Barely a week goes by without another new bar or restaurant opening in the Northern Quarter, but if you can only get to one this month, then make it new(ish) kid on the block – West Corner.
This all day American diner, created by the team of Hatters Hostel, is now occupying the former Koffee Pot unit under the hostel. Influenced by NYC, West Corner is already proving a popular brunch option with the waitress telling us that over the weekends they already have queues out of the door. Lunch is also already popular for those working nearby, with the diner’s Reuben & French dip sandwiches making many an appearance on Instagram and Twitter.
We opted to take advantage of the all-day option, and headed to the diner for dinner to check out the food menu. Even on a busy Friday night in the NQ, there was a pleasant chilled vibe. The windows are lit with neon lights, with comfy leather booths, or the option to sit on the window benches and watch the night play out in Stevenson Square.
We were sat in one of the huge booths by the window as the waitress brought over water and talked us through the drinks menu. We opted for the cocktail of the week, an Apricot Breakfast Martini made with local Three Rivers Gin. Just sweet enough, a refreshing way to start the night.
The menu is just one page, with a solid selection of sandwiches, burgers, and salads, as well as some more refined options including beef brisket, curried hake & clam chowder, or Butchers Quarter 7oz Sirloin.
After seeing multiple mouth-watering posts on Instagram, I opted for the Cogburn Burger, a free range buttermilk fried chicken breast on a sesame seed bun, with American & swiss cheese and smoked black pepper mayo. The chicken breast had a good amount of crisp coating, and was huge, at a really reasonable price of £7.50.
My partner opted for the glazed BBQ pork belly rib at £8, served with a side of cabbage with apple & mustard dip. The pork wasn’t too fatty as sometimes it can be, instead melt in the mouth.
We opted to share a selection of sides with our main, and ordered the sweet potato fries, onion rings, and slaw. The sweet potato fries arrived crisp and hot, while the slaw had a lovely fresh tang. The onion rings though were a stand out winner, coated in the deli’s homemade batter with just the right amount of saltiness.
As she cleared our mains, the waitress suggested we try out one of the desserts, and as two avid peanut butter fans we couldn’t resist the sound of the chocolate and peanut butter hot fudge Sunday, with Cheshire farm ice cream – divine.
After the meal, we headed downstairs to the Norther Quarter’s newest, and still relatively secret bar, The Corner Cocktail Club.
While we entered the new bar via West Corner, the best way to access is from outside via a secret door complete with buzzer on Spear Street just off Stevenson Square. The best way to ensure entry is to book, as while the bar is still relatively unknown this one won’t stay secret for long.
It’s a cool basement bar with subway tiles, low lighting and comfy booths, as well as a steady stream of old movies projecting onto the far wall giving a real intimate feel to the bar. Down here, the menu is considerably more sophisticated, the choice of drinks split by glass type, with the option of a highball, old fashioned, coupette or punch.
There’s no need to queue at the bar as there is table service. The waitress chatted us through the drinks menu & poured us a glass of water, and we opted to start with a Medicine Man & a Heavy Manners. The Medicine Man was served as a highball, with Three Rivers gin, Lemon juice, Elderflower tonic & grapefruit bitters, while the Heavy Manners was served as a punch, a mixture Dark Matters Rum, Pineapple juice, Cocolopez & Lime Juice.
The bar has an impressive cocktail selection ranging from £7-9, as well as a bar stocked with reputable spirits from Swedish vodka to smoked whiskey.
The team want to ensure customers get the right experience, and so at the moment table reservations are required on Friday and Saturday evenings from 7pm onwards. To book contact Adam@hattersgroup.com.
We recommend this one is worth seeking out, for both food and drinks. To see the daily specials in the deli, check out the diners Instagram page.
West Corner, 21 Hilton Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M1 1JJ
0161 241 70 70