A glorious, magnificent eatery has just opened, serving up filthy, fatty goodness from twelve till late. One of Leeds’ most popular take-aways, Get Baked, has expanded. In what was formerly Halo’s second room, The Quilted Llama, beautiful burgers, crafty cocktails and drool-inducing piles of American pancakes now call out to the students of our fair city, begging to be devoured.
The Joint is still in its infancy, yet the crowds are already forming. When we arrived, hordes of hungry customers buzzed around the bar, waiting to be taken to their tables. Music boomed from the sound system, a neon all-seeing eye glared from behind the bar and the walls were virtually crawling with a bizarre collage of faces from film and television alike. Weird, perhaps, but the place feels like the coolest students’ union in town.
Their menu is a masterpiece, and it was near impossible to choose what to have. Deciding on a drink was hard enough, with a multitude of masterful cocktails and some tempting milkshakes to choose from. Eventually, we settled on ‘Ghost Stories’ milkshakes, a creamy concoction packed with Oreos and silky ice-cream, topped with oodles of freshly whipped cream. The bar is so well stocked, that if you dream it, they should have it. Cocktails start at £7, so may pull on the student purse strings, but after a long day in the library, an alcoholic kick is certainly in order.
Priding themselves on local, quality ingredients, their burgers looked to be things of beauty. The owner told us that everything is made on site, including the patties, which are crafted by the gods that work in the kitchen. With plates of sumptuous goodness drifting past our heads, we had to decide. Our stomachs demanded they be satisfied, and so we ordered two of their burgers – it was only right. The Heisenburger, trademarked by The Joint, was divine and could not possibly be topped by any other beef and bun combination. Succulent beef topped with crisp, mouth-watering maple bacon and smothered with blue cheese, providing a salty, grown-up punch. On the side, we enjoyed a basket brimming with skin-on fries, triple fried and smothered with a spicy homemade seasoning. If burgers aren’t your thing there are some cracking chicken options, all with a spicy Korean kick.
This was not the end. Though we had begun to drift into a food induced coma, desert was still on the cards. ‘You’ll have to speak up, I’m wearing a towel’ was what we ordered; no, we haven’t gone crazy, their puds just happen to share their names with soem choice Simpsons’ quotes. Chocolate and pistachio ice-cream, handmade brownie pieces and lashings of cream are masterfully united to make this glorious sundae, which is topped off with pieces of Fry’s peppermint cream. Beware: these cannot be defeated alone. Get Baked’s roots can be seen in their dessert menu, with a selection of American-inspired cheesecakes and sundaes to choose from.
The Joint is not just a restaurant. After twelve, food stops leaving the kitchen, and the tables begin to be cleared away. Don’t be fooled, though, they are not closing; the bar remains open, serving alcoholic goodness till late. We were promised there is a lot more to come, though it seems everyone’s lips are remaining very much sealed. There are whispers that the rest of Halo may be taken over, and that the restaurant side of things will only be a small part of this establishment. Live music, a small cinema and bowling are all rumoured to be on the cards, so you’d better watch this space. In the meantime, fill your boots with some Americana goodness.