Head of Steam: Is this the best bottomless brunch in Leeds?
Bottomless brunch: at this point it’s an institution. The boozy offspring of breakfast and lunch conjures up images of cackling huns swilling Pornstar Martinis while pumping the air with arms seemingly sponsored by Pandora, Michael Kors and Vivienne Westwood. As such, Head of Steam may not be an obvious choice for the Molly-Mae of meals. The self-proclaimed “purveyors of great beer”, with 15 locations across the UK (including 3 in Leeds), is more often associated with pump pulling and pub quizzing. Yet, the chain gastropub serves up a brunch that is certainly no half pint.
At £25 per person, the brunch price Head of Steam on Park Row is comparable, if not slightly cheaper, to other city centre venues. The choice of alcohol for your 90-minute pissup include Prosecco, Aperol Spritz, Bloody Mary, Craft Beer Flight, Wolf Pilsner Cameron’s Cask and Aspall Cider. Although that list could do with the addition of an extra cocktail – perhaps a Mimosa or a Pornstar Martini – the option of beer and cider sets Head of Steam apart from other brunch spots by broadening its target audience. Who doesn’t want to go brunching with their lager lout pals?
Another thing that must be noted is the attentiveness of the staff. Our server personally selected a beer for me that was off the brunch menu when I told him what I like to drink. Not only that, but the pace of serving was astounding. It’s obvious when some brunch spots encourage their staff to mince about in order to serve fewer drinks to punters and save money. This is the only bottomless brunch where I have been served drinks faster than I can down them. This was the aim of brunch at HoS the manager told me: a true man of the people.
As for the food, it was pretty top class. When I brunch, I like to mix meat and sweet so the Belgian waffles topped with Duvel-flavoured syrup and fried chicken was a perfect choice for me. Everything on the plate tasted sublime and the portion size was generous. My friend was similarly impressed with eggs Benedict – a dish so easy to mess-up but divine when done right.
If you book a brunch at Head of Steam you can expect friendly and efficient service, sizeable portions of delicious food and an ever-flowing cascade of drinks. Next time you go brunching, ditch the pretension of a glass-fronted cocktail bar and head to this gastropub. Brunch is the best meal of the day and this is the standard it deserves.