With the nights starting to draw in and ‘big coat’ season lurking just around the corner, we can’t help but turn our thoughts to Sunday roasts, steaming jugs of gravy and big glasses sploshing over with red wine.
It might be way too early to be uttering the ‘C’ word, but after one of the hottest and driest summers on record we’re very ready to get cosy, and nothing says that better on a wet and miserable day than a giant plate piled high with roasted meats, vegetables and gravy.
One of the most simple pleasures in life, there’s not much more comforting than this classic English staple. Let’s just say, we’re very keen for Manchester’s Sunday roast season to recommence in full.
Keep reading to discover our top picks for the best Sunday roasts in Manchester. It’s officially red wine season, baby. Dig in.
Where to go for a roast in Manchester city centre
The Jane Eyre
Not a reference to Charlotte Bronte, but rather to the owners’ mum, neighbourhood kitchen and cocktail bar The Jane Eyre is a must for any self-respecting cocktail lover. It also serves a cracking Sunday roast.
Start with ham hock and manchego croquettes or a salad of fennel, chilli and crab, before moving onto roast sirloin (£18), nut roast (14) or the selected ‘roast of the day’ (£18), all served with duck fat potatoes, honey roasted carrots, greens, carrot & swede mash, pork stuffing, Yorkshire puddings and gravy.
We’d recommend springing for sides, too. An extra £4.50 will get you a skillet of house cauliflower cheese or truffled potato puree. As for dessert, think tarte tatin (£7) or chocolate biscuit cake (£5), both served with ice cream on the side.
Housed in a former Victorian Courthouse on Deansgate, Hawksmoor manages to be chic, glamorous and entirely unpretentious all at once. Designed to share, roasts here can be split between two or three people – with starters, mains, sides and puddings all included and priced from just £50.
Mains choices include perfectly-pink cuts of bone-in prime rib, chateaubriand and sirloin, as well as Dartmouth lobster with garlic butter, whilst sides span the likes of creamed spinach, macaroni cheese, grilled bone marrow, carrots, roasties, cabbage and – or course — giant Yorkshire puddings.
We’re talking Yorkshire puddings bigger than your face, crispy beef fat roasties, unlimited jugs of bone marrow gravy, and an oozing skillet of cauliflower cheese made with a four-cheese blend of Ogleshield, mozzarella, Stichelton and ‘good Cheddar’.
Carnivalat Escape to Freight Island
Brought to Escape to Freight Island by Hawksmoor co-founder Richard Turner and the team behind iconic Liverpool bistro Belzan, Carnival celebrates open fire cooking and offers a Chef’s table experience like no other with a full view of the grill.
Priced at 2 courses for £25 or 3 for £29, mains choices include 34 day-aged rump of beef (served pink), roasted porchetta stuffed with peach, sage and pancetta, Mrs Kirkham’s cheese and onion pie, or two-person sharer ‘The Beast’, a chargrilled 1kg porterhouse steak with extra cauliflower cheese.
All served with orange–glazed carrots, summer greens, roasties, Yorkshire puddings and plenty of gravy, extra sides include grilled tenderstem with garlic butter, Lancashire cheese mash potato and herb crumbed cauliflower cheese.
The Bull & Bear
£39.50 for two courses or £46.50 for three, think indulgent mains like salted aged pork belly, dry-aged Hereford sirloin of beef, and confit autumn mushroom tart.
Each dish comes with its own selected sides, with add-ons like crushed black pepper swede, buttered sprout tops, and cauliflower cheese available at no extra cost.
Puddings, meanwhile, feature the likes of chocolate orange choux with hazelnut, Bailey’s ice cream and salted caramel sauce, “lemon meringue pie” with blackcurrant sorbet, as well as a cheese plate of truffled Baron Bigod, quince tart and truffle honey.
With the option to share a roast platter between two or order individual plates, The Refuge is not messing about with its roast dinners.
With a choice of Lancashire beef, rare breed pork loin, half-roast Cumbrian chicken, or a gorgeous vegan pithivier, prices start from £17. All roasts include a Yorkshire pudding, a selection of vegetables and gravy, but further sides like crispy stuffing balls, pigs in blankets and cheesy mash will set you back extra.
As for the roast platter (£44), order this and you can enjoy all three meats with thyme and salt roast potatoes, Vimto-braised red cabbage, glazed carrot, seasonal greens, Yorkshire pudding, cauliflower cheese, and a big pan of gravy. Not too shabby.
