Over in Ancoats, there’s a charming little chocolate shop and cafe serving up homemade lollipops, outrageously indulgent drinks and delectable cakes in all shapes and sizes.
Called Cocoa Cabana, it has been a fixture in the trendy suburb since 2019, having already established itself down on West Didsbury’s Burton Road.
Still, whilst Manc locals and tourists alike know all about its viral Augustus Gloop hot chocolates far less are privy to the details of its hidden tapas menu – and that is a crying shame.
Served at the Ancoats site every Friday and Saturday night, the hidden Spanish menu on offer here is the brainchild of talented chef José Núñez.
Núñez launched his pop-up tapas restaurant Maricarmen inside the Ancoats cafe in May and is using its kitchen on Friday and Saturday evenings to cook up all manner of delicious morsels.
Ranging from blackened and blistered Padron peppers to patatas bravas, Iberico meat and tortilla, fans of authentic tapas are well catered to here – as are foodies looking for more out-there dishes.
The menu also puts a twist on some classic European favourites, meaning you’ll also find the likes of truffled lasagne, plump garlic prawns drenched in olive oil with garlic and dried chillies, and cheese foam-topped potatoes on offer.
Add in quails egg-topped croquettes filled with chistorra, the best Iberico pork cuts products, crunchy lasagne with boletus, and lagarto with cassava truffled puree, and it’s fair to say that this pop-up has to be one of Ancoats’ best kept secrets.
Plates are washed down with beautiful Spanish wines that have been painstakingly sourced by the team, with a variety of different Spanish cocktails also on offer.
Promising to deliver an ‘unforgettable culinary experience’ in the city, Maricarmen ’s chef José Núñez told The Manc: “We are thrilled to bring an innovative twist on traditional Spanish wine and tapas experience to the wonderful city of Manchester.
The very special homecoming show will be New Order‘s first full headline performance in the city since 2021.
The group are widely accepted to be one of the most influential bands of all time and this year celebrated 40 years of their hit Blue Monday.
They were founded in 1980 by vocalist and guitarist Bernard Sumner, bassist Peter Hook and drummer Stephen Morris, who had all been together in Joy Division, which disbanded after the suicide of lead singer Ian Curtis.
This year, the band announced reissued editions of their classic compilation ‘Substance 1987’, the band’s biggest-selling album to date.
They also headlined Barcelona’s Primavera Sound before they commenced their UK and European tour this autumn.
New Order will be supported by Johnny Marr, good friend of the band and legendary guitarist of The Smiths.
Marr and Sumner previously worked on synth-dance act Electronic together, and released three albums.
Johnny Marr announced a new album earlier this year – ‘Spirit Power: The Best of Johnny Marr’ will celebrate the first ten years of his solo career, featuring songs from across his four solo albums.
Fans can expect to hear Johnny’s greatest hits alongside the brand new track ‘The Answer’ as he takes to the stage at Wythenshawe Park next August.
Also supporting New Order at Wythenshawe Park will be adopted Manc Roisin Murphy, known in the 1990s as one half of pop duo Moloko.
The Irish singer and songwriter recently released her universally acclaimed sixth studio album, Hit Parade.
Presale tickets will go on sale from Monday 4 December at 10am, while general sale tickets go on sale on Tuesday 5 December at 10am, and you can grab yours here.
Manchester secures £5.2m funding to build ‘supported accommodation’ for rough sleepers
Manchester has secured a whopping £5.2 million in funding to build new ‘supported accommodation’ designed to house rough sleepers.
After an application submitted to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities’ Single Homelessness Accommodation Programme (SHAP) has been approved this week, Manchester City Council says it’s eager to help the former homeless “rebuild their lives”.
This means that, by working in partnership with housing and support providers Humankind, Jigsaw, and Great Places, the Council will oversee the creation of 42 units of supported housing across three different schemes.
The schemes are for single people with a history of rough sleeping and longer-term support needs.
According to the Council, these people will stay in this accommodation and receive personalised support until they are ready to “take the next step to independent living”.
This new £5.2 million funding allocation from the Government covers both the cost of creating the accommodation – which must be completed by March 2025 at the latest – and revenue funding to help run it for its first three years of opening.
“We are working with a range of partners to tackle the homelessness challenge on all fronts, from prevention in the first place to helping people into permanent, settled homes,” explained Cllr Joanna Midgley, who is the Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council.
“Securing this £5.2m funding for the city will help us create much-needed extra accommodation for those being helped off the streets who need significant long-term support before they are ready to live independently.
“It’s only part of a wider response but it will be a welcome addition to the accommodation and support available.”
The news of the successful application comes after the Council published its plan to get rough sleepers off the streets of Manchester and into temporary accommodation this winter back in early November.