On a big corner site by the fringes of the city centre, the Reliance was a pioneer in changing the face of Leeds pubs. It introduced a wide range of international beers from Belgium, Spain and elsewhere, put California's celebrated Anchor Steam on draught, and added a rotating list of local ales (including their own Reliance Bitter) to bottles ranging from Chinese Tsing-Tao to Weston's dry cider. It has a respectable wine list too, selected by The Reliances sister wine shop and bar Wayward Wines, plus various hot and soft drinks that are ideal for those stopping by to read the papers on the comfy sofas in the morning.
For something a little more filling, head to the dining room, where lunch and dinner is served daily. The space is fairly non-descript wooden floors, plain walls and a mismatch of old tables but its bright, airy and comfortable enough. Lunch brings the likes of soup, sandwiches, ploughmans and bangers, while evening menus go up a gear for the likes of saffron-braised grey mullet with smoked paprika aioli, Toulouse sausage with braised lentils and a herb crumb, and Old spot pork belly served with Koffmann cabbage and pickled rhubarb. There are also various small plates, including homemade charcuterie made with Yorkshire rare breed pork, and a couple of options that are suitable for vegetarian and vegan diners. Seasonal puds such as rhubarb fool and trifle provide a sweet end to meals.
In spite of the upmarket food and drink on offer, the Reliance remains true to its mission statement: at heart, an informal pub, particularly when you consider its traditional pub quiz, which takes place every Sunday. Theres also a private dining room available for meetings and events and a small cinema hosted by Film Fringe. Regular movie nights take place here and the screening room is available for private hire as well.