Served from 12pm, Sunday roasts at Evelyn’s put a twist on the traditional British weekend fare with a choice of exotic rubs and marinades. Choices here include mustard-rubbed beef sirloin, harissa buttermilk roast chicken, Morrocan marinaded lamb, all served with seasonal root veg and Evelyn’s gravy.
As for vegans, there’s a roasted cauliflower option served with all the trimmings and a special laksa gravy on offer, and if you don’t fancy that, the restaurant also serves a varied menu – with late brunch dishes available until 3pm.
If you’re a person who cares about where your food is sourced from, Elnecot is the place to come. Owner Michael Clay has excellent connections to local suppliers and celebrates quality British produce in every dish.
Served from 1.30pm until they run out, roast choices at this Ancoats favourite include dry aged Welsh wagyu beef, lemon and thyme corn fed Goosnargh chicken, crispy Yorkshire pork belly, slow-cooked shoulder of Yorkshire lamb and a vegetarian or vegan nut roast.
All served with roasties, fluffy Yorkshire puddings, stuffing, roasted carrots and parsnips, sauteed greens, cauliflower cheese and a rich gravy, prices start from £14.50 for nut roast and £16 for pork.
On Sundays between 12-6pm, Argentinian steakhouse Gaucho serves up its bottomless roast dinner. Specifically designed for overindulging, choose from three different joints of meat to enjoy with unlimited quantities of seasonal vegetables and Yorkshire puddings.
All Gaucho’s meat originates from Argentina and comes from premium Black-Angus cattle, bred at hand-selected farms in the southern province of La Pampa, South America. Every cut is cooked in its own drippings, then presented on steak boards alongside all the usual trimmings.
Priced at £32.50 per person, here you can. enjoy 90 minutes of non-stop feasting on prime steak (and make sure you really get your money’s worth).
With its own dedicated margarita and wild spirits bar, The FIrehouse on Swan Street is one of Manchester’s coolest new venues. Attached to Detroit pizza Ramona, it’s housed inside an old MOT garage and offers (as the name suggests) a selection of wood-fired meats alongside fluffy pittas and sides.
Come Sundays, though, the team also offers a roast with roast Cheshire beef rump, garlic and thyme chicken, slow-cooked lamb shoulder or vegan oyster mushroom wellington, with sides including Yorkshire puddings, crisp roast potatoes and flamed chipolatas
Elsewhere, think buttered greens, melting pots of cauliflower cheese, honey-roasted carrots and parsnips, and lashings of house gravy.
Where to go beyond the city centre
Station South, Levenshulme
The gravy at Station South is so good, that some customers famously drink it from the glass. The ‘cycle cafe for everyone’ has become something of a neighbourhood favourite since opening its doors this summer, and now we’ve got another reason to go. Roasts.
With giant Yorkshire puddings, heaps of potatoes and greens, the plates here are very generous – but you will have to spring an extra £1.50 for a jug of additional gravy. We reckon it works out fair enough though, thanks to the huge portion sizes.
Hispi, Didsbury Village
From the Elite Bistro team behind Sticky Walnut and Kala, this charming neighbourhood bistro in Didsbury Village is, without a doubt, one of the best places to grab a roast south of the city centre.
Priced at 2 courses for £25 or three for £29, mains include roast beef, pork belly, sirloin (for two) and chicken, each served with their own dedicated list of perfectly paired sides.
Elsewhere, you’ll find confit chicken terrine, beer battered salt pickles, pan-fired sea bass in a langoustine bisque and a chestnut mushroom and goats curd linguine. A must-visit this, trust us, and if the egg tart is on simply order it and don’t look back. You’re welcome.
The White Hart, Lydgate
For proper country feels, head to The White Hart at Lydgate for a bang-up Sunday feast. Priced at £29 for 2 courses or 3 for £35, those after a traditional roast can tuck into grass fed Hereford rump of beef, Easingwold pork belly or roasted Yorkshire chicken.
All roasts are served from 12-8pm with Yorkshire puddings, roasted potatoes, cauliflower cheese, honey glazed carrot, savoy cabbage, crispy stuffing, apple and red wine sauce. Alternatively, swing for the coronation cauliflower, crispy haddock and chips or pan-fried stone bass if you fancy something a little different.
The Pack Horse, Hayfield
This multi-award-winning country gastropub has had some impressive accolades of late, not least an ebullient new inclusion in the Michelin Guide.
