a gluten free cheddar croute.
And for mains and desserts there are quite a few options to order so if you're GF you won't be limited by the choices on the menu.
Tell me more about the early evening menu…
This menu is available Monday - Saturday between 5pm-7pm, and includes three courses and half a bottle of wine for £32.
There are additional charges for some of the starters and mains though so look out for that, for example the scallops starter has a £4.50 surcharge, and the fillet steak has a £15 supplement.
But there are still plenty of options on this menu without a supplementary cost, so it is a good deal.