It won’t come as a surprise to be told that, right now, Manchester’s food scene is booming.
Every week, a new dining concept opens its doors and it is so wonderful to see this food Renaissance happening right under our noses.
But it isn’t just us locals who are noticing it. Notable publications like The Good Food Guide are on the hype too, and the 2019 copy has some super interesting inclusions.
Here are a few of the ones given an honourable mention this year. I decided to leave out the obvious (Where the Light Gets In, The French, El Gato etc…) as to give a few of the little guys a shout out.
Sugo Pasta Kitchen, Altrincham
“If ever a restaurant warranted the cliché ‘small but perfectly formed’, it’s this dinky family-run pasta joint. Sugo’s communal tables, hard benches and noisy hubbub aren’t to everyone’s taste, but doubters are soon won over by the ‘spot-on service and excellent food…’
Sugo Pasta Kitchen, 22 Shaw’s Rd, Altrincham WA14 1QU
Lily’s Vegetarian Cuisine, Ashton-Under-Lyne
“Lily’ has garnered huge amounts of goodwill in a district of Manchester’s largely untroubled by masterful cheffery…Lily’s vegetarian Indian food is every plant-based eater’s idea of a good time.”
Lily’s Vegetarian Indian Restaurant, 75-83 Oldham Road, Ashton OL6 7DF
0161 339 4774
The Creameries, Chorlton
“Lashings of greenery make a hard-edged space feel romantic-it’s deliberately very casual with big communal tables and everything on blackboards- but the real love here is reserved for the baker’s oven, which produces fabulous bread that’s the cornerstone of the menu at lunch or dinner.”
The Creameries, 406 Wilbraham Rd, Manchester M21 0SD
“A hit with Altrincham residents, this unpretentious tapas bar has earned a reputation for running one of the most authentic venues in town.”
Porta Tapas Bar, 50 Greenwood St, Altrincham WA14 1RZ
“The bar has Spain covered, from cider to sherry, and the deli counter and kitchen offer fabulous cheeses, hams carved from the bone and tapas old and new.”
Lunya Catalonian Deli, Restaurant & Bar, Barton Arcade, Deansgate, Manchester M3 2BB
“Such is the success of Baratxuri- pronounced Barra-Churri and related to the equally popular Levanter- that owners Joe and Fiona Botham have knocked through to the former shop next door to create an additional dining room. They have also installed a wood-fired oven, sourced from Spain, as further proof of their commitment to bringing an authentic taste of the Basque country to Lancashire.”
Barratxuri, 1 Smithy St, Ramsbottom, Bury BL0 9AT
Hispi, East Didsbury
“Like it’s siblings (Sticky Walnut, Burnt Truffle and Wreckfish), this place mixes a come-as-you-please vibe with unquestionable value, upbeat cooking and a sense of fun-a formula that’d guaranteed to win over the local populace.”
Hispi, 1C School Ln, Manchester M20 6RD
Indian Tiffin Room, First Street
“The big, bustling space, with siblings in Leeds and in Cheadle, is thoughtfully zoned, well-staffed and chock full of colourful knick-knackery. It is possible- advisable, even- to build a meal here entirely on small plates.”
Indian Tiffin Rooms, Chapel St, Cheadle SK8 1BR
also First Street, 4RL, 1 First St, Manchester M15.
Volta, West Didsbury
“It’s upstart sibling The Refuge may be making headlines in Manchester, but Volta is still a strong presence on the streets of West Didsbury. Modern bistro-style surrounds set the scene for a menu of small plates ‘inspired by our travels.”
Volta, 167 Burton Road, West Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2LN
Indique, West Didsbury
“In suburban restaurant terms, nothing says ‘posh Indian’ like crushed velvet, feature walls and slates (not plates). Indique is a fine example of the genre, attracting support for its classy poppadum trays and a shortish menu of well-crafted food.”
Indique, 110-112 Burton Rd, Manchester M20 1LP
Mi & Pho, Northenden
“The best Vietnamese food for miles,’ thought one reader of this casual, modest and very affordable South Manchester eatery.”
Mi & Pho, 384 Palatine Rd, Northenden, Wythenshawe, Manchester M22 4FZ
The Pasta Factory, City Centre
“Handy for the Arndale and Manchester Arena, the compact Pasta Factory boasts a simple interior done up on a shoestring. But there’s an authenticity here, a passion for simple things done well. And that passion is pasta, freshly made in-house.”
The Pasta Factory, 77 Shudehill, Manchester M4 4AN