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Not so amazing

I’m not usually one for disrespecting meat-free establishments, but neither will I pretend they are all fabulous havens of delectable and mouth-watering food.

Roots and Fruits - could be improved

If you find yourself stranded in Leeds for the day, places to eat vegan food are not easy to come by. If curry is your thing, make haste to Hansa’s and you should be satisfied with most things on offer. Feel like a quick snack or a tummy filler? Out Of This World stocks delicious vegan sandwiches, pizza slices and fudge to meet your needs. But if you are craving uninspired and uncreative dishes that are slightly overpriced, head on down to Roots and Fruits.

I know it would appear to some as slightly counter-productive for a FGV to ctiticise a vegetarian restaurant, but Roots and Fruits doesn’t make the grade in my book.

This long-standing Leeds cafe is housed in a shop front half way down the Grand Arcade. The interior stumbles along the fine line between homely and outrageously-tacky with garish tablecloths and blinding paper napkins. But picking on the decorations is an easy target. Let’s talk about how the food is a let down.

Sandwich, spring rolls and fries - not impressive

My order sounds good from a distance. I asked for the wild mushroom pate, lettuce and red onion sandwich and sides consisting of fried spring rolls and french fries. Coupled with an apple juice, my meal came to the hefty price of £12.10. For this price I would expect some effort and innovation but Roots and Fruits served up bland fare that didn’t impress. My sandwich consisted of limp lettuce and a scraping of Tartex mushroom pate. £4.95 should have bought more than that.

Sorry Roots and Fruits. I give you props for your 10% student discount. I celebrate your commitment to supplying Leeds with meat-free meals. But I can’t be excited for your lacklustre and uninspired cuisine. Nothing appeared to be made in house so I could have stayed in at the Haus of FGV and got the same (or better) for less.

Roots and Fruits vegetarian cafe

Roots and Fruits, 10-11 Grand Arcade, Leeds LS1 6PG

P: 0113 242 8313 E: rootsandfruits@googlemail.com
Hours: M-F 11am – 7pm Sat 10am – 7pm

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Written by fatgayvegan

  1. Roots and fruits appear to have pretty much given up. Sad really but a few years ago it was a treasure house of veggie/vegan treats. Since the arcade has all but closed down, I think they’ve just stopped trying. What they really need to do is move out, disappear up to Headingley and rediscover what it was that made them once so special.

    A sad situation.

    • The Grand Arcade has truly become a ghost town. The cafe is sometimes still packed on a Saturday but the day a decent veggie place opens in Leeds, I fear they are done.

  2. I don’t even live in the UK, but I love the fact that you’re calling out a restaurant for what it is. I think there should be more of this in the vegan blogging communities, in my experience there is a lot of mediocre vegan food out there (Babycakes in NYC, for example, has TERRIBLE cupcakes, despite a store name that trumpets otherwise). Why leave home if I can make something lackluster myself?

    Loving the blog. Now diving in to read more.

    • Thanks for reading!

      I have never rated Babycakes NYC that highly either. I have eaten their products several times and was never blown away. I haven’t been back in a while so they could have improved.

      • Was there two weeks ago. Sorry to inform… still terrible.

        But if you head to NYC, check out Lula’s Apothecary. They do all vegan soft-serves, ice creams, and egg creams. I would do bad things to have their cake batter soft-serve with chocolate cookie bits on top on a regular basis.

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