All roasts here come served with crispy potatoes, carrot and swede mash, braising vegetables, buttered cabbage, Yorkshire pudding and gravy. Choose from Derbyshire beef sirloin, High Peak lamb shoulder slow roasted overnight, or a ‘chicken of the woods’ mushroom and truffled Baron Bigod tart with seaweed gravy.
A regular haunt of some of Glossop’s most esteemed foodies, technically it’s not in Manchester but we’re not letting that get in the way of a great scran – and neither should you.
Feature image –
Plans revealed to build Manchester’s tallest skyscraper – with 71st-floor restaurant
Plans have been revealed for a cluster of new skyscrapers in Manchester city centre, including one tower that would become the city’s tallest building.
Property developer Renaker, which was behind the huge Deansgate Square neighbourhood that transformed the city skyline, shared its proposals for the next phase of the Great Jackson Street Development.
The five new towers would bring 2,388 new homes to Manchester city centre, in an area that was previously used as surface car parks.
If approved, ‘The Lighthouse’ would stand at 71 storeys tall, overtaking Deansgate Square’s South Tower (64 storeys) to become Manchester’s tallest skyscraper.
It would also be the tallest building in the UK outside of London.
The proposals have put forward the idea of having a restaurant on the top floor of The Lighthouse, which would be the city’s highest food and drink establishment by a long way (the current record belongs to 20 Stories).
The other four towers would stand in the corners of a newly-created public square, and Renaker plans to build two of them at 51 storeys and two at
Romantic restaurants in Manchester that are perfect for Valentine’s Day 2023
With Valentine’s Day in Manchester fast approaching, the city’s restaurants and bars are gearing up to welcome couples wanting to celebrate the day.
With so many great restaurants in Manchester, if you’re looking to take your other half out to eat you are quite literally spoilt for choice.
For those lost in a sea of menus and wondering where to book, we thought we’d help make things a little bit easier by recommending some of our favourite romantic restaurants and a few other popular date night spots to help get you started.
Keep reading to discover our top picks for where to take your date in Manchester this Valentine’s Day.
Not many London brands successfully make the move up to Manchester, but one that has done it with aplomb is high-end steakhouse Hawksmoor.
It’s pricey but worth it, with a stunning wood-paneled cocktail bar (and bar menu) available next to the restaurant to help you get your date off to a flying start.
As a steakhouse, it’s not particularly great for vegetarians or vegans – although there are some nice fish dishes to be found on the menu. The meat here is chargrilled in the josper, whilst sides typically come laden with rich cheese, nutmeg and cream.
The aforementioned cocktail list is excellent, as is the wine list. One of the owner’s mums is actually a wine critic for The Guardian and her at-home cooking style, taking simple dishes and executing them very well, was one of the inspirations for the Hawksmoor menu today.
One of the best restaurants in Manchester by a long shot, it is run by a married couple – with Polish-born Kasia Hitchcock positioned out front and her chef-partner Franco Concli working away making dumplings in the back.
Spatzle (pictured above) is the house specialty, said to mirror sparrows in flight – hence the restaurant’s name. It’s best eaten with a simple sauce of butter and sage, but there are numerous sauce options – plus countless European dumplings, a fine sake selection and an organic wine list.
The hushed, sleek interiors, meanwhile, will have you convinced you’re somewhere in New York – not on the back streets of the Green Quarter – as well as fostering a sense of intimacy between you and your dining partner.
A visit to The Oystercatcher requires a trip out to Chorlton, but it’s well worth it to taste some of the best fish on offer in the city – often chargrilled in the josper oven for added flavour.
Getting a good seafood menu together is challenging in a city as landlocked as Manchester, and the lists change weekly at the restaurant in reflection of this.
Oysters dressed with shallot mignonette tend to be a mainstay, whilst a sample menu lists the likes of black sea bream, scallops, monkfish, seabass, sea trout, mussels and crab.
Sides are ordered separately, with choices like fennel gratin, chargrilled broccoli, hispi cabbage, triple cooked chips and more.
The Perfect Match
A charming little 26-cover bistro in the south Manchester neighbourhood of Sale, it’s not just the name that makes this spot a perfect choice for a romantic date.
Serving up some critically acclaimed British and European food with a beautiful hand-picked selection of wines, find rich and comforting dishes like lamb ragu gnocchi, baked bone marrow with truffle, and 32-day dry-aged red Hereford beef on its regularly-changing a la carte menu.
