I always, always say I think Leeds has a real lack of special hotels. Y’know the type; somewhere you’d booked a night for an anniversary (ooh er missus). Or somewhere you want to recommend when you get asked. Well, there’s a new hotel on the block and it is absolutely gonna be one you want to shout about.
The Dakota Deluxe is tucked away on Russell Street, set back from the hustle and bustle of Greek Street so you’re near the action but not right in the midst. In fact they told us that they’d recently closed their Greek Street entrance as they were worried they wouldn’t be able to give everyone a personal welcome with 2 separate entrances. And when you walk into the lobby you get what they mean. We were greeted straight away and personally taken down to the restaurant; by the way this was before we’d mentioned we were doing a review so don’t think we were getting special treatment. The decor throughout the hotel is beautiful; all plush, dark fabrics and low lighting – a real luxurious vibe.
The restaurant is on the bottom floor of the Dakota Deluxe and carries through the luxury with big leather seats to relax back in. It was fairly quiet when we visited (around 7 on a Thursday evening) but half way through our visit a large group taking up about half of the restaurant came in so perhaps why it was booked out.
Whilst we were looking over the menu we were advised on the wine; my favourite is a Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc and they recommended a very nice one called Little Beauty (£40 a bottle). Really fresh, clean and fruity – worryingly drinkable too!
For starters I went for the Crispy Goats Cheese (£8) and my date went for the English Asparagus (£10). Impressive looking right? Definitely as good as you’d see in any top restaurant. Mine was equally as delicious; goats cheese bon bons balanced well with the clean watermelon and earthy beetroot. A really nice dish with all the different components complimenting each other. My date’s was a combination of asparagus, morels, a poached egg and a truffle dressing – again a great match of flavours.
For mains we both went for steaks; a Rib Eye (£26) for me and a Sirloin (£28) for my date. Fairly pricey but they were fantastically flavourful and cooked to perfection. I have to say I think my date’s was slightly more tasty than my own so give the sirloin a try.
We also had a few sides to go with the steak; we swapped the chips that usually come with the steak for Buttered Spinach, and had the Tomato Salad (£3.50) and Cauliflower Gratin (£3.50). The spinach was as expected and a good swap if you’re trying to cut down on the carbs but we were a bit disappointed with the others. The tomato salad was on the lackluster side though did have different varities of tomato which made it a tad more interesting. We were expecting the cauliflower gratin would be similar to a dauphinoise but it was more cauliflower cheese.
Dakota Deluxe redeemed themselves on desserts though; I had Strawberry, Raspberry and Mandarin Sorbet (£6) and my date had Coffee & Baileys Ice Cream (£6). Both were really delicious and tasted homemade. The raspberry sorbet especially was proper bite your cheek tart which I absolutely love.
We were shown the rooms and they are so, so gorgeous. My favourite was the Signature Suite which I would move into tomorrow if I could. We also had a nightcap in the terrace bar which has an open air section overlooking Greek Street – perfect for people watching and getting away from the crowds.
Can you see why I reckon Dakota Deluxe is worth shouting about? Definitely somewhere I’ll be recommending and I bet you will too!
The meal was complimentary however views are my own.