It’s amazing to see just how popular brunch has become in Manchester over the last few years, with pretty much every single establishment offering up dedicated menus – especially when the weekend comes around.
There’s a wide spectrum of venues offering an almost overwhelming range of dishes, from the classics such as Eggs Benedict or the Full English, through to more ‘exotic’ offerings, including Japanese brunch, Mexican and even Indian, where Dishoom have re-created their very own bustling 1970s Bombay cafe, serving up copius Bacon Naans and Chai.
So, here’s our pick of the best breakfast and brunch spots in Manchester and in the ‘burbs…
The Koffee Pot
A Manchester institution, The Koffee Pot at the top of Oldham Street have been serving the great hungover masses of Manchester for absolutely ages now and they’ve got it down to an art. They have a range of British brekkies available from the traditional Full English to a Scottish, Irish and even a Welsh breakfast to tuck into. So grab yourself a huge ‘Bin Yin’ Scottish breakfast (with haggis and square sausage) an Irn Bru and you enjoy your weekend. You deserve it.
The Koffee Pot, 84-86 Oldham St, Manchester M4 1LE
One of the best brunch spots in Manchester, I seemingly can’t stop banging on about just how good Blanchflower is, and you’ll be the same after a visit. Right in the heart of Altrincham, Blanchflower pride themselves on making every single thing on their menu in-house, and what a menu it is. Always changing, always moving and always improving, no two visits to Blanchflower are the same, and they seemingly manage to excel in complex, intricate brunch dishes, just as masterfully as the classic bacon butty.
Blanchflower, 12-14 Shaw’s Rd, Altrincham WA14 1QU
This Ancoats institution have made a big name for themselves over the last couple of years in part due to their outstanding Brunch offering, one which, when added to their equally excellent Roast Dinner, make Elnecot a very popular weekend destination. That doesn’t mean that you have to wait for weeks before you can get a booking on a Saturday or Sunday though, as their brunch dishes are available until 3pm every day, and you should definitely try their Crispy Pork Belly – it’s out of this world good.
Elnecot, Cutting Room Square, 41 Blossom St, Ancoats, Manchester M4 6AJ
Federal on the edge of the Northern Quarter quickly became one of the cities hottest for brunch thanks to the team poaching, toasting and Instagramming their way into the heart of Mancunians. Open daily from around 7.30am (8am at the weekends) with brunch served all day, and breakfast before 12. Think banana bread with vanilla mascarpone, halloumi and shrooms, or eggs any way on toasted sourdough. The independent and locally owned coffee shop brings Antipodean café culture to the rainy city through its varied range of breakfast and brunch options. Their additional (and larger) site on Deansgate is well worth a visit if you’re in the area.
Federal, 9 Nicholas Croft, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4 1EY
Home to probably the best breakfast sausage I’ve ever eaten, TROVE is not just a Levenshulme institution, it’s now become an Ancoats one too. They make their own bread, cakes, brownies, tables, cutlery, eggs and everything else in between. They do an awful lot and it’s all very, very impressive. Popping into TROVE on a weekend morning is a revelation, and one that will leave you both satisfied and yearning to come back. Last time I visited I was in a good mood for the rest of the day, which is highly unusual and so TROVE should be commended for that alone. Get them a blue plaque or something.
5 Murray St, Manchester M4 6HS
1032 Stockport Rd, Manchester M19 3WX
Ezra & Gil
Another Northern Quarter brunch and coffee staple, Ezra & Gill is a proper smart neighbourhood hangout with a simple but excellent food menu and a long list of coffee, tea and smoothies on hand to perk you up in the mornings. Their brunch offering is served all day and features everything that you’d expect but done exceptionally well. Their Classic ‘E&G’ Breakfast is a must-try as is the Smashed Pumpkin on Toast – a twist on a true classic.
Ezra & Gil, 20 Hilton St, Manchester M1 1FR
Home to the legendary Bacon Naan, Dishoom is one helluva breakfast and brunch gaff, and sitting in there eating and drinking chai, you’ll feel like you’re actually in a café in Mumbai (and in the 70s). There’s a ton of dishes on offer, from cooked breakfasts to fruits, grains and breads. No visit would be complete without tucking into a Bacon Naan though, and perhaps some of their unique breakfast cocktails on the side. If you’re going to treat yourself to brunch out, you might as well have some booze while you’re at it.
Dishoom, 32 Bridge St, Manchester M3 3BT
All the Shapes
All the way over in Prestwich, All the Shapes has been making ripples on the brunch front for a while now, so it’s probably about time you went to check what all the fuss is about. They serve Brunch from Thursday – Sunday until 4pm and their menu is extensive. There’s a new Mexican slant on the dishes on offer, such as the always excellent Huervos Rancheros – all done with an attention to detail which leaves many city centre establishments in the dust.
