There is something really glamorous about a trip to the theatre. It’s been around for hundreds, even thousands of years and yet it’s still such a luxury to most of us.
So with this in mind, it’s only right to treat yourself to a lovely dinner before your trip to the show and we have selected the best Pre-Theatre menus in town, just for you. The theatre is special, so treat yourself to a special dinner and make your night even more magical.
I’m Italian, and Don Giovanni is my favourite Italian restaurant in Manchester, so what does that tell you? Its good- very good- but what’s better is their insanely cheap Pre-Theatre menu that is available 5pm-7pm every single day. Starters include some Italian classics such as Caprese salad, Soup of the Day and Bruschetta, and the same can be said for the mains which feature Lasagne, Penne Arrabbiata, Grilled Salmon and Gnocchi amongst many more mouth-watering dishes. Two courses will set you back just £16.95, but if you’re greedy like me, you can nab yourself another course for just £3 more. Fancy a Crème Brulee, Tiramisu or scoop of Gelato to finish off your meal? When in Rome, ey? (Or Manchester for that matter…)
If I sat and listed all of the awards La Bandera’s has won, we would be here all day, so im going to save us all the time and effort by summarising that it’s pretty amazing. Located on Deansgate- the heart of the city centre- there is no better place to offer a Pre-Theatre menu because it’s literally in walking distance from most venues. So here’s the deal- you can chow down on one starter, one main and a glass of Rioja wine or a beer for just £17.95 which is a lot cheaper than most places, wouldn’t you agree? The starter menu is essentially tapas, and you can choose for dozens of to-die-for plates including Patatas Bravas, King Prawns in white wine, Chickpea stew and Red wine Chorizo. For main, there are a massive selection of fresh fish, meat and rice dishes with a classic Italian flare, including Fat Iron steak, Paprika Seabass or Squid and Squid ink. And if you fancy something sweet, add on a dessert for just £3 more.
Zouk ceases to amaze me with its inventive ways of standing out from the crowd, and their new Pre-Theatre menu is no anomaly. Two courses will cost you just £15.95 and three courses- which comes with complimentary popadoms and pickles- is just £19.95 a head. Starters include a sensational Lam Kebab, fiery, Spicy Prawn Cakes and a Humous platter, whereas mains you sink your teeth into some creamy Butter Chicken, Chilli Paneer, Zouk Burger and spicy Railway Curry. And for dessert, I’d highly recommend the Mumbai Mess consisting of deconstructed cheesecake, raspberries, cream cheese, ginger and biscuit; although, the Chocolate Fondant and the Ice Cream Sundae sound pretty damn good as well…
Do you like the sound of a three-course meal with bottomless Prosecco, House Red or White Wine? Does it make your ears prick up even more to learn that its only £35 per person? Harvey Nichols may have a reputation for being posh, but there is nothing snobby about their fabulously cheap Prix Fixe menu which is perfect before a night at the Theatre. If you don’t want to be shit-faced for your show (who wouldn’t?) you can opt for two courses for £22 or three for £25 a head if you’re being sensible unlike most of us. Available Monday-Saturday from 5 pm, starters include Pea Soup, Smoked-haddock fishcake or Pulled Pork. For main, you can feast on Chicken Breast with sweet corn puree, Cod Fillet with Truffle Mash, Red onion and Goat’s Cheese Tart or a 225g Holcroft Sirloin Steak at a £6 surcharge. Of course, there is also plenty of sides and desserts to choose from, but why don’t you do the logical thing and just take a look at the menu yourself when you’ve booked in? This is a deal you don’t want to miss.
Skint? Yeah, aren’t we all. The theatre isn’t cheap and a lot of the time, Pre-Theatre meals aren’t either. The Anthologist at St.Peter’s Square on the other hand, is. I reviewed this restaurant when it opened a few months back and was blown away by the quality of the food, excellent standard of service and super chill vibes. As for their Pre-Theatre menu, it’s as good as you’d expect. For £15, you could get your hands on some Cheese and Porcini Croquettes to start and a D&M burger for main, or some Pan Fried Salmon for main and a Chocolate Brownie for dessert. I mean, that’s just a hand full of the incredible dishes on offer but why don’t you fork out an extra fiver and throw some dessert into the mix as well? Honestly, the Chocolate Brownie and Vanilla ice cream will leave you lost for words.
This is hands down, the nicest restaurant I’ve ever been to in Manchester. As its first official dinner, ever (fact!), I was the first person ever to experience their absolutely sensational food and service and I’ve never forgotten it since. If you’re planning on heading to the theatre anytime soon and want to treat your Mum, partner or friends to a particularly special meal, Mamucium’s Statuto set menu is just what you need. Starters include a Prawn and Crayfish Cocktail, Leek and Herb Soup, Grilled Artichoke or my favourite Italian starter, Prosciutto and Melon. Mains include Wild Boar Tortelloni, Traditional Fish and Chips, Roasted Breast of Chicken and Roast Vegetable Fritatta, whereas desserts include Apple and Caramel Crumble, A Selection of Ice Cream, Blueberry Pavlova or a Trio of Regional Cheeses. Two-courses will cost you £19.95 and Three-courses will be £24.95- but trust me when I say, it is absolutely worth every single penny.