The Swine that Dines, an independent Leeds bistro restaurant run by chef couple, Jo and Stu Myers, smashes its initial £25,000 crowdfunding goal to help fund its move to a bigger venue as it nears its £40,000 stretch target.

The restaurant launched its crowdfunding campaign on Friday 7th June and hit its £25,000 target in just 48 hours. It is now near its stretch target of £40,000 to help them purchase a ‘swinemobile’ van to help them cater for private events.

Jo Myers, co-owner of the Swine That Dines said: “We’re completely overwhelmed by the support we’ve received for our crowdfunder and are on cloud nine to have hit, and then overtaken, our initial target! Thank you to everyone who invested, it means so much to us.

“The Swine is a real labour of love, which we’ve nurtured and grown through some tough times. We’ve seen so many wonderful restaurants close their doors over the last few years, that for us to finally realise our dream of opening a bigger Swine in the city we call home is a real privilege.

“Who knew so many people would be tempted by my lemon meringue pies! I’m going to be baking them for months.”

The current Swine that Dines is too small with only an 18-cover capacity and a tiny kitchen that can only accommodate two chefs and limited fridge and storage space.

The proposed new restaurant space will double its covers to 30 as well as include a private dining room with an additional 15 covers.

The Swine that Dines crowdfunder saw more than 400 people invest from as little as £10 up to £2,200 to hire out the new restaurant for a staff Christmas party for 30 people. The majority of pledges were for meals at the new Swine that Dines with vouchers valid for two years.

Pies have been a theme and the most popular reward with 50 people opting to pledge their support in return for one of Jo’s famous homemade lemon meringue pies. A further 10% of people wanted to indulge in four Individual Swine Pies.

Thirty people have signed up for a cookery masterclass with Stu, who has a huge amount of knowledge and skill so it’s a great chance to learn from him.

The Swine that Dine started life as a sandwich shop, The Greedy Pig in 2012 which served all day breakfast, but the pair had dreams of running it as a restaurant. They organised pop ups around the city culminating in a Pie Night that raised enough money to install a downstairs toilet in the small café.

This enabled them to launch their first supper club in 2014 offering an evening menu of small plates. They closed the Greedy Pig in 2018 and opened full time as the Swine That Dines. The business managed to ride the challenges of the Covid pandemic and cost of living crisis by staying true to their art of producing world-class bistro food, delicious puddings and the occasional pie with passion and authenticity.

The restaurant has gone from strength the strength building a loyal customer following and garnering a host of positive reviews. It is now the highest rated Leeds restaurant in the Good Food Guide and Hardens and has attracted positive reviews from well-known restaurant critics from The Guardian, Telegraph and Olive magazine.

The new space is currently an empty shell which is ready for the Swine to put its own personality on it. The crowdfunding money will help Jo and Stu refurbish the space, install a ground-level accessible toilet, build a bar, kit out the kitchen and purchase a dishwasher, more tables and chairs.

The brand-new bigger Swine that Dines will be ready to welcome guests in autumn 2024.