Gemma Burnham visits the new deli on the block, Tasty! @ Oakwood Clock in Oakwood to sample some of their menu, and meet the owners.
Tasty! owners Rebecca and Paul
Newly opened on 20th January 2011, after the success of the Headingley branch, Tasty! in Oakwood is quickly becoming a popular choice for the residents of north Leeds. It is set in the heart of Oakwood, opposite the Oakwood Clock and run by a friendly husband and wife duo, Paul and Rebecca. I went to visit Tasty! to see what they were all about. Paul, having worked in the food and catering business for many years, and Rebecca with a history in HR but a passion for food and cake baking, decided to open their first Tasty! branch in Headingley three years ago. Headingley Tasty! specialises in selling sandwiches – and lots of them, totalling an impressive 76 different fillings on their menu. Acting as mainly a takeaway venue, Tasty! in Headingley proved popular with the student crowd and is still going strong today.
What’s Tasty! all about?
The ethos of the new Tasty! is to present a more upmarket café, appealing to a wider range of customers, selling a wider range of dishes. They still provide a fantastic selection of sandwiches – the most popular one being ‘The Tasty!’, which includes chicken breast,
bacon, mushrooms, blue stilton, with mayo and American mustard on a bed of lettuce. I sampled this signature sandwich during my visit which came with a lovely fresh side salad and yummy home cooked chunky chips that were seasoned to perfection. The portion size was generous too – filling me up for the whole day!
Healthy and locally sourced produce
As well as the large array of sandwiches, continuing with the their new healthy eating ethos, the menu also includes a variety of dishes such as falafel and roasted pepper wrap, poached salmon and dill salad, chicken and chorizo pasta, seasoned mini Yorkshire lamb burgers, and homemade beef lasagne – to name a few. Paul and Rebecca are very proud of the quality of their produce and try to use locally sourced products wherever possible. All the meats are fresh and come from Setchfields Butchers in Roundhay, and the burgers are even handmade in store. A new edition to the menu includes Olley & Olley’s whole-hog sausages that are hand made in Ripon, and make an appearance in the filling breakfast dishes and as a lunch special.
Their seven different options of bread is freshly baked and comes from Haigh’s Family Bakers in Guiseley, and their fruit and veg comes from Direct Fruit Supplies in Sheepscar who have been based in Leeds for over 50 years – now you can’t more local than that!
For a peek at the entire menu please view here.
Tasty! Oakwood presents a lovely laid back atmosphere; I was greeted with a warm welcome as I entered and could see that this was a place where regulars came back again and again. There is seating for 25 people inside the café plus additional seating outside on newly built decking, which is perfect to enjoy a nice coffee and cake on a sunny afternoon, while taking advantage of their free Wi-Fi.
Mums and babies enjoy the comforts of Tasty!
I visited on a Wednesday, which proved to be very popular with local mums. They frequented Tasty! every Wednesday lunchtime after attending the mum’s and toddler group at Roundhay Parochial hall. I had a quick chat with them to see what they liked about Tasty! and what kept drawing them back week after week. Lizzie, from Chapel Allerton, stated: “They are really good with children”, to which Ruth, from Roundhay, added “plus there is lots of room for pushchairs”. A third mum, Sarah, comes all the way from Wetherby every week because; “The food is excellent and its really good value”. I could tell the children were enjoying it too, keeping busy by playing with the assortment of toys Tasty! provides as well as high chairs. The only thing missing at present was some changing facilities but Rebecca assured me this is a high priority for them and will be installed in the very near future. To appeal more to families, Tasty! have now designed a separate children’s menu which will be launched along with the new menu very soon.
To add to the wide selection of food and friendly atmosphere, Tasty! also provides additional services such as venue hire, party catering and corporate catering for business breakfasts or lunches, providing hot and cold platters and nibbles. Ask in store for more details.
Rebecca also runs a separate business called Sugar Rose, designing and baking her own cupcakes which are available to buy in store, and available to order for weddings or other events. However, she doesn’t stop there; Rebecca could pretty much design any cake you like for any occasion so please ask in store, she would be very happy to help!
Hive of activity
I felt so welcome at Tasty! I could have stayed for longer and sampled some of the yummy looking cupcakes, but as lunchtime approached the café became a bustling hive of activity. As the seating filled up, and the orders flowed in, I left Paul and Rebecca to attend to their customers and left with sense of happiness that I’d met some lovely local people and discovered a new eating haunt, as well as leaving with a satisfied and full stomach!
To win a meal for four at Tasty! courtesy of North Leeds – News, enter our competition here