Prestige Brunch at Vice & Virtue, Leeds*
I won’t lie, brunch is basically an every weekend kinda occurrence these days, because what’s a weekend with Eggs Benedict and a flat white or 7? But after a while, it all starts to get a little samey. So it was time to check out somewhere doing brunch a little differently, and that somewhere just happened to be Vice & Virtue…
With the experience of running Dough, a new launch on the cards in the form of Apertivo and having sampled their food in cocktails range previously, I expected A LOT from the V&V team. And of course, everything ran smoothly. The only tricky part of the visit was deciding which drinks menu to pair with our 5 course feast. You can choose between brunch and the classic drinks package (£50pp) which sounds delicious, or brunch and the prestige package (£75pp) which of course we went for, because Veuve Cliquot exists.
We started the day with a Champagne and rose water cocktail to get us ready for the first course, which was the Bircher Museli. The definite hero of this dish was the peanut brittle with it’s soft centre. The passionfruit gives the museli a hint of the V&V flare that I’m used to seeing, but this course didn’t prepare me for what came next…
We quickly went from 20 to 1,000 mph with this combination. The sparkling drink (like literally, there’s edible glitter in there) paired with the most perfectly balanced plate blew me away. The cured salmon wasn’t overly ‘fishy’ and the presentation was just unbelievable. I couldn’t love this dish more if I tried.
Even if you aren’t a black pudding fan, this dish will surprise you. Served with ‘posh baked beans’, taragon gel and a black pudding reduction, this is the dish I just can’t get out of my head. It’s honestly the best black pudding I’ve ever eaten and I would go back just for this! I would basically like to take the (very clean by the time I had finished with) plate home and hang it on my wall.
It’s probably not an appropriate place to talk dirty but let me anyway… Overnight slow-cooked Bison braised in coffee and almond milk, served with a coffee glaze and aerated hollandaise sauce. Nothing is just there for show, every element is carefully thought out and adds much more than just aesthetics to the plate. The coffee glaze is deep and rich, the bacon crisp brings saltiness, the tender buffalo is a joy to eat.
Is Matcha in a pudding enough to make it healthy? Plus it has cherries, so it’s got to be one of your five-a-day, right? By this point I was absolutely stuffed but I managed to squeeze in a few bites (read: the whole thing). The cherry ice cream was a balancing act of tart and sour, and the sponge was lighter than light. All in all, a brilliant quirky end to one of the best brunches around.
Fancy trying it? Got a brunch recommendation? Tell me about it.