When I was there though it was just as good as it’s always been – a great success story of turning a once dead town into a bustling hub of food, drink and culture. Oldham, Rochdale & Ashton – take note.
Of course, a trip to Alty would not be complete without a visit to their world-famous market, and don’t worry – you don’t need to buy a sausage dog and some Scandi clobber to enjoy it. There’s some fantastic food establishments in here including some amazing pizzas from Honest Crust, some proper mint pies from the Great North Pie Co. and of course – those lovely Tender Cow creations. There’s plenty for you if you’re thirsty too including some of the best wines in Manchester, a few odd little IPAs that have been brewed to a 2000-year-old recipe and enough fizz to sink a Greek catamaran. Everything under one roof. Be careful though – it can get seriously busy – especially on the weekend.
Altrincham Market & Market House, 26 Market St, Altrincham WA14 1PF
A relative newbie on the Altrincham scene, Tre Ciccio have been smashing it since opening earlier in the year – specialising in some wonderful pizzas as well as chicken – a combination that is a little unexpected but not at all unwelcome. When you first go through the doors you’ll see their huge pizza oven which magically transforms balls of dough and cheese into sizable disks of cheesy heaven. I must also wholeheartedly recommend their Rotolini which are little pizza ‘bites’ stuffed with cured ham, fior di latte cheese and tomato. They’re the best thing I’ve ever eaten. Well, they’re up there on the list anyway.
Tre Ciccio, 4a Moss Ln, Altrincham WA14 1BA
Sugo Pasta Kitchen
It seems that everyone is going crazy for Italian food down in Altrincham and many would say that Sugo is mostly to blame for its popularity. Tucked away opposite the market, Sugo do Italian food like it should be done with fresh ingredients, freshly made pasta and gallons of olive oil so good that you could guzzle it like wine. They’ve recently opened in Ancoats too so they must be doing something right and a visit is a must if you’re in Altrincham, even if you’re not hungry.
Sugo Pasta Kitchen, 22 Shaw’s Rd, Altrincham WA14 1QU
Porta Tapas Bar
I don’t think there is any other food in the world that I’d rather eat than a lovely bit of Spanish Tapas and if you feel the same – a trip to Porta should definitely be on the list. When I was there last I went well too far and ate way too much. Everything was perfect though – especially their Ox Cheek with nuts and those amazing little Padron Peppers that everyone loves. They’ve also got a great selection of Spanish wines to tuck into, most of which are perfect for making a frosty Calimocho to go with your mound of Patatas Bravas.
Porta Tapas Bar, 50 Greenwood St, Altrincham WA14 1RZ
Mort Subite & Belgian Bar
I find it pretty unusual that there are two speciality Belgian beer bars within such a small place in such a small town but if I’m being honest with you – I’m definitely not complaining. There’s nothing better than cracking open an ice-cold bottle of Delirium on a dark Autumn day and getting absolutely ratted by only drinking half a glass. There is the brilliant Mort Subite and the imaginatively named Belgian Bar, both offering a massive range of Belgian lagers, ales and the odd bit of Lambic, which is a beer but it’s just a little bit weirder.
What even is Cambodian food?! I barely even know where Cambodia is, never mind the kind of grub they’re knocking back down there. Okay, so I do know where it is but you get the idea – Cambodian food isn’t exactly the most common cuisine for restaurants but Angkor Soul have managed to slip themselves into a tiny little niche and have been banging out some fantastic dishes ever since. Finest writer Tim visited the restaurant a few weeks back and was very impressed with what they had on offer. He noted “Altrincham has another excellent eatery on its hands here, and also one offering something little bit different, Angkor’s most definitely got soul.”
Angkor Soul, 20 Ashley Road, Altrincham, Trafford, WA14 2DW
New Market Square
As if Altrincham needed any more markets, the gang from Altrincham Market have added New Market Square to their arsenal which is home to a constantly changing roster of anything from street food, antiques and even the odd specialist deli. It might get a little bit too wet and chilly to sit outside in a couple of months but until then – bring a jacket and wear one of them umbrella hats and brace the elements because these little beauties are usually too good to miss. They sometimes have a cracking little antiques market here too where you can buy a bit of old tat in which to impress your loser mates with when they come round to your house.
The Con Club
Even though I’d like to punch David Cameron in the face more than anyone else ever, living or dead, any political connotations at The Con Club stop firmly at the name. It’s called this because it is housed in the old Working Men’s Conservative Club which is the perfect definition of an oxymoron if ever there was one. The place shut down and the owners of The Con Club moved in – turning it into an excellent all-day restaurant and boozer who serve up a cracking breakfast and a Bloody Mary that will blow your face off. With the vast selection of booze they have on offer it’s also a great place for a cheeky few cocktails too.
The Con Club, 48 Greenwood St, Altrincham WA14 1RZ
You can’t get a sandy-beached, Mediterranean island in Altrincham; but you can get Sardus Cucina’s authentic Sardinian cuisine and wine – and that’s close enough. Named after a mythological hero, this Italian restaurant is peak rustic, shabby-chic. They love to look like they haven’t tried, but obviously they have because the food is so bloody good. It’s exactly the kind of cuisine I’ll pledge to recreate myself at home, but never can do it justice. How hard can Spaghettini Alle Vongole actually be? Obviously, very hard, because mine is never as good as Sardus Cucina’s. (Tell me all your secrets.)
Sardus Cucina, 14-16 Ashley Rd, Altrincham WA14 2DW
‘Attention to detail’ may as well have been invented by the guys at Blanchflower. You get the sense that nothing goes unconsidered – take, for example, their sourdough. It’s literally just a loaf of bread that you get a slice of to go with your soup. But at Blanchflower, every individual batch is handmade over the course of 3 whole days (that’s 72 hours. Just for bread alone). I’m not even patient enough to wait 3 mins 30 seconds for a microwave curry, so I can’t help being impressed by this sourdough business. Of course, they don’t just do bread. Their brunch is unrivalled: always Instagram-worthy, but never Instagram-focused. It’s just quality food designed to taste great – they can’t help that it looks so good.
Blanchflower, 12-14 Shaw’s Rd, Altrincham WA14 1QU