My parents came up to Leeds for Easter weekend and as my mum was getting the train I went into town to meet her. We then got ourselves a reservation at Roast and Conch, the Hotel Chocolat restaurant, as none of us had ever tried it before. The group consisted of my mum, dad, Fraser, Fraser’s mum and myself.
The first thing that hits you upon entering is the smell, it is incredible! The scent of cooking chocolate was enough to get anyone’s taste buds excited. The décor is sleek and we had prime seats in the upstairs corner window overlooking the busy crossing below, perfect for people watching.
There were a range of standard drinks and also those that sounded a little more exotic. My mango bellini was a bit heavy handed on the mango, and it took three attempts to get Fraser the drink he ordered, a salted caramel hot chocolate but he did love it when it finally arrived.
The menu is “Anglo-West Indian” fusion with most of the dishes infused with roasted cocoa. Some of this I think worked really well but some of it didn’t work in my opinion. The white chocolate mash was nice but very sweet, you wouldn’t want too much and the chocolate chips in the brioche burger bun worked. I was not a fan of the cocoa infused onions in the burger though and the chocolate gravy was awful (this was only my personal opinion though and may have been influenced by the fact I don’t actually like gravy anyway).
The thing we were all really looking forward to though were the puddings. I had the rhubarb and white chocolate cheesecake which was yummy although I would have preferred it more if it were just white chocolate I think). The biscuit base was very bitter unlike a regular cheesecake but it was pleasant. I would have expected a wider selection of desserts considering it was linked to a chocolate shop but the ones we did chose were nice and our favourite course of the meal.
There is a Hotel Chocolat shop downstairs. You can view the menu on their website here.
I would recommend this as a place to go for food in Leeds as a novelty although it is perhaps not somewhere I would go again in a rush. It was interesting to try some of the flavours but for me not all of them were to my taste. The drinks could do with some refining but overall we had a pleasant meal.
N.b. All opinions on the food are my own and other people may enjoy tastes and flavours I don’t therefore please don’t be put off something because it was not my favourite dish.