Dinner at Liz Cottam's Home Restaurant in Leeds

Thursday, August 17, 2017

A sneak peek at Home Restaurant's 10 course tasting menu from Chef Elizabeth Cottam!

The bar area of Home Restaurant in Leeds

I am a Masterchef fiend, religiously watching each series of the formidable show in many of its variations, but the one that will always have a soft spot in my heart is Masterchef UK. I literally fangirl squealed (and awoke my sleeping baby) when I received an email from 2016 Masterchef contestant Elizabeth Cottam, inviting me to attend a preview dinner at her new restaurant, Home, in Leeds. Home opens up to the public today, so go on and book a table! You will not be disappointed by this outstanding menu.

A preview of the 10 course tasting menu served at Liz Cottam's Home

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Home Restaurant. I have been compensated for this post, however all opinions remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company. Should you choose to visit the restaurant, I will not receive a commission or any monetary compensation. You can review my disclosure policy in full here.

A Preview of Liz Cottam's Home Restaurant

Tucked away in the epicentre of Leeds's bustling market area, a stone's throw from Kirkgate Market at number 16/17 Kirkgate, is Home. If you weren't looking for the entrance, you'd walk right past it, it's got the unassuming feel of a speakeasy. Opening the glass door with its embellished, ornate handle you're immediately face-to-face with concrete stairs, winding to the first floor, supported by a beautifully original polished wood handrail atop a wrought iron balustrade.

Table in the bar at Home

Overhead, elegantly rustic wicker lanterns hang, the light caramel colour of them expertly matching the belts of the wait staff, who are smartly presented in pressed Oxford shirts, black trousers and Brogues. The bar and hostess stand are in the spacious area at the top of the stairs. Large windows look down onto Kirkgate below and low slung couches and velvet upholstered chairs sit with beautiful tables in a dark room. The well-stocked bar along the far wall looks as if it were plucked out of the pages of any contemporary interior design magazine: the light marble with grey veining, a stylish contrast against the darkly painted room. Your eyes can't help but be drawn through the open door, into the dining room with the same velvet chairs and hanging lanterns.

Stylish Art Deco glasses at Home

Drinks and the first course of a 10-course tasting menu were served in the spacious bar. I ordered my usual, the not-so-mainstream apple juice and vodka. It came served in a beautiful Art Deco glass tumbler, on the rocks, with two straws. And it proved to be the perfect companion to the first course, the intriguingly named "Your Snacks".

Your Snacks at Home Restaurant

Our snacks were nothing short of incredible [spoiler alert: as was the entire evening and every dish we were served]. Two celeriac and apple tarts were presented on a matte black disc next to the other two snacks: crispy chicken skin with pate and blackberry and smoked ox and salad cream. My favourite was definitely the crispy chicken skin--the naturally sweet blackberry and the rich pate were a match made in heaven.

Liz Cottam in the kitchen with her team at Home

We finished the rest of our menu in the dining room, just a few feet away from the kitchen and the big picture window box offering views inside. Chef Liz commanded the kitchen, bustling about with authority, instructing her team, controlling the pass and ensuring every dish prepared was impeccable.

The next courses on the menu were Lobster Thermidor Dumpling, Heritage Tomato and Basil Salad, Sweet Peas, Lamb and Mint, Smoked Venison Tartre, Carrots and Liquorice and Tea and Toast.

Lobster Thermidor Dumpling from Home

The lobster was served in a rich Thermidor sauce, a crisp of the cheesiest Dale End Cheddar cut through the richness and gave a welcome slightly salty taste before delving into the comfort of succulent butter-poached lobster. The heritage tomato salad was refreshing and full of wonderfully weird Alice Down the Rabbit Hole creations such as basil sponge, tomato meringue, basil ice cream, vinegar jelly and tomato powder!

Heritage Tomato and Basil Salad from Home
Sweet Peas Lamb and Mint from Home

For me, the stand out dish of the first half, was the sweet peas, lamb and mint. A cube of slow cooked lamb breast peeked from beneath a bed of fresh mint, scattered with minted curd powder and uncooked mint-infused peas that silenced the table as we tucked in, in absolute awe at the amazing flavour profiles.

Smoked Venison Tartre from Home

One thing that certainly stands out with Liz's food is her phenomenal pairing and playing with flavours. From cheese and lobster to mint and curd to lemon and salmon and salted milk, the flavour pairings constantly surprise and wow you!

Scottish Salmon, Cucumber Lemon and Dill from Home

The second half of the menu was comprised of: Scottish Salmon, Cucumber Lemon and Dill, BBQ Pork and two desserts: Peach Melba and Strawberry Cheesecake.

BBQ Pork from Home

The salmon, fresh and perfectly cooked and still rare at the centre was pure heaven served with a cool dill broth, zingy lemon puree and compressed cucumber. But the final savoury dish before dessert stole the show. Quite simply, it was pork three ways. The understated description on the menu is a nice contrast to the showstopping dish before you. Slow cooked, glazed pork belly that's plump and succulent is served with roasted pork loin and pulled pork hugged in a parcel of delicious squash. The squash puree that accompanies it and the incredible bacon jam and sherry sauce are all superb. It finishes with a stick of crackling, that, although it could have been crispier, was perfectly porky.

Peach Melba from Home

Of the two desserts, the peach melba was my favourite: a peach and fizz foam and raspberry sorbet were served beneath a sliver of hazelnut biscuits carrying fresh raspberries and cubes of homemade marshmallow--both playful and elegant.

Strawberry Cheesecake from Home

In fact playful and elegant are two words that sum up the entire experience at Home. Liz and her staff invite you in in the most welcoming, cordial manner and proceed to blow you away with their skill and passion for food. Home is easily the latest must-visit restaurant in Leeds.

Reserve your spot at Home today and choose between a five or ten course tasting menu!


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