October is actually a big month for a great harvest, there’s everything from beetroot to apples in season.
Things get cosier, portions get bigger and heartier and we opt for the kind of things that warm your cockles. We retreat to the dishes our mums made as we seek the warming comfort of nostalgia. It’s definitely the season for some tater hash.
Some people are opting for seasonal food to be more sustainable, getting more locally sourced produce is a great way of not only supporting your local economy but impacting the environment less - a lot less than flying over a pineapple because you fancy a pina colada-inspired fruit salad.
Some of Manchester’s best restaurants operate with regularly changing seasonal menus, offering the best of the British soil that month.
Veggies that are on top form in October include the likes of Beetroot, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Spinach, Pumpkins & Squash (of course!). Plus there’s fruit like Pears and even Autumn-fruiting raspberries up for pickings.
We’ve hand-picked some of the best dishes that are championing seasonal produce in beautiful and heartwarming dishes right here in the city, plus a handful of restaurants that offer up seasonal food too.
Aged Cumbrian Duck
Since opening in Ancoats, Edinburgh Castle has got a bit of a name for itself for its seasonal dishes and has even been crowned home of the Best Potato in Manchester. There are a good array of seasonal dishes to choose from menus that are available throughout the day. Although that October season duck looks absolutely incredible, we've also included this dish for it's buttered leek. Served alongside a confit leg bonbon, umeboshi and pine.
The River Restaurant at The Lowry Hotel
Tucked away in the five-star hotel, The River Restaurant serves up evolving dishes including the best British produce. The menu boasts an array of seasonal delights including Cornish Mackerel Fillet and Confit Duck Leg Sandwich.
Osma Kitchen & Bar
Coming in season late this month and early November, cauliflower is a classic this time of year whether you opt for something fancy like Osma's Cauliflower Soup or go for the classic cauliflower cheese with your roast dinner. There are tonnes you can do with the humble cauliflower and you'll find it on many menus across the city.
Kedgeree with Smoked Haddock
The kitchen at this Altrincham restaurant serves up delicious seasonal weekly specials showcasing a range of locally sourced ingredients. One dish from the menu boasting seasonal October fish is the Kedgeree Smoked Haddock. The dish comes served with a beautifully runny poached egg and crispy shallots. Keep up to date with their specials on their Instagram below.
Where The Light Gets In
During lockdown, the team at Stockport's Where The Light Gets In took time to tend their very own farm, as well as forge better relationships with the farmers and fishermen who supply them. As a result, their menu is now constantly evolving, "bending day-to-day with weather patterns, sea conditions and the earth's response." So you'll be treated to dishes like this one; Buttermilk-fried Carlingford oyster, preserved corn batter, smoked pear and Chinese mustard greens grown in their very own roof garden in Stockport town centre.
Lobster off the coast of Scotland is available all year round but it's tastiest and most succulent between April and November. This dish at the Ancoats favourite features fresh lobster chunks mixed with another in-season veg, creamy celeriac remoulade. Katsuobushi oil is drizzled on the top plus a sweet fish caramel sauce all packaged in a neat pancake.
Mary-Ellen McTague's restaurant in Chorlton has made national press time and time again for the incredible seasonal set menus and plenty of natural wine. While Mary-Ellen has been seriously busy in lockdown working with Eat Well MCR, The Creameries is now back open for lunch and supper. Food and drink aside, this place really is just stunning.
Higher Ground at Ducie Street Warehouse
Coming towards the end of its growing season, beetroot is so much more than pre-cut crinkled slices, packaged in a glass jar with seriously strong vinegar. At Higher Ground's kitchen takeover at Ducie Street, they're serving it sliced with salted blueberry, marjoram and goats curd. A fresh dish with strong and well-balanced flavours. Menu's change regularly so check their socials for what you can expect!
If seafood is for you, then it simply has to be this place. Reflecting the best produce they can get hold of, the food and wine list will change regularly. The first week of October saw a whole grilled witch sole, almond and ginger butter, pickled grape and fennel salad.
Let's be honest, it doesn't get much more Spooky Season than a pumpkin pie. Erst always serve up seasonal delights with delicious natural wines to match. This October they've got a Pumpkin Seed Frangipane with pear special. That's two in-season fruit and veg for the price of one.
The Jane Eyre
Another Ancoats spot serving up seasonal small plates with quality ingredients at the heart. The small plates feature quality, locally sourced ingredients all day every day. You can even get a roast on Sunday. There's some wonderful in season sides too, including cauliflower cheese, celeriac swede gratin and creamed leeks.