I suppose the title of this post is slightly unfair to the restaurant in question as they are trying something a little different which should be applauded…but here goes.
Hotel Chocolat is a British chocolatier who produce some really good (though expensive) chocolates. My wife has enjoyed their products for some time. They recently opened 2 restaurants called “Roast + Conch” in London and Leeds with a chocolate-inspired menu (yes, in all courses of the meal!). On Friday, we went with friends to the Leeds venue.
I started off with a “Cow Heel” Soup containing dumplings with cocoa nibs in there. This was followed this with a Lamb Pepperpot with cocoa bits on the side and finished with a trio of sorbet (guava, pineapple-line and soursop cocoa). So, was it any good?
The food wasn’t bad but it wasn’t worth the price of the differentiation they are trying to put across. The cocoa-linked aspects of each course felt gimmicky and not something that was really exciting (there may be a reason why we put cocoa in desserts after all!). If you put the cocoa-ness to one side, it didn’t seem good enough to warrant a return. But yes, glad we tried it because new things are good. For me, the highlight was probably the pineapple-lime sorbet which says a lot. The staff were average and seemed a bit scripted and inexperienced. I can see the restaurant potentially not getting return business and being closed within a year but hopefully that doesn’t happen.