That said, there’s plenty more to be talking about too as even more new openings land in the city and – who knows – Rayner could be visiting one of these next.
From indie bakehouse Batard, who have eyes from Chef Table on them as they open their new cafe at SEESAW this Wednesday, to Manchester brewers Track and their brand new taproom, we’ve some great spots for you to check out this week.
Keep reading to discover more.
A new Track Brewery taproom
Back Piccadilly has long been a spot filled with excellent local brewers. For those in the know, this also makes it a great place to head down and sample some of the freshest beer in the city given that many also have their own taprooms.
Already well populated with the likes of Cloudwater, Manchester Union, Alphabet, Squawk, Beer Nouveau, Wander Beyond, this weekend the trading estate will also see Track Brewery open the doors to its new and improved unit, no. 18 to the public from 12 pm on Friday.
Expect 23 taps pouring different creations, including the 3.8% Sonoma – one of the brewery’s signature session beers.
Find it at Unit 18, Piccadilly Trading Estate, Manchester M1 2NP. Track Brewery’s taproom opens Friday 1 October, 12 pm.
Indie bakehouse Batard opens at SEESAW
It’s an exciting moment for fans of Batard’s blackened bakes, as the indie bakehouse moves into a new permanent home on Princess Street. Taking over the cafe at SEESAW, co-founders Dorothy Jaffa and Lewis Loughman will be serving up hearty breakfast and lunch dishes using their own baked in-house breads.
Think porchetta and celeriac sandos, grilled cheese, and the return of their ‘proper’ steak bakes, plus breakfast babka, stout rarebit, and Batard’s signature take on the McMuffin.
Find it at 86 Princess St, Manchester M1 6NG. Batard is open for coffee and breakfast from 9 am pm, lunch is served from 12 – 3 pm.
Free oysters and gin martinis at this archway bar
Simon Martin, the chef behind Manchester’s only Michelin star restaurant Mana, has teamed up with distillers at Three Little Words’ Spirit of Manchester to make an oyster gin. All done in the name of sustainability, the gin has been distilled using oyster shells from Mana that would’ve otherwise gone in the bin.
To celebrate its launch, the Manchester Gin team has created two bespoke cocktails and they are giving away free oysters as a garnish – served either fried or fresh – at their archway bar and restaurant Three Little Words.
Choose from the mana Perfect Serve (£9), which pairs the Mother of Pearl Gin with lime, basil, and Franklin & Sons light tonic; or the Mother of Pearl Martini (£11), combining oyster gin with dry white vermouth, bergamot liqueur and lemon bitters.
Find it at Three Little Words, 12-13 Watson St, Manchester M3 4LP.
Manchester’s first dedicated açaí bar
A Brazilian dessert originating from Pará and Amazonas, açaí na tigela translates simply to ‘açaí in the bowl.’ Made of frozen acai palm fruit that is pureed and served as a smoothie, it’s become quite a trendy ‘health food’ breakfast option in recent years.
Whilst you can already find açaí bowls in Manchester, this new opening sounds set to become a go-to spot. Started by former pilot Connor and his partner Alisha, the pair discovered the treat whilst travelling and fell so in love they decided to create a business around it.
Eat your heart out Pret, because they also serve banana loaf, yoghurt and granola bowls and avocado toast.
Find it at the Arndale Market, 49 High Street Arndale, Manchester M4 3AH.
Feature image – Batard / Alex Proudfoot
This hidden Manchester pasta and dumplings restaurant has just made the Michelin Guide
Michelin has just added some new additions to its guide, and one of our favourite Manchester restaurants has finally made the cut.
Loved by locals for its continental pasta and dumplings, gorgeous European wine list and sake collection, The Sparrows in the Green Quarter is something of a hidden gem – tucked in a disused railway arch on Red Bank.
It received rave reviews from local and national critics alike when it first opened in 2019 in a tiny space with room for just 12 covers. Since then, it’s relocated to a bigger home and its following has grown significantly.
After spending years wowing foodies in the know, the restaurant has made it onto the radar of Michelin’s inspectors at last – and we have to say, the accolade is well deserved indeed.
