#24 Visiting the Midnight Bell – A Leeds Brewery gastro pub serving up British classics in the heart of Leeds South Bank.

It was around 5.30pm when I stepped off the train last week - immediately greeted by Leeds usual charm – the platforms were busy as people gathered whilst others piled off trains to head out for the evening. I walked away from the crowds and the station and onto the building frenzy that is becoming the newly developed South Bank. Its an exciting time for Leeds to see this part of the city flourish with a buzz of things to come. Tonight I was heading to the heart of this newly developing urban village where old meets new. Industrial times are well remembered in these parts and buildings not being built keep a firm grip on how Leeds once was. One such place and where I was heading this evening was gastro pub and Leeds Brewery owned, the Midnight Bell. With a contemporary feel set alongside traditional brickwork and wooden beams – Leeds Brewery have done an excellent job in making the Midnight Bell a place to stop by, have a pint and enjoy well cooked food. Guest ales, bitters and bottles are all in good supply. The Midnight Bell was busy yet I was greeted with a generous welcome and found myself quickly being served. Tonight we enjoyed Indian pale and hand pulled, Monsoon.

The team at Midnight Bell are serving up British classics using the finest ingredients – we are talking hearty food that is freshly prepared. The menu is made up of starters, mains and desserts and all typical pub food is covered here – from Leeds Best battered haddock, with hand cut chips and pea puree to a towering Yorkshire Dales steak burger, with smoked streaky bacon, mature cheddar and relish. It was at this point, like many times before it, that I was quickly spoilt for choice. After some deliberation I settled on a chicken liver pâté, with pink peppercorn butter and sea salt served with a rosemary focaccia toast. It tasted really good – this was followed by main course of a traditional and proper steak and red wine pie, with creamy mashed potato and buttered vegetables. It was a tough call to squeeze anymore but it was impossible to turn down the sweet and decorated chocolate and orange tart with vanilla ice cream and berries. The Midnight Bell also offers a separate lunch and Sunday lunch menu and on top of this are hosting events in their courtyard throughout the summer.

We finished up our meal and made our way downstairs. We ordered another pint and headed to the decked seating outside. The courtyard space here is an ideal sun trap for BBQ events and larger groups gathering in the Leeds sunshine. In fact, the sun was still out as we finished up this evening. We headed back inside, through to the bar area and said our goodbyes. The Midnight Bell had been an excellent visit. If it is British classic gastro style food and drink you are after in traditional yet 
contemporary surroundings, then the Midnight Bell will not disappoint.

For more on the midnight Bell, visit their website at http://www.midnightbell.co.uk/

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