Reviewing every last watering hole in Leeds city centre

The New Conservatory

The New Conservatory

  • Beer
  • Atmosphere
  • Amenities
  • Value

You’ve probably seen the entrance many times, but have you ever been in?

This vast underground café bar is Leeds’s most central bar, yet surprisingly it is 150 metres from any others, giving it a strange unknown quality. The place is almost always quiet enough to get a decent-sized table, even at times when the Call Lanes and Greek Streets are so rammed with people that it’s hard enough even to find spare oxygen.

The New Conservatory is an “everything” venue: It functions as a café during the day, serving light meals and cakes alongside a full (albeit not high-quality) coffee menu as well as their usual drinks. At night, it hosts private events in its large library area (which is packed with fiction books of all genres) and has regular live music.

The square bar dominates the centre of this underground cavern.

The list of amenities in this bar goes on forever… as well as food, books and live music, it has a small beer garden at street level in historic Albion Place, free wifi, a pool table, sofas, and a recently installed AC/DC pinball machine!

The beer selection is OK but not brilliant: a couple of Kirkstall Brewery ales, Vedett, lots of lagers on tap (including Tiger and Pilsner Urquell) and a couple of bottles. In the past we’ve seen Coopers Red and Peroni Gran Riserva in the fridges but these were not about when we visited this time.

Ready for a meal in the library area.

We really enjoyed this place in spite of the average beer selection. It’s a great place to have a quiet drink any time of the week and there’s certainly plenty to keep visitors occupied!

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Albion Place
Leeds LS1 6JL
0113 246 185


  1. I don’t really enjoy the design of this place or understand its real appeal. The décor is like Wetherspoons but in a basement. Already not a good start. The food is workaday and the beers are just about acceptable, though expensive, there is an unnecessary amount of premium lager options. They often stick blaring music on with a DJ which really doesn’t work. The patio area is nice in the sunshine, but then hardly any aren’t. Staff are fine and the clientele are OK too. It’s just overall not somewhere I’d really want to be.

  2. Just wanting to knock half a star off due to having the most pathetic pulled pork sandwich in my life. I turned up due to a half-price lunchtime food offer- looks like they simply double the price of the food. If I had paid the standard listed price of £9.95 on this sandwich I would have asked for half the price to be knocked off anyway. The idea anyone would pay a tenner for what I was served is both concerning and laughable.

    Do not eat anywhere where there’s a 50% off deal and you still come out of there feeling short-changed.

    Vouchercloud/ Pink Gorilla sometimes come up trumps but there are businesses like this place that deliberately inflate their normal menu prices then flood the market with superficially good sounding offers. I’ll be telling my friends not to go here.

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