All the Shapes, 8 Warwick St, Prestwich, Manchester M25 3HN
The Smithfield Social
A post-lockdown addition to Thomas Street in the Northern Quarter, The Smithfield Social has already made a big impression on the people of the city with their daily brunch offering – which is available until 4pm! It’s all about the quality of the ingredients in here, with only the very best eggs, top-quality bacon and sausages and easily one of the best Shakshuka’s you’ll ever eat. The ‘Social’ English Breakfast is outstanding, and their ‘Al’s Special’ breakfast sandwich is a must. Enjoy alongside a few pints and perhaps a cocktail or two.
The Smithfield Social, 53 – 55 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1NA
Another Heart to Feed
Another Heart To Feed has certainly been around the houses over the past 5 years or so, starting off just near Blackfriars before moving down to West Didsbury and now – well, they’re sitting pretty in a lovely spot on Stevenson Square in the NQ. Smashed avocado is a speciality here, topped with a perfectly poached egg and a smattering of beetroot hummus. A class act all round. Oh, and lots of natty wine!
Another Heart to Feed, 220 Burton Rd, Manchester M20 2LW
An absolute institution in itself, Trof is always a very safe bet when it comes to food – especially brunch. Served from 10am – 2pm, you can scrape yourself out of bed any time and still get that order in and when looking at the menu, you’re going to be damn happy you made the effort. Their English Brekkie is fantastic and comes in both Veggie and Vegan variations too. I’m a massive fan of their Chorizo Hash which is good enough to make even the most miserable drunkard happy. Trof is always a great place to sit, relax and chat, eat some good food, slurp some cocktails and listen to some great tunes.
Trof NQ, 8 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1EU
Foundation Coffee House
With three locations across the city, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better bit of brekkie and brunch than Foundation. They’ve recently welcomed Lazy Tony’s Lasagne and Kong’s Chicken Shop to their kitchens, but before then – during the day – they’re still serving up some cracking brunch dishes, including their new French Toast Crumpet, a superb Chorizo Hash and the classic Foundation Benedict. This place is easily up there as one of the best brunches in the entire city, made even better with the baked goodies from Batard.
Foundation Coffee House
Sevendale House, Lever St, Manchester M1 1JB
11 Portland St, Manchester M1 3HU
48-50 Whitworth St, Manchester M1 6LS
If you’ve managed to spend the whole evening in Schloss, dancing on tables and drinking pint after pint of Weissbier, then the only course of action in the morning would be to head straight back there for one of the city’s biggest and most impressive cooked breakfasts – featuring a fantastic German sausage as its centre piece. The on-site bakery also makes the best bread ever, and the best cronuts ever. Basically, anything from the bakery is a winner.
Albert’s Schloss, 27 Peter St, Manchester M2 5QR
A key player in the brunch scene for the last few years, Cottonopolis have continued its exceptional offering with its new ‘Balearic Brunch’ menu on the weekends – a fusion of Japanese flavours and Ibiza island vibes. The food is still on point, with unique twists on brunch classics, such as their Teriyaki Mushrooms on Sourdough, Cured Salmon Crumpets and Pulled Pork Bibimbap topped with a crispy fried egg. There’s also Sushi and Bao Buns on there to top everything off.
Cottonopolis, 16 Newton St, Manchester M1 2AE
0161 236 5144
Much like it’s Altrincham-based sister venue, Mackie Mayor is pretty much designed for brunch, with a varied offering from the many food establishments adorning the exterior of their interior walls. There’s the always reliable Honest Crust, and of course Tender Cow all serving up absolute scorchers. The atmosphere is great here too, so bring along your little kids, that £2000 dog and enjoy yourself for the whole day.
Mackie Mayor, Eagle St, Manchester M4 5JY
Ducie Street Warehouse
A relatively new addition to the brunch scene, Ducie Street Warehouse have come out of the pandemic firing on all cylinders with a brand-new Head Chef, Andrew Green, who’s put together a weekend brunch offering that’ll blow your mind. His ‘DSW Breakfast’ is a thing of beauty, while his loaded Sourdoughs are as imaginative as they are tasty. You should try the Bacon Butty too – one of the best ‘posh’ bacon butties you can put into your mouth.
Ducie Street Warehouse, Ducie St, Manchester M1 2TP
19 Café Bar
An unsung brunch hero in tucked away on Lever Street in the Northern Quarter, 19 Café & Bar have been slogging away down here for a few years now and they’ve pretty much completed it. You’ll never be disappointed in here, as the dishes are numerous and the portions are massive – especially when you’re faced with a huge pile of pancakes loaded with enough Biscoff to quarantine a retirement village. Their Full English Brekkie is superb too, as is their Breakfast Club, Benedicts… basically everything.