Front of house is headed up by Polish-born Kasia Hitchcock with her chef partner Franco Concli at the helm in the kitchen. Plates celebrate Franco’s Tyrolean heritage, with their signature dish spätzle, a rustic fresh egg pasta from which the restaurant takes its name, sitting front and centre.
Traditionally made by scraping dough from the wooden board straight into a pot of boiling water, these irregular-shaped delights translate from Swabian-German to mean “little sparrows.”
Served in multiples ways, they can be enjoyed either savoury or sweet – mixed with braised onions into a creamy gruyere and Emmental cheese sauce, as is traditional, or transformed into a pudding with a touch of cinnamon, brown sugar and butter.
Joining the now seventeen Manchester restaurants to be featured in the prestigious guide, its description reads as follows: “Nestled under the railway arches in Manchester’s Green Quarter is a restaurant whose name is (almost) the English translation of the word ‘spätzle’ – which gives some clue as to the style of food on offer here.
“The dumplings and assorted pasta dishes are all made in-house and include excellent pierogi. The focus on Eastern Europe carries through to the wine list, which has a leaning towards Polish wines.”
A welcome new addition, if you haven’t yet visited then we recommend you book in swiftly. No doubt the news of its conclusion in the Michelin Guide will send reservations filling up pretty sharpish.
Feature image – Google Maps
New DNA evidence could clear ‘innocent’ man who spent 17 years in prison for Salford rape
A man who spent 17 years in prison for a rape he has continued to claim he did not commit has now been granted a fresh appeal after DNA was linked to an alternative suspect.
57-year-old Andrew Malkinson from Grimsby was convicted by a jury verdict of 10-2 of strangling and raping a woman in Little Hulton in Salford back in 2003, and was jailed for life following a trial at Manchester Crown Court in February 2004.
The victim – who had been walking home alone in the early hours of 19 July 2003 – was sexually assaulted after being throttled until the point of unconsciousness, and also suffered a broken neck and a fractured cheekbone during the attack.
There was no DNA or other forensic evidence linking Mr Malkinson to the crime at the time, and the prosecution case relied mainly on identification evidence from eyewitnesses.
This is why he has always maintained his innocence and insisted it was a case of mistaken identity.
Mr Malkinson had twice been refused an appeal in the past after applying for his case to be reviewed by the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) – which is the body responsible for investigating alleged miscarriages of justice – but after being released on license from prison back in 2020, scientific techniques have advanced, and this has potentially lead to some new evidence.
The legal team at the charity APPEAL was able to commission new DNA testing that revealed the presence of unknown male DNA in samples taken from the victim and her clothing, and this “breakthrough” has therefore cast doubt on Mr Malkinson’s conviction.
APPEAL Director Emily Bolton said “the battle for justice is not yet over”, adding that the CCRC “will now form its own view of the fresh evidence and we hope they will agree that Andy’s conviction cannot now be regarded as safe.”
Mr Malkinson says he “finally has the chance to prove his innocence”.
“I am innocent,” Mr Malkinson questioned in a statement provided by his legal representatives.
“Finally, I have the chance to prove it thanks to the perseverance of my legal team at APPEAL. I only have one life and so far 20 years of it has been stolen from me. Yesterday I turned 57 years old. How much longer will it take?”
As well as the case having being referred back to the CCRC this week, in light of new information, Greater Manchester Police (GMP) confirmed last month that it had arrested a 48-year-old man from Exeter on suspicion of rape, but he has since been released under investigation.
Addressing Mr Malkinson’s case, CCRC chairwoman Helen Pitcher said: “The new results raise concerns about the safety of these serious convictions.
“It is now for the Court of Appeal to decide whether they should be quashed.
“New evidence can come to light years after a conviction, and in the ever-changing world of forensic science, it is crucial an independent body can undertake these enquiries and send cases of concern back to court.
“Following Mr Malkinson’s application, we used our special powers and expertise to re-examine this case, instructing experts to undertake state-of-the-art DNA testing.”