Not only is Hansa's one of the finest Indian restaurants in Leeds (indeed, restaurant of any kind), it is also entirely vegetarian - as much Indian cuisine traditionally is, or in Britain, was at least. The finest ingredients, lovingly prepared, go into making subtle, complex Gujarati dishes, whose flavours can all be made out even in the hottest of dishes. The staff - including Hansa herself - are extremely helpful and friendly, eager to explain the dishes to you, if you need any help after the thorough and interesting menu. A real treasure.
72-74 North St, Leeds, LS2 7PN - a fifteen minute walk from Leeds City Station, or ten from the bus station.
This is Roundhay/Harehill's up and coming restaurant, and extremely good value. The secret is out, because these days Arti is getting a full house and is popular with white and Asian customers alike.
Arti offers some south Indian fare such as dhosa and idli as well as the more standard Indian dishes; warning - the starters are huge and really delicious.
Arti started his restaurant a couple of years back, is very friendly, keen to find out what the customer thinks. This boy's going places! It's a hard act to follow - we've moved to a different city and still looking for an Arti replacement.
285-287 Roundhay Road
Leeds LS8 4HS
The Sheesh Mahal on Kirkstall Road always manages to amaze me with both the quality of the food and service on offer. Azram, the owner, is always serving and chatting with his regulars, and nothing is too much trouble for him, whether it is explaining the history behind dishes on the menu, or providing cake and a free bottle of wine for a friend's birthday.
There are many very, very good curry houses in Leeds and Bradford, but the Sheesh manages to serve food that's up there with the best. The service always tips the scales in the Sheesh's direction though.
Key dishes to try include the prawn puri starter, and either the fish balti or sheesh gosht karahi with a side order of cauliflower and aubergine. I've tried most of the menu and have yet to have a bad meal there.
Kirkstall Road, Leeds
Punjabi Indian restaurant a little way out of town (about 1.5 miles) but worth making the effort for.
Staffed by possibly the smiliest gents I have ever seen or met. Not massive portions by some standards, its all about the flavours, which are consistently a notch above other curry houses around and about. Still a proper good feed though, and all at a belting price.
Raja's has almost a permanent place in the Leeds Good Food Guide.
There are many many other ethnic eateries along the same road (Roundhay Road) so it's worth a look if you're not bothered about Raja's, but there are no bars in the area (except for a well dodgy Irish bar).
If you crave booze give me a knock, theres always beer and wine in the fridge, and I live just round the corner from Raja's.
186 Roundhay Road
0113 248 0411
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