D and I are on a continuing mission to sniff out the best places to eat out in Leeds for under £15 a head. Earlier this month, we headed to The Black Swan for superlative pizza. Now we come to D's March choice: Bundobust.
Bundobust is another relatively recent addition to the Leeds scene, opening its doors last July. Word has clearly spread since the place was full to the gunnels on a miserable, wet Monday evening.
The concept (and I sort of hate using that word in conjunction with restaurants) is an Indian street food kitchen situated in a real ale pub. And the overall feel of the place is quite canteen-esque - certainly functional rather than beautiful. But that happens to suit the style of the food down to the ground.
A selection of Indian street food consisting of:
The ultimate bhaji (onion, cauliflower and spinach)
Something called Bhel Puri, which is a cold dish of puffed rice and noodles, flavoured with tamarind chutney
Indian style scrambled eggs with flatbread
Dhal and rice
Oh, and some spiced popcorn.
This lot came in at a grand total of £23. Absolutely bargainous.
This is street food, it is not to be nibbled at politely. It arrived at the table in takeaway style cardboard tubs. It was neither pretty nor pretentious. What it was, was completely delicious. I was particularly taken with the spicy eggs which we hoovered up between us - definitely something to recreate at home. The dhal as well was fabulous, a soft, tender hug of a dish humming with ginger. I probably could have lived without the spiced popcorn which was fine but slightly underwhelming in terms of chilli flavour.
I think this is the kind of place that is going to divide the crowd - it is not for meat eaters (the menu is entirely vegetarian), and it is certainly not for people who want a comfortable chair and a proper knife and fork. But for cheap, tasty, exciting food and a good selection of craft ales, it is definitely somewhere to sniff out.
6 Mill Hill