The beating heart of West Yorkshire, Leeds is a city filled with culture, heritage and great Italian food. We love wandering through the beautifully ornate arcades lined with charming boutiques and strolling along the city’s industrial era canal path. With so much to explore and take in, one quickly works up an appetite and so we’ve compiled a guide to our favourite Italian restaurants in Leeds, including some of our go-to pasta dishes on their menus.
Our Top Restaurant Picks
Centred around the craftsmanship of fresh pasta making, SARTO brings a true taste of Italy to the heart of Leeds. The passion and skill of the restaurant’s pastai - pasta makers - is fascinating to observe and we wholeheartedly recommend the experience. Their menu is constantly evolving and we know you’ll love whatever they have to offer, but some of our favourite dishes are the bucatini with puttanesca sauce & pangrattato and the radiatori with semi-dried tomato, roast peppers & almond pesto.
Duke St, Leeds
A bright young thing of the Leeds restaurant scene, Da Vito has already won the hearts of many locals, providing fresh and hearty Italian dishes which are beautiful both to behold and to devour. Simplicity is at the core of their menu, as demonstrated in their mouthwateringly tasty Spaghetti Aglio, Olio e Peperoncino. We also love their Gnocchi al Dolcelatte, a warming dish perfect for a winter’s evening.
3 York Place, Leeds
San Carlo Leeds is one of the newest additions to the group of restaurants owned by Carlo Distefano. Born in Sicily, Distefano has always had a passion for food and this is reflected in San Carlo’s wonderfully fresh menu. If you’re feeling fancy, we recommend the Colchester Rock Oysters to start, bringing a taste of the Mediterranean to sunny West Yorkshire. As far as the pasta goes, you can’t go wrong at San Carlo, everything is freshly prepared with delicious ingredients which really shines through. We particularly like the classic Sicilian Rigatoni alla Norma, a nod to Distefano’s heritage or the classic Tagliatelle Bolognese, a rich and meaty beef ragù.
6 - 7 South Parade, Leeds
Found in central Leeds only 300 yards from the Corn Exchange shopping centre, Viva is a warm and cozy Italian eatery serving authentic pasta dishes and delicious aperitivo. We love their decadent take on the classic Italian spaghetti alla carbonara, best enjoyed with a glass of Bardolino DOC Classico Araia.
9-11 Bridge End, Leeds
More than just a restaurant, Bibis offers everything you could possibly want from live music and entertainment to an extensive cocktail menu and delicious pasta. Located a stone’s throw from Leeds train station the restaurant is easily accessible and visitors will be wowed by the oozing, Art Deco opulence that makes Bibis so iconic. Catch a live jazz show whilst sipping an Old Fashioned in this fun and slightly quirky environment.
Criterion Place, off Sovereign Street
At Pasta Evangelists, we bring a taste of Italy to your kitchen. Prepared using the freshest ingredients, our gourmet pasta dishes are perfect for those looking to enjoy restaurant-quality meals, delivered to your door, and ready in under five minutes. Order from our weekly menu today, and we’ll offer you 25% off your first delivery - simply enter the code BLOG25 at checkout.