The village of Honley has become a thriving centre for those who love to dine out ... and Uno Cucina Italiana is its newest addition.
But there’s a link with the other eating places already there for this is the fourth outlet in the village by star chefs Richard Dunn and Wayne Roddis.
And their other three – Mustard & Punch, Punch Bar & Tapas, and the Krafty Kettle – are all on the same main street in the village.
It’s a food revolution that’s taken over Westgate.
In a recent interview in the Examiner Richard explained why they needed to create an Italian eating experience in the Holme Valley.
“There are a lot of Italian restaurants in Huddersfield and they’re all very similar – it wasn’t being done in the way we wanted to do it,” he said.
“This is about how they eat in Italy. It’s a sharing ethos. Plus, it has a family vibe where parents with children can build their own pizzas. People want more relaxed eating. Uno is our take on an Italian restaurant.”
So, to check out this ethos we went as a family – me, wife Ruth and 12-year-old son Harry who was in pizza building mode.
It’s a small menu, dominated by pizzas, but with some tapas, pasta and risotto too.
You won’t need a long time to peruse the menu, nor will you need your reading specs as the print is large.
It’s another quality renovation by Richard and Wayne, complete with exposed walls, vintage lighting and a really smart, upmarket vibe.
Service is excellent. There was a good welcome and we had barely sat down before we were offered a jug of water. That’s a such a simple yet effective touch. How many restaurants do you have to ask for some water? And then again. And again. It should arrive as a matter of course – which it did – in a splendidly modern jug.
Although the welcome was warm, the temperature inside didn’t match it and we felt the heating needed turning up quite a notch.
At first we were next to the bare wall and could feel the cold emanating from it so asked to move to the other side of the room.
A couple who came in about an hour after us did the same.
Richard’s right – the menu is all about sharing and so that’s what we set out to do – starting with doughballs (£4.50) with parmesan cheese and garlic butter. Six in all, so two each and the dough itself was quite light, but I’d have preferred them to have gone wilder with the garlic butter.
Then straight on to the mains which were calzone (£9) with ragu, nduja (spicy, spreadable pork salumi) jalapeno peppers and mozzarella with a garlic mayonnaise dip; king prawn and crab linguine (£7). Harry made his own pizza to include ragu, nduja, prawns and piquillo peppers (£8). For sides we had sweet potato fries (£3.50) Uno fries tossed in parmesan and truffled mascarpone (£4.50) and a roasted beetroot salad (£6) featuring chard, roasted hazelnuts, thyme, orange and Honley honey dressing. When we used to go to pizza places in Huddersfield years ago I remember calzones being monstrously large dishes ... or was it just because I was really small back then.
This calzone was more the size of a large pasty with the crust not tough or large enough to overpower what was going on inside and the garlic dip looked for all the world like mustard but was a cracking addition. Harry’s pizza you’d say was small to medium but well packed with plenty of topping but the dish of the day was the linguine with huge prawns but not more than a hint of crab, as it disappeared into what was a vibrant-looking bowl of food. Again there was a light touch to the textures and taste.
The salad is a treat for beetroot lovers – steer clear if you don’t like it – and there are plenty of other salads to go for, including the intriguing mixed grain and nut salad (£6) featuring quinoa, spelt and puy lentils with celery, walnut and lemon.
The sweet potato fries were stunning and the Uno fries shows how you can easily give the humble chip a very interesting twist.
Just enough room to share a pud which was chocolate tart (£5) which is just pure soft chocolate. We just about got a teaspoon each off Harry before he rounded off his feat with a hot chocolate (£3) leaving us wondering quite whereabouts in his body all this food was going.
With it being tapas, Uno offers a couple of large antipasta selections which are £18 each.
These are a selection of cured meats with pickles, Alpine cheese fondue and sourdough bread while the other for vegetarians is roasted, pickled and marinated vegetables with Alpine cheese fondue and also sourdough bread.
To sum up it’s a very well renovated restaurant with excellent front of house staff although we thought it should have been warmer and the pizzas a bit bigger.
Uno Cucina Italiana
13 Westgate, Honley, HD9 6AA
Phone: 01484 662776
Website: http://restaurantunohonley.co.uk (not that easy to navigate - look for tiny drop down menu icon at the top right hand side of the home page)
Opening hours: Closed Mon and Tues. Open 4pm-9pm Wed-Sat and from 2pm-8pm on Sundays.
Children: Absolutely and there is a children’s menu
Disabled access: There are steps just as you go in
The bill: £59.95 (including including a large glass of Sauvignon at £7.95)
Would you go back? Yes