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Anthonys, Leeds


thom
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Restaurant magazine tells me Anthony Flinn has opened a new restaurant in the Flannels department store in Leeds. He's quoted as saying it "We've got a fine dining restaurant and wanted to serve simpler food but still good quality".

I'm quite suprised actually. The Flannels group seemed to have lost their way a little recently, at least in Manchester where they seem dated and off the pace compared to Harvery Nicks and Selfridges. That said, The Flinns are extremly shrewd cookies and must know exactly what they're doing and have a long term plan in place.

Flannels isn't really a department store (as in House of Frazer etc), it's actually a designer clothes retailer about the size and scale of a individual designers flagship store in London or NY. I know places like Donna Karan in NY and Armani in Milan have inhouse bars/restaurants, but I've never really understood whether the footfall and clientele of the shop become profitable onsite diners or not.

I'll watch with interest - the idea of Anthony flexing his culinary muscles with classic brasserie cooking is a tempting one. Gary, is it actually open yet? Have you been? Is it worth a trip?

Cheers

Thom

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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Nicole's restaurant in Nicole Farhi, New Bond Street London has been trading for a number of years and is apparently still going great guns, for lunch at least, so there's one example of the idea working. Good luck to the Flinns.

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I'll watch with interest - the idea of Anthony flexing his culinary muscles with classic brasserie cooking is a tempting one. Gary, is it actually open yet? Have you been? Is it worth a trip?

err, the answer is yes and no.

it is open but not publicised as yet, whilst they iron out the problems of which there have been many, officially opens next week. It will be called Anthony's at Flannels.

i was speaking to tony snr earlier and i'm heading up for lunch tomorrow but it is doing everything breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and functions in the evening.

not sure what's on the menu but they are using anthony's restaurant standard ingredients, including the bread.

you don't win friends with salad

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Flannels is indeed a bit tired in Manc., but it's the best clothes store in Leeds by far. They tried to open a cafe last year and it sort of sunk without much trace.

the leeds cafe was opened by simon gueller, with the fixtures and fittings from the late teatro leeds, i believe.

you don't win friends with salad

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Flannels is indeed a bit tired in Manc., but it's the best clothes store in Leeds by far. They tried to open a cafe last year and it sort of sunk without much trace.

the leeds cafe was opened by simon gueller, with the fixtures and fittings from the late teatro leeds, i believe.

Used to really enjoy my lunches at Flannels when it was still going - always delivered good food on the plate, at a reasonable price and nice service. In fact, it was actually a Matthew Fort review that first brought it to my attention last year - link here

It was always a nice light space, and a window table was particularly good for people watching. I can imagine a pared down version of Anthony's cooking will do very well here ... and since I plan to have lunch here on Sunday (Sat lunch is intended to be Red Chilli as mentioned elsewhere), might have some more specific views next week. I remember Tony Snr saying that there could be a deli section in the Flannels offshoot - which would be fantastic if we could get the black pudding ...

Cheers

Yin

Edited by YKL (log)
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Future looks very bright for anthony's new venture, the space hasn't altered from the original cafe if you liked that, very bright, airy with exposed beams, it's essentially a huge loft.

there's an art exhibition at the front which is flannels controlled but adds to the overall experience.

you can have anything from a coffee upwards is the essence of the concept.

menu is split into a page of breakfast goodies, from croissants to eggs benedict and beyond served until 11.30, then there's a lunch menu from club sandwiches to caesar salads and steak and chips. Then there's the anthony's lunch which is £12 for 2 £16 -i think for 3 courses of anthony's style cooking which will be familiar to those who've been to the main restaurant.

if that's not enough then you can settle into afternoon tea (must be Olga's influence she's a bit obsessed by afternoon tea at Betty's!) .

open 7 days a week until 6pm i think.

i had a quick lunch of nicoise salad which came as two seared chunks of tuna, with a well dressed salad with french beans, boiled eggs and a little stack of sauteed potatoes. It was just what i need as i'm a little jaded at the minute, nicely piquant dressing and well seasoned.

it is not yet being marketed and so there's no mention of it in the shop itself but i can assure you it's there, and open on the top floor!

you don't win friends with salad

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So who will be cooking the food?

Has Anthony got himself a brigade together? Will they all be rotating?

Sounds a fantastic place.

I went into a French restaraunt and asked the waiter, 'Have you got frog's legs?' He said, 'Yes,' so I said, 'Well hop into the kitchen and get me a cheese sandwich.'

