We knew it had to happen sometime. Our sunglasses and sandals have been packed away for another season, rendered useless by the incessant rain and darkness that’s now bookending our commutes. Expressions are glum, sniffles are rife and we’re all moaning about the lampposts of Leeds that have suddenly been straddled by the silhouettes of looming festivity; impatiently waiting to be illuminated so that everyone can be under no allusion: winter is coming.
Yes, we’re all mourning the demise of our unnervingly glorious summer, but the advent of winter serves up solace in its most irresistible form – British comfort food. As we don our cosy jumpers and hibernate until March, picnics and barbecues are replaced with heaving plates of piping hot, consoling roast dinners, thick soups and wickedly indulgent puddings. It’s the comfort food that our little island is famous for, and there’s no better place to enjoy it than in one of the many quintessentially British establishments strewn across every village, town and city throughout the UK. As long as there’s a roaring fire thrown in. There’s got to be a roaring fire.
You’re probably thinking of your local pub now, right? Maybe you’re even in your local pub, pint in hand and left cheek burning by that obligatory roaring fire. Now there’s a thought… British comfort food is practically synonymous with our great local pubs, but they’re not the only place to seek refuge and fantastic comforting grub this Winter. Even after nine Leeds winters, it seems I still haven’t uncovered everything our city has to offer, as I discovered this week when Leeds-List invited me* to enjoy an evening at Sam’s Chop House in the City Centre.
There’s nowhere quite like Yorkshire. A far cry from the ‘desolate north’ that certain folk may deem anywhere north of London to be, Yorkshire invokes a fierce passion and pride from natives and nomads alike, and rightly so. But I’m not here to get into that debate. I don’t need to convince you about how great Yorkshire is – you know all of this. The virtues of Leeds are extolled regularly on this here blog, as are the delights to be found within neighbouring West Yorkshire cities such as Bradford and Wakefield. North Yorkshire is regularly praised for its wild, untamed beauty, and South Yorkshire’s cultural merits, especially Sheffield’s, are also highly acclaimed. We can definitely all agree on one thing – we love Yorkshire.
What I am here to tell you about is my love of an often forgotten corner of our beloved county – East Yorkshire. It rarely gets a mention at all outside of its proverbial walls, and if it does, it’s not usually positive. Dubious accolades such as ‘Britain’s worst city to live’ have been bestowed on its capital, Hull, in past years, blighting the region with an unfavourable reputation that’s not easily shifted. But a wholly unfair reputation this is indeed, which could put you at risk of missing out on what East Yorkshire has to offer. And you definitely don’t want to do that.