Everyone loves a good steak, well maybe not everyone, but you probably do if you're reading this, so well done - as long as you don't like it well done. Anyway whether you order yours charred, grilled, fried or still mooing, a proper piece of beef is rightfully up there, taking its place nestled alongside chips, in foodie heaven.
And as luck would have it there are a fair few places in Manchester that take their meat pretty seriously too, giving steak the respect it deserves, so here are 5 places to grab yourself some beefy bliss.
The first thing you notice in Gaucho is the cow hide interiors adorning each wall. There are some places you could take a vegetarian and keep them happy while you chow down on cow flesh, but I would suggest this ain't one of them. If the decor doesn't put them off their dinner, then the presentation of your choice of cuts in their rawest form may well do, you can pick your favourite meat from a board of beautifully marbled beef. In Argentina they take steak pretty seriously and the same is true of this place, so there are plenty of options. Luckily for the indecisive (or downright greedy) there's the tasting plate which includes the cuts chorizo, vacío and entraña fina, it's not to be missed.
2A St Mary's St, Manchester M3 2LB
0161 833 4333
Four words that don't inspire the greatest amount of confidence in the quality of a dining experience – All You Can Eat - over at Fazenda though, they like to use the term continuous tableside service. Whatever you want to call it these guys know their meat, and it's all top notch. Pay their passadores a visit and you can chomp your way through fifteen different cuts, including seven bits of steak. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy both quality and quantity, so stick your big boy pants on, skip the salad bar and get stuck in.
1 The Avenue, Manchester M3 3AP
0161 207 1183
Grill on New York Street
It's not just South America flying the bovine flag in Manchester, we've got plenty of British beef round these parts too. None more so than at Grill on New York Street where you can find a special Best of British menu alongside all your usual favourite cuts, you can even have your steak with buttery mash if you want to really show your patriotic side. There's also the excellent selection of wines and expertly mixed cocktails you'd expect from a Living Ventures restaurant. Proper food and drink, no messing, you've got all your boxes ticked with this one basically.
New York St, Manchester M1 4BD
0161 228 1444
Big on burgers, wings and most things in between, Solita is a meat eater's paradise. So perhaps it shouldn't be much of a surprise that they do a pretty good line in steaks too. Head to one of their four branches in the Northern Quarter, Didsbury, Prestwich or Preston and choose from premium grain fed options or, if you really want to treat yo' self, get involved with the Solita signature steak. Their French trimmed bone in ribeye steak is dry aged in-house for 40 days then sold to you by weight, so you know you're getting your money's worth. Maybe next time skip the Big Manc and go for a big slab of steak instead.
Turner St, Manchester M4 1DW
0161 839 2200
Somewhere a bit less beefy, Gray's Larder down in Chorlton serve up some inventive dishes using classic British ingredients. If that sounds like your sort of thing pop in and give their regularly changing menu a look - on my visit I went for something rather more traditional with their Lancashire scotch egg and home made brown sauce, I can thoroughly recommend it. The reason they made it on this list though is they also do a pretty darn good rib-eye with peppercorn sauce. This being Chorlton you could probably ask for it with a side of kale too, we went for the more sensible option of their delicious larder chips, grilled mushrooms and tomato.
123 Manchester Rd, Manchester M21 9PG
0161 286 1961
Better known for their small plates than big steaks, Volta have been gone way past 'hidden gem' to become a West Didsbury institution, so much so that the team behind the restaurant (DJs Justin Crawford and Luke Cowdrey better known as the Unabombers) have also moved in to The Refuge at the Palace Hotel to curate their food too. Their cosmopolitan menus span the globe with their produce and processes, but never let it be said they don't give the public what they really want, and we want steak! You can choose standard chips or sweet potato fries to accompany your chargrilled hanger steak, but when the meat is this good quite frankly who cares what's on the side of it?
167 Burton Rd, Manchester M20 2LN
0161 448 8887
And finally another venue where steak is the definitely the specialist subject. Since opening in Manchester last year, Hawksmoor has become the discerning carnivore's choice for dinner and drinks. A beautiful dining area, and carefully selected cocktails for every taste and occasion, combine to play the perfect supporting act to some of best bits of beef money can buy. If you're short on time (or money) there's also the express menu offering two courses for £25, but we think once you're inside you'll probably want to hang around a little while longer.
184 - 186 Deansgate, Manchester M3 3WB
0161 836 6980