Salvo’s this much-loved suburban Italian is a Headingley institution. Run by brothers John and Gip Dammone, Salvo’s have been dispensing friendliness, and superior pizza/pasta and more ever since their dad, Salvatore came over from Salerno and opened this little trattoria in 1975. For what its worth, Gordon Ramsay nominated it Best Neighbourhood Restaurant in 2010.
Busy, buzzy, informal and relaxed, above all this place is fun. Its long established no-booking policy used to mean queues snaking out into the street, but while there are still queues, latterly they’ve relented and now you can book a table online. They’ve also carried out a dramatic expansion and redesign with much more space and a bar upstairs, complete with vintage Vespa and a 60s jukebox, so that the wait is less of a pain. The wait is worth it for generous dishes of braised lamb shoulder with rosemary or stuffed aubergine with smoked ewes’ milk ricotta or a list of daily specials that may take in sea bream or venison. But what they do best and its prime appeal to families, students and anyone lunching against the clock are their old faithfuls, pasta and pizza. Try penne piccante, spaghetti carbonara or spaghetti with meatballs or their deliciously thin, crisp pizzas. Prices are moderate with pizzas around a tenner and nothing over £20. Light lunch and early bird menus; two courses £10.50/£13.50 are terrific value.