Tommy Cooper

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So who will be cooking the food?

Has Anthony got himself a brigade together? Will they all be rotating?

Sounds a fantastic place.

tony's got a team and is showing them a few of his tricks by the sound of it and staff are swapping between the two, but i assume it will have it's own full time team as it settles down.

you don't win friends with salad

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Feck, if I'd known they were looking for another space I've got one ready to go.

i think this was quite opportunistic, they were approached to do it, it was pretty much ready to go bar a bit of decorating so a bit of a no-brainer for them versus the hassle of starting from scratch with a lease, kitchen to build etc.

you don't win friends with salad

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will write something more detailed later on but want to say that if you're reading this in Leeds then I would recommend, nay insist that you stop reading right now and get your coat and money and hotfoot it down to Flannels immediately - you'll be in for a real treat.

I went yesterday and amongst the great food, also had what could quite possibly be my dessert experience of the year. An exemplary lemon tart (so lemony it was almost sherbet like on the tongue, but with an oozy custard texture rather than the cloying lemon curd you can get which stops you eating so much!) with some divine ginger icecream - absolute nirvana and next time I go, I want a huge bowl of that please! :smile:

That was the third act in a set lunch which is absurd value at £15 .... practically free if you ask ,me.

And yes, Tony Snr and Chef and Olga were there too - don't they ever get any time off!

More shortly

Yin

X

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  • 2 months later...

Tried it for a late Sunday lunch a couple of weeks ago and cannot recommend this place highly enough.

Arrived at 2 to a calm but full room. High ceilings and windows looking out over the rooftops of Leeds and attractively simple table settings.

Good drinks list and an Anthony's influence is the unusual selection of bottled beers with tasting notes. Good bread and flavoured butters.

Had the 3 course set meal. At £15 this was the best value meal of 2005. Started with a squash veloute over a cheese beignet. At £15 one doesn't expect the 'full' high-end restaurant experience so to be presented with beignet in bowl then velvety veloute being poured around it from a separate jug by second waitress was more reminiscent of a £50 meal. The soup was good but my dining companion's starter surpassed it - a substantial cube of perfectly cooked belly pork, tender meat topped with crunchy but yielding fat on a pile of lentils.

Main was a huge lamb shank, french trimmed, long cooked and with a flavoursome reduction. Companion had a subtle and sharp risotto of goats chees and lemon - a perfect detox mal for next month?

Pudding was a rich white chocolate mousse of fine balance and companion had three excellent local cheeses.

The cooking shows great skill and maturity from young chef Chloe and the staff and presentation don't let her down.

We would have been very happy to get this meal at 2-3 times the price. It is remarkable value. If I could change one thing it would be to get the place to open during the evening too.

Go now, book it for your January treat to lift you from that traditional month of living in penury and consuming only cabbage and water.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

popped in today for a swift lunch.

lots looked appealing but chorizo risotto got the vote.

peach beer to start, in the interest of finding new product for the pub :laugh: and a rioja with the risotto.

all very good.

(the 2/3 course set lunch read well, and good value btw)

you don't win friends with salad

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  • 1 year later...

Having loved this place on all previous visits (see review above) I was disappointed with mixed quality lunch on Saturday.

Of the 4 starters only 2 were available. Chose asparagus veloute and it was excellent - bowl arrived with a perfectly poached quails egg, crushed broad beans and pea shoots and the balanced veloute in a separate jug. The jugs weren't poured out by the waiters and were left on the table throughout the main course.

Main of pork shoulder with crispy pigs ear sounded tempting but was a dryish chunk of meat without the hoped for melting quality. Other main of skate wings with gooseberry and samphire arrived and skate was off and had to be sent back. The staff behaved with perfect consideration - apologising for the off fish and offering to replace the course and writing off the price of the whole 3 courses. No complaints at all about the staff, who handled the problem with skill and tact - but surprised that the kitchen let the plate out, given that skate is notorious for turing ammoniac very quickly and given that the plate smelt like a nappy even as it approached the table.

Pudding of peach strudel was a rather tough samosa and the cheese plate was three small pieces of unidentified cheese with a pot of very good rhubarb chutney presented with a spoon with a sticky handle which seemed to have been used to stir something previously.

Hopefully this was a one-off, perhaps the chef was away, but always a shame when a previously exemplary place doen't meet its old standards.

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