Manchester restaurant and food hall Hello Oriental has introduced a new dessert dish to its menu this month, and it’s been steadily dividing opinions since.
Comprised of a large bowl of salt and pepper chips, topped with piped-on vanilla ice cream, crispy onions and multicoloured party sprinkles, it takes inspiration from a cult McDonald’s trend that sees customers dip fries into their McFlurries or milkshakes.
Yes, that is (apparently) a real thing that people enjoy, so much so that McDonald’s even spoofed its customers with an April Fool’s advert in 2019 promising the introduction of a new series of banana, chocolate and strawberry ‘milkshake dips’.
Now, the bizarre fast food craze has taken an even stranger turn as Hello Oriental co-owners Ricky Yip and Azim Kourah introduce their own Eastern-inspired twist at their Oxford Road side.
Priced at £6.95 a tub, owners said that staff were initially divided over the concept but came soon round when they had tried it for themselves.
Now, it appears that the salty-sweet fast food treat is taking Manchester by storm with people flocking down to Hello Oriental to get their hands on a tub.
It’s not the first time that the food hall has divided opinions with its desserts. Earlier this summer, operators started mixing up ice cream made from durian, widely known as the world’s stinkiest fruit.
Famous for having a truly terrible smell that’s been unfavourably compared to cat p*ss, it’s so pungent that it’s actually been made illegal to eat it on the subway in Singapore.
Served in cute little bear and taiyaki fish-shaped cones, alongside typical soft serve flavours like ube (purple yam), pandan leaf, charcoal, mango and vanilla, on weekends you will also find a limited amount of durian ice cream here.
Managing to be sweet, creamy and savoury all at once, some say it tastes like “diced garlic and caramel poured into whipped cream”.
Others have referred to “subtle hints of chives mixed with powdered sugar”.
Multi-storey ‘super-venue’ Hello Oriental was built beneath Symphony Park at the new Circle Square development just off Oxford Road in February this year.
Inspired by dining destinations like Bang Bang Oriental in London and 1800 in Miami, at its heart sits a vast market hall with a fast-paced open kitchen, UK-first supermarket and Hello Bakery.
Feature image – The Manc Eats
‘A step too far’: Manchester clothing brand accuses Primark of ripping off its designs
A Manchester clothing brand has accused Primark of ripping off its designs, taking to social media to air its frustration after the high street shop released a copycat hoodie.
In a now-deleted Instagram video, local clothing retailer Hikerdelic compared a Primark ‘Explore Nature’ kid’s hoodie to one of its original designs and then highlighted how both the logos and overall aesthetic are nearly identical.
Hikerdelic’s logo features its brand name set into a grassy hill, below a pink and yellow sun with rays stretching outwards.
Primark’s design also features wording set into a grassy hill below a beaming sun, albeit this time the message reads ‘Explore Nature’ and the colour scheme is ever so slightly different using purple and coral instead of pink and yellow.
Hikerdelic was first founded by Proper Magazine’s Mark Smith and Neil Summers in Stockport five years ago, and the logo in question is of sentimental value – being the first that the team ever designed in partnership with artist Daren Newman.
Taking to Instagram to vent over the similarities, the caption underneath the Ancoats-based brand’s video read: “We’ve been sitting on this for a while. From time to time we find stuff out there similar to ours, but usually it’s just a case of people being influenced by similar things. It’s hard to be 100% original.
“This though, from a corporate behemoth we’re all familiar with, is a step too far, in our opinion. We’d be tempted to turn the other cheek and get on with doing our thing normally.
“Sometimes though, when someone kicks sand in your face you’ve got to let them know it’s not really on. At the end of the day it’s a business that makes hundreds of millions a year in clear profit. They don’t need to step on toes.”
The post continued: “This was the first logo we worked with @daren_newman on, and although we’ve got plenty more in our armoury, it’s the one that we began with. It’s not just us who are affected but talented independent illustrators too.”
“We all know everything new is inspired by something that has gone before and it can be difficult to stay original, however it’s clear to see this is something different to that and the response on our Instagram has backed that up.”
Feature image – Hikerdelic
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