19 Café Bar, 19 Lever St, Manchester M1 1BY
Pot Kettle Black
With a shiny new addition to their arsenal over at MODA at Angel Gardens on the cusp of the NQ, the team at PKB have moved well and truly into the upper echelons of brunch greatness – and we’ve never been happier. The new spot is almost twice the size of their long-standing Barton Arcade café and they’ve also expanded and improved the food menu, drinks offering and opening hours for us all. Oh, and they’ve just recently introduced a new Bottomless Brunch at Barton Arcade for £30pp.
Pot Kettle Black
Barton Arcade, Manchester M3 2BW
Angel Gardens, 1 Rochdale Rd, Manchester M4 4GE
Didsbury’s independent eatery just off Burton Road is a brunch paradise serving fresh coffee, food, pastries, juice and more! The menu has all the classics, with the Full Didsbury being a firm favourite – a South Manchester take on the infamous builders breakfast, complete with smoked Cheshire bacon, sausage, egg, homemade hash, black pudding, tomatoes, rosemary and sea salt mushrooms and sourdough toast, all for just £12.
Thyme Out, 147 Nell Ln, West Didsbury, Manchester M20 2LG
The Pen & Pencil
Definitively the most ‘bottomless’ of all bottomless brunches ever. No bottoms whatsoever. The Pen & Pencil generously offer as much food and drink as you can stomach in return for £40. It’s silly, really. On the last Saturday of every month, you have from 10am – 1pm to fill your boots and day-drink to your hearts content. Plus, their pancakes with bacon, maple syrup and pecans is unrivalled on the Manchester brekkie scene. And, of course, the Bloody Marys, Amstel, Prosecco and Mimosas are free-flowing. A word of advice: wear your most forgiving joggers, or face the food-baby.
The Pen & Pencil, Fourways House, 57 Hilton St, Manchester M1 2EJ
Transport yourself to the sun-kissed isle of Sicily every weekend with a banging breakfast menu that’s served until 12pm. There’s classic Arancini balls, pancakes, French toast and best of all – a fully loaded Full Italian Breakfast. You’ll also find Sicilian Egg Benedict, Avocado Burchettas and some pretty special Breakfast Boards that come with pastries, meats, cheese and a bottle of Prosecco. There’s also bottomless options available every Friday and Sunday.
Sicilian NQ, 14 Turner St, Manchester M4 1DZ
0161 834 7800
Not content with supplying some of the city’s very best pastries and baked goods from their tiny New Islington kitchen for so many years, the Pollen team have recently opened a brand-new location at garden neighbourhood KAMPUS, which is around 5x bigger and comes with a huge kitchen and pastry development space. A bigger space means the opportunity for a bigger menu of breakfast and brunch dishes – all produced with the same care and attention as you’ve come to expect from a team at the top of their game.
Cotton Field Wharf, 8 New Union St, Manchester M4 6FQ
42 Aytoun St, Manchester M1 3GL
A new weekly offering from The Firehouse is their ‘Day Club’ a menu of brunch specials including Breakfast pitas, house sourdough toasts, avocados, shrooms, salmon, super soft scrambled eggs, their own brunch sauces, smoothie bowls, honey buns, granolas and more. Alongside fresh juices and coffee & Day Club Cocktails. There’s also the option to go bottomless on drinks for an additional £25 – with cocktails, spritz, pilsner and Prosecco all available to guzzle!
The Firehouse, 40 Swan St, Manchester M4 5JG
The Bay Horse Tavern
A traditional Victorian boozer right in the heart of the Northern Quarter, The Bay Horse Tavern have a fantastic Brunch menu that they serve until 2pm every single day. There’s all of the classics on there, including one of the city’s best Full English Breakfasts (which comes with bottomless builder’s tea or filter coffee). On the weekends, they offer Bottomless Brunch too for just £30 per person.
The Bay Horse Tavern, 35-37 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1NA
A speciality coffee house, bar and brunch spot in Ancoats, Mule arrived in the neighbourhood at the tail end of 2020 and has been impressing locals ever since. It’s home to some fantastic breakfast and brunch dishes, and they serve up what is probably considered to be the best Bloody Mary in the city centre. In the evenings they transform into a Ramen Bar too – which you’ll discover if you stick around for long enough.
Mule, 13 Blossom St, Ancoats, Manchester M4 5AF
An all-day brunch to dinner neighbourhood dining spot in Didsbury Village, Seven54 offer a massive brunch menu, complete with specially designed Brunch Cocktails should you want a cheeky little tipple. They’ve got some exquisite Benedict’s, a huge Steak & Eggs, loaded French Toasts, and a massive Full English Breakfast, with added Veggie and Vegan options to boot. This place is fantastic for sitting down, relaxing and watching the world go by underneath the awning – you can find yourself losing a few hours in here no problem.
Seven54, 754 Wilmslow Rd, Didsbury, Greater, Manchester M20 2DW