A small family-run Vietnamese restaurant in Ancoats has hit out at ‘blue tick’ influencers and others after being inundated with requests for free food in exchange for ‘exposure’.
The owners of Manchester restaurant Viet Shack shared an Instagram post where they publicly blasted ‘full & semi blue IG ticks, influencers, public figures and foodies’ for haranguing them and claimed they receive over 50 such messages a week.
The post then went on to call out an especially offensive message from a former Love Islander, who allegedly sent them ‘a follow up with an ☺️ emoji to remind us to re-read the previous DM stating that you came in 8th place’.
Owners barely pulled any punches as they wrote: “Bro, you came in on 11th and even Boohoo blocked yo ass for asking for free skinny jeans + velvet boxers. If that’s you, then we suggest to STOP READING RIGHT NOW!”
They did, however, blur out the blagger’s Instagram handle – but warned they wouldn’t be so kind next time.
The post continued: “Here it goes… From what we see, we definitely both do have some things in common. All that Gucci, LV & Prada stock you flex on your page, & some of our ingredients are definitely all from the Vietnamese market, but thats as much in common as we have!
“Please stop asking for “COLLABORATIONS” which was a word widely used by world saving, bare foot or flip flop wearing artists + philanthropists. But is now sadly a synonym used for GIVE ME FREE STUFF via social media.
“We are a small family business, that’s just spent most our savings this year on a new toilet that flushes properly, new chairs + marble tables.
“The old IKEA ones dissolved almost as fast as Lindsay Lohan’s music career (yes, she released an album.. and yes, 1 track was actually decent, and yes that track is on our playlist… and so what? she was good in Mean Girls, and we all know y’all watched it recently on Netflix.)
“In conclusion, STOP ASKING FOR FREE SH*T and just come help and support ya locals. Can’t you see there’s a crisis and there’s favourite spots closing down due to financial deficiencies?
“The next time anyone sends us one of these requests, we shall not be using the blurring tool so expertly.
“Ps, no offence to all other blue ticks, influencers, public figures, foodies or other Islanders that’s genuinely here just to eat and enjoy Lindsays Lohan’s music. We love you and promise to start buying really good toilet roll soon if we make enough money, instead of the extra vegan toilet rolls that may make you flinch a bit mid wipe.
“PPS, no doubt some are gonna come at us heated and offended…. In our defence, on paragraph 2 – we did say STOP READING NOW!”
Viet Shack’s fans were quick to pile on in the comments, with one person writing: “Well said, and glad more independents are calling this behaviour out! Piggy backing on someone else’s hard graft is just rude and lazy IMHO … I’m not an influencer, just an ordinary person who enjoys good food and spreads the word like normal folk do. See you soon.”
Another person said: “This is up there with one of the best posts I’ve seen on Instagram! It’s so cringy watching these people expect free products, and more insulting to the rest of us that they honestly think we believe they ‘use’ and ‘love’ these products and brands! Well done for calling this out! Hopefully more will follow.”
A third added: “Amazing! I’m gonna eat here more just because of this post! … and the duck fries! Xx”
Feature image – Viet Shack
A restaurant in Ancoats is serving up plates of crispy fried squirrel
A Manchester restaurant is serving up plates of crispy fried squirrel – and their customers absolutely love it.
Taking game dishes to a whole other level, the wild crispy buttermilk fried squirrel at Ancoats restaurant Street Urchin comes served atop a creamy pulled ham hock cassoulet, with hazelnut bread croutons and nettle pesto and costs £22.50.
Sourced from their game supplier in Cumbria, it might sound nutty but owner Rachel Choudhary told The Manc that the dish has proven incredibly popular – and that the team has been ‘really surprised’ at how much of a hit it has become with customers since adding it to the menu.
She said: “We were looking for something new for the game options on the menu. Kev was speaking to our game supplier and randomly asked if he had any grey squirrels. Happily, he did.
“The whole team tried the dish the day it went on and the majority thought it was really good.
“We weren’t sure if it would sell, but have been really surprised. So many people have tried it and given good feedback. We’ve recommended that they eat it like chicken wings and pick it up, that way you get most of the meat.
“I’d never tried squirrel before and I absolutely loved it, it has great flavour, rich buttery texture, and it’s wild, free-range meat.”
The gray squirrel currently has an estimated population of 2.5 million in the UK according to the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust and is considered a good sustainable alternative to factory-farmed meat.
It is legal to control grey squirrels by shooting or trapping them in the UK in a humane manner and even helps protect the UK’s endangered native red squirrel population.
Whilst some might find the idea of eating squirrels a tad unappealing, many chefs argue it is better to eat them when culling as it means the meat does not go to waste.
English market diner Street Urchin was first opened on Great Ancoats Street in 2019 by husband and wife team Rachel and Kevin Choudary.
Prior to opening in town, the couple ran The Victoria in Altrincham for eight years before deciding that it was time to move on.
Their Ancoats market diner has made its name on being one of the few city centre restaurants specialising in fresh fish, with everything from clams and mackerel to cured chalk stream trout, king scallops, and whole grilled red gurnard regularly available on the menu.