Working in Horsforth, we’re surrounding by some real lovely restaurants, and just a stone’s throw away are scrumptious dines in Rodley, Farsley and Headingley too.
Around the corner from where I work near Cookridge is Gusto, a divine Italian restaurant. For those of you that haven’t visited one yet, Gusto has one of the most delightful of seasonal menus and a cocktail range that would just be too rude not to taste. For special occasions at work, it’s a firm lunch time favourite amongst us. The décor and ambience is chic, stylish and calm, and my absolute favourite detail is its 200-year old Olive tree that takes centre stage in the main dining area.
The taste of Italian fused together with Yorkshire’s character.We started the night at the bar, like how any good night should start, finding out more about Gusto’s summer cocktails. Refreshing, fruity and light.
Served as sharing nibbles, we tucked into the Stracchino cheese and truffle oil ravioli, dough petals with a romesco mayonnaise dip (vegan-friendly by the way) and coated olives stuffed with cheese. All three were absolutely scrumptious…Next in line were the starters, and as usual, the arancini rice balls had my name all over it. As it’s something I don’t make at home, as soon as it appears on the menu, it’s my go-to. To go alongside the rice balls, I choose the extra 5- hours slow cooked ragu, saffron, and Gran Moravia cheese.
The cheese was gooey and the ragu creamy, both wonderful combinations for arancini.Nathan was tempted by the pan-fried king prawns, and was a plate decorated for a king. With a bit of a kick to it, the seafood ensemble included pickled fennel, tomato, caper and chilli oil. And with one final touch, the edible flowers completed the dish.
The decision for the main was as easy as pie. We both had to go for the pan roast rump of lamb – certainly rude for us not too. The lamb, as asked for, was served pink, a think and tender cut, divine in taste and combined perfectly with crispy polenta, pea puree, and red wine jus.Meat and veg ensemble on a plate – pure perfection.
Someone else on the table ordered the oven roasted cauliflower steak, a mighty cauliflower it was indeed, taking up most of the plate and topped with almonds and seeds, tomato coulis, and a salad of pickled vegetables. This vegetarian-friendly dish was quite the jaw-dropper and a tasty dish for those wanting to keep meat-free.To share across the whole table for our mains, we enjoyed a trio of sides including Italian fried courgettes, skin-on fries and those with extra truffle too. All three dishes were empty and very much enjoyed.
To complete the night, we finished on a sweet high. Chocolate overload. Warm hazelnut brownie with salted caramel ice cream and a chocolate mousse, honeycomb and Chantilly cream.What a way to finish the evening. Silky smooth desserts that kept the table quiet.
As a final tipple of the night, we were served four mini Grey Goose espresso martinis, a drinks flight Gusto recommends. One classic and three variations, gingerbread, vanilla and hazelnut. And in 1, 2, 3, 4 our Gusto dining experience came to an end.I’ve already been back twice since and I’m looking forward to my next visit too. My little tip is to join the Dining Club with during lunch time and on Mondays offers you 40% off any food prices. Without the discount, Gusto’s prices are extremely reasonable for the quality of their ingredients, but this club discount is just too good to be missed out.
Their summer menu is a real treat, but I can also vouch for the winter and spring menu too. At Gusto’s you’ll be guaranteed the most delightful of dishes all year round, and a drinks menu to keep the thirst at bay.Cheers to that!
Have you been to Gusto before? And are there any firm favourites you tend to go for?