First off I’ll apologise, I forgot to take any photographs on both of my visits (bad blogger). However in my defense they were hungover visits.
Now, I’ve not been to Red’s for a while. In fact not since this trip way back in 2012 (Red’s City Centre review). It’s always been on my list to visit again however there’s been so many new additions to the Leeds dining scene it kinda always got knocked off the top of the list by a newbie. Until they opened a new restaurant in Headingley, 5 minutes round the corner from my house and 2 minutes from where I work. Cue two visits in one week.
My first visit was last weekend after Light Night. Feeling a bit worse for wear; me, P and a visiting friend headed over one Saturday afternoon at around 3pm. Red’s in town is notorious for the waits for a table and Headingley is no different, we were surprised to be told a table would be 40 mins despite not being peak dining time or in town. Hey ho, hair of the dog over at Arcadia.
When we returned we were seated towards the back of the restaurant. The decor seemed pretty similar to the Red’s in town (dark stripped wood, lots of metal, open kitchen) but then I haven’t been there for 2 years so they might have gone all Regency on my ass.
We kept on with the drink and had a few Kona Fire Rocks (£4.95), not the cheapest but very tasty and weighing in at a hefty 6%. Food wise I ordered the Jalapeno Poppers (£3.95), the Half Rack of Baby Back Ribs with Grilled Cheese Texas Toast (£8.50) and the Slaw (£1.95). The Jalapeno Poppers were as good as I remember them, fresh jalapenos filled with molten cheese – what’s not to love? Similar to the last visit the ribs were delicious; messy, meaty and totally worth the fuss – leaving sauce just about everywhere (I think I got some in my hair this time). The slaw was a refreshing crunch from the other deep fried, rich foods. The cheese on toast was nice and comforting…but didn’t blow me away, it’s what it says on the tin really. I was gutted to see that Frickles and Cornbread seem to have disappeared from the menu though.
Despite being full to bursting point I left with a Howdy Doody Shake (£4.50) in my hand (stupid sweet tooth), a mix of peanut butter with banana. I needed a lie down on the sofa after I got home but it was totally worth it.
My second visit to Red’s was another hungover visit, this time on a Friday lunch after a work night out. We did intend on a takeaway to eat back at the office however they only do it on a Mon-Thurs and we got seated straight away. I was in a bit of a non-committal mood and only wanted to nibble on bits and pieces so went for the Jalapeno Poppers (£3.95), the Slaw (£1.95) and the Rib Tips (£5.95). The Poppers and Slaw were great (see above, they’re consistent yo) but the Rib Tips were sensational. Smoky, meaty, tender pork ribs – perfect hangover food even though I didn’t manage to get through everything. Again I walked out with a Howdy Doody Shake (£4.50) but this time with a chocolate ice cream replacement (no vanilla ice cream woes), nice but not as good as my one the previous weekend.
Both times I visited I was pretty impressed at how speedy and slick the service was once we were seated, as I recall when they opened they had a few teething problems. Plus the food was every bit as good as I remember it being way back in 2012.
To cut a long story short, Red’s is still winning at meat.