Two things dragged me into this bar/cafe close to the Corn Exchange of Leeds; it is Yorkshire themed and has a WTF name. The country was once sub-divided into administrative areas called Wapentakes – the Danelaw equivalent of an Anglo-Saxon Hundred in most other counties. The word is derived from an assembly or meeting place where literally one’s presence was taken by a show of weapons (like a night out in Leeds really).
This place is a ‘A Little Piece of Yorkshire’ by combining a bakery, café and bar to serve and support the local community. And when I say local community I mean students and other people that like to get leathered on a regular basis.
The building is several floors (only two where customers can sit) of boarded, slightly worn wooden tables and chairs that you would expect in a pub that’s been around a bit although this cafe only opened in 2016. It all goes to give it that spit and sawdust feel. A bar greets you with muffins and brownies baked on the premises (which look good) as you walk through the door and helps line your stomach.
This place seems to act as a social hub for students/trendies/alkies and those wishing to recover from a hang-over with a greasy breakie. I ordered the ‘Yorkshire Fry-Up’ and from a distance I wasn’t hoping for much but on delivery was pleasantly surprised; beans (Henderson’s – from Sheffield), tomato, bacon (a bit salty), sos, hash brown, poached eggs and a muffin – mostly locally sourced from Kirkgate Market. The brown sauce too tasting like Stokes’ but was Henderson’s too. All spot on. Latte decent too (coffee provided by a local company in Skipton). They try to offer a vegan and gluten free option to everything on the menu which is a big thumbs up.
There is plenty on the wall to look at as you cogitate and masticate. Artwork provided by local artists (available for sale), posters, framed pictures of all sorts, skates, cricket bats, and a large piece of wood from a building. There is also an old piano made-over by a local graffiti artists and Sky Sports upstairs. Trendy pendulous lamps hang down from spider legs
Cool music plays by Yorkshire artists (Pulp and The Human League, natch) and they have live music nights. Two Victorian toilets are available with posters to look at while you are birthing a brown otter and elsewhere the wifi seemed quick.
A few Norwegians from last night’s A-ha gig and a gaggle of hens the worst for wear enter as we leave. Maybe Morten, Pal and Mags will be for a bacon bap later.
Good: Good breakie, locally sourced, interesting, good vibe.
Bad: Busy. A bit spit and sawdust.