A new Mediterranean and Middle Eastern vegan kitchen is opening above Stockport boozer Crown and Conspirator in Bramhall this month.
Brought to the area by vegan chef James Laving, the new venture will be called OTTO Vegan Empire – a nod to James’s role in former pop-up The Ottö-Men, the mezze street food favourite seen at the likes of Grub, Manchester International Festival’s festival hub and, most recently, Stretford Food Hall.
Dishes are all inspired by James’s travels through the Meditteranean and the Middle East, with some recipes – he confesses – having been ‘mithered’ directly from local elders he’s hassled along the way.
The concept has been created in collaboration with Cheshire Pub Co., and will be ‘the first of many sites’, said Managing Director Matt Parker, with the pub group seeking to expand the new Otto concept across the North West over the next few years.
In a concerted move away from the vegan junk food trend popular in Manchester, dishes will instead take inspiration from the Ottoman Empire and celebrate salads, rice, legumes and grains alongside Arabic breads like Khbouz and Manakish, reports the Manchester Evening News.
Dishes will span long-standing favourites like the Otto mezze with Khobez bread and the kitchen’s famous five falafel, alongside the likes of Adriatic-style tomato stew, ‘Sexy Pie’ – baklava pastry stuffed with eight roasted, confit vegetables and super grains – and Otto Veggie Kofta.
Elsewhere, diners will find’ black and wada Hummus’ – a Lebanese variation with toasted black sesame and black garlic, topped with wada batter crunchies and coriander – and a specially-chosen selection of vegan wines.
In a Facebook post announcing the move, chef James said: “Our Otto menu showcases a groovy and modern take on the traditional.
“I’ve lost count of how many patient elders I have mithered for their homegrown recipes during my travels through the streets and homes of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern villages.
“Otto will offer a cornucopia of flavour, texture and good times to the village of Bramhall. Sustainable, seasonable and locally sourced will be at the heart of everything we do.”
Due to open at the pub from Wednesday 27 April, to find out more and book check out OTTO Vegan Empire’s Instagram here and visit the pub’s website here.
A look at the plans to turn historic Ancoats mill with rich musical heritage into new apartment complex
Hodder + Partners have just revealed new CGIs and a more detailed look at the plans for their redevelopment of the longstanding Brunswick Mill in Ancoats which is set to become a brand-new apartment complex.
The proposals to turn the once creative space with decades of musical heritage into a new residential site were revealed back in 2021 and approved within just a few months, despite having been met with plenty of resistance given its history and cultural significance.
Nevertheless, Northern company Big Red Construction recently kicked off the £50+ million renovation on behalf of developer Arrowsmith Investments and the apartments are projected to be finished in 2026.
With that in mind, the architectural designers Hodder have just released a new look at what Brunswick Mill is set to look like once completed:
Set to transform the historic industrial mill-turned-creative space and music studios on the edge of New Islington into 153 new apartments, ranging from one, two and three-bedroom residences, the redevelopment will be spread across two phases.
In line with designs by Hodder + Partners, the initial phase involves converting the existing mill building and the construction of new four and seven-storey elements to accommodate the remaining 127 homes on the Bradford Road plot in Ancoats.
Big Red Construction, who are also working on the Peelers Yard building for CERT Property and Myprotein founder Oliver Cookson, are expected to complete phase one by the first quarter of 2026.
Here’s another look at what living space people are already buying up:
Along with Hodder + Partners as architects, the project team also consists of HW Consultancy who are covering structural aspects, Manchester firm Clancy for mechanical and electrical considerations, as well as AM Pyro as fire engineers.
With property company Orlando Reid serving as estate agents for the project, 42 out of the 153 apartments have already been sold off-plan, with managing director Baljit Arora describing it as “an exciting period for all parties involved and for the city of Manchester”.
This is just the latest chapter in the continued regeneration of the Ancoats and the New Islington areas, which remain two of the most heavily re-developed areas in the city centre and Greater Manchester as a whole. You can see other hot properties in and around the region HERE.