If there’s one meal of the week that stands out from all the rest, surely it has to be Sunday Lunch. This meal is wrapped in tradition, layered with memories and should be a real family affair.
Unfortunately, Sunday lunch also brings with it a mountain of shopping, preparation and washing up! So, it’s a real treat to dine out every so often and we have a handful of restaurants, each with brilliant chefs at the helm, that we always fall back on. One of these is Seven Steps in Pudsey on the outskirts of Leeds. This award-winning restaurant has two award winning chefs gracing the kitchen and they are young, culinary geniuses.
Joe Crowe and James Turner have built a brilliant reputation for their food and hospitality, with customers travelling far and wide to dine with them, we are lucky enough to live quite close but we never take dining here for granted as unless you book in advance, they are usually fully booked, especially on Sunday.
Recently, Joe has stepped away from the kitchen to manage front of house and personally, we love him working the restaurant as the welcome is like coming home and his knowledge of the menu and wines is superb. The Sunday we joined them for lunch was at the beginning of October and it was starting to feel very autumnal, but the atmosphere inside Seven Steps could not have been warmer.
This was also the launch of a brand-new menu, designed by James and it looked mouth-wateringly good!
In these times of Covid, there are no more aperitifs at the bar, it’s straight to your table where your drinks order is taken and delivered, but hey, this is a small price to pay to be able to dine out and support the hospitality industry. So, over our G&T’s, we longingly looked over the menu.
Usually, we are real sticklers for traditional Sunday Lunch; rare roast beef with giant Yorkshire Puds and all the trimmings, but James had some dishes on this menu that knocked us off kilter! There is always a Chefs Experiment on the main course choices and this one ticked all of my boxes, we were originally going to forgo starters so that we could enjoy our main courses to the max, but the Slow Braised Pig’s Cheek with a smoked ham croquette, pea puree, watercress and apple vinaigrette was calling my name. Secretly my husband was hoping I would have a starter as he really wanted to try the Pigeon Waldorf Salad with celeriac remoulade, blue cheese cream, pickled raisin dressing, rocket, toasted walnuts and crispy Parma Ham, finished with frozen apple!
Thank goodness we decided to have starters, they arrived each a vision of autumnal colour with the strong flavours of the meat perfectly balanced by the accompaniments they had been paired with. The food here is always fantastic, but these new dishes were outstanding.
My husband broke from tradition slightly with his main course choosing lamb instead of beef, but it did come with all the fabulous trimmings of roast potatoes, the creamiest mash and seasonal vegetables. My Chef’s Experiment of Rare Breed Pork Chop with horseradish mash, pea purée and green beans in butter and garlic, with red wine jus had me salivating just thinking about it!
The rind had been rendered to create that all important crackling, the meat was sweet and succulent and tastier than any pork I could ever remember eating. Every element on that plate was taste perfection and I was so pleased I chose it. The lamb was ‘melt in the mouth’ tender and those roast potatoes and Yorkshire Pudding are always superb. The food is so good here, it is easy to see why Seven Steps is so popular.
Although we were both pretty full after those hearty plates, you simply cannot leave this restaurant without trying their desserts! There is a signature dessert which Joe created called ‘Dippy Egg and Soldiers’ and my husband will never try anything else, he says this is the best dessert he has ever tasted and he loves the fact that you are looking at one thing and tasting something completely different.
What you are looking at is in fact a perfectly boiled egg with toasted soldiers; what you are tasting is chocolate, passion fruit and brioche – every element is edible, even the spoon is made from chocolate! If – no, when you visit Seven Steps you must try this dessert, it will have you wondering how on earth it is done.
I had James’ sensational Apple Tarte Tatin with salted caramel honeycomb and delicious creamy fennel pollen ice cream, another personal favourite, with flavour combinations perfect for the time of year and completely delicious. Nothing to see on our table but two exceptionally clean plates and two very full people!
It had been a lovely treat, to eat such fabulous food in a brilliant atmosphere and to see Joe and James again and, no washing up to think about. That’s a perfect Sunday!
Remember to book in plenty of time otherwise you may be very disappointed.
Tel: 0113 2570140
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