BRAIN FOOD: Canteen culture Asda, Leeds

BRAIN FOOD: Canteen culture Asda, Leeds - Entree: The Riverside restaurant at Asda's Great Wilson Street headquarters really is beside a river - the Aire - and, thanks to the commercial regeneration of Leeds, the surroundings are discreetly attractive and

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Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

Entree: The Riverside restaurant at Asda's Great Wilson Street headquarters really is beside a river - the Aire - and, thanks to the commercial regeneration of Leeds, the surroundings are discreetly attractive and post-industrial.

Despite redecoration following the Wal Mart takeover last year, the familiar green-and-yellow Asda livery still predominates in the large open-plan dining area. But a clock in reception shows the time in Bentonville, Arkansas - home of the US parent.

Main dish: In Asda's canteen, as in its supermarkets, there is an abundance of choice - everything from salads and lite bites to full-on three course meals. Even a performing chef, who creates mouth-watering stir-fries (with a Yorkshire accent) before diners' eyes. For those lacking the stamina to peruse five different menus, there is a deli bar serving filled baguettes, baked potatoes and ciabatta rolls, which are freshly prepared while you wait. It is all good value - sandwiches start at a pound, and relatively exotic main dishes (how about a warm salad of Atlantic prawns and pancetta bacon?) cost less than two quid.

Dessert: As befits a grocery business, this is a company that wants its staff to eat. Breakfast and afternoon tea (complete with scones and jam) are also served in the restaurant, and there is an all-day coffee bar for drinks and snacks if you're still peckish.

Whine list: The directors encourage colleagues to 'shout about success', so it can get noisy. And the riverside setting is wasted, since you can't eat outside.

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