As for pudding? Tuck into the likes of popcorn and white chocolate posset with salted caramel, or enjoy a peanut butter pie with candied peanuts and a warming glass of Pedro Ximinez.
10 Tib Lane
With sultry low lighting, quality cocktails, £1 oysters and plenty of tucked-away seating spread over three floors, 10 Tib Lane could’ve been made for date night.
Serving a tantalising small plates menu alongside some beautiful low-intervention wines, its Cumbrae oysters with mignonette are a must-order to get your night going.
Followed up with the likes of steak tartare, lamb sweetbreads, duck in port sauce, bone marrow and pommes anna, and charred hispi cabbage in shallot sauce, foodies should be in absolute heaven.
Another award-winning, Michelin-recommended eatery, this time from the team behind the Levenshulme (and now also Ancoats) bakeries, Trove.
Open Tuesday to Saturday, with its concrete floors and relatively sparse settings, it’s the food here more than the decor that makes Erst so romantic.
A love of fermentation and pickling has clearly passed from one sibling’s kitchen into another. Plates here are ordered to share, with a list of 10 to choose from.
Each designed simply to showcase the natural flavours of the produce, order as many as you can muster then tuck in with a good bottle of natural wine on the side.
Home to some of the best pasta in Greater Manchester, you do have to schlep all the way out to Denton for it – but if incredible Italian food is part of your partner’s love language then trust us, it’ll be worth it.
By day, Ornella’s is very much a tiny deli cafe with room for just 12 diners at once. By night, the combination of the small space, low lighting and mouthwatering dishes make it a pasta lover’s paradise.
Dish-wise, think plump lobster ravioli, butter-drenched crispy sage and hazelnut spinach ricotta ravioli, and carbonara bucatini liberally doused in pepper and egg yolk, with crisp flecks of guanciale on top – all freshly made on-site by hand that day.
Opened by the team behind the Michelin-recommended Corvena in Chester just before Christmas, it boasts a stunning wine list (the name nods to the importance of weather in creating incredible wines) as well as some reportedly ‘genius’ dishes on its menu.
Serving a mixture of small and large plates, it also has one of the best panoramic views of the city skyline – looking down across Manchester from its perch on Blackfriars.
It feels like this Spinningfields rooftop restaurant needs no introduction at this point, but we’re going to do it anyway.
A glamourous restaurant and bar with a huge, heated outdoor terrace, it sits right at the top of the No.1 Spinningfields building overlooking the swanky glass towers of the business district from its position on high.
Long favoured for date night thanks to its breathtaking views of the skyline, its menu is not to be sniffed at either with a selection of delicious modern British dishes on offer.
Part of Gary Usher’s Elite Bistros group, this charming neighbourhood eatery in Didsbury Village is a wonderful spot for a romantic date.
The custard tart here is legendary, with an unctuous wobble that defies you to dare leave without ordering a slice.
Known for taking bistro classics and executing them to an exceptionally high standard, at Hispi you can expect a relaxed dining experience erring on the casual side.
Another laid-back eatery with a casual setting, Evelyn’s offers a mixed menu of small plates that can be ordered to share or larger ones to enjoy alone.
A popular cafe by day, at night it comes alive in a whole new way – lit up romantically with plants trailing down from hangers above your head.
Evelyn’s also boasts a ‘secret’ bar below, The Daisy, where you can sneak off with your date afterward to enjoy a few cocktails (or wines) in a romantic setting.
El Gato Negro
This AA Rosette and Michelin-recommended restaurant on King Street is a fail-safe date option in our (humble) opinion.
Serving up a mix of tapas dishes split into sections like fish and shellfish, meat, charcuterie, vegetables and para picar, tuck into the likes of Catalan bread, Padron peppers, salt cod croquettas and Morcilla scotch eggs.
Alongside a great wine and cocktail list, El Gato is also known for its sherry and vermouth selection – and both make a great complement to this style of dining.
For an ultra-romantic twist, if you love the idea of having a bit of theatre whilst you eat you can opt to sit at the chef’s table which faces directly into the kitchen.
If you ask us, romance doesn’t have to be all white tablecloths and rose petals – sometimes it’s more fun to get stuck in and share a curry with your loved one.
Since it opened in Manchester with queues out the door, Dishoom has remained one of the city’s most popular curry houses whilst maintaining an elusive, sultry feel – thanks, in part, to its setting within the city’s stunning former Masonic Hall.
Nestle up in one of its many beautiful corners on Valentine’s Day, with walk-ins always welcome.