A top Manchester chef has just launched a new ‘affordable’ menu, designed to make his restaurant’s tasting dishes more accessible to the wider public during the week.
Adam Reid, the esteemed head chef behind Michelin-recommended restaurant The French at The Midland has put together the new £75 per head menu as a more affordable alternative to his Signature tasting menu, which is nearly double the price.
The new £75 ‘Initials’ menu does not include drinks but diners can opt to pay for a selection of paired drinks on top – priced at £40 for what’s described as a ‘Tipsy’ pairing, or £30 for a selection of matched non-alcoholic soft drinks.
By comparison, the Signature tasting menu typically costs £140 each on Saturdays and an extra £85 for an accompanying wine pairing, although those dining from Wednesday to Friday are able to enjoy the same menu for a slightly lower price.
Dishes available to order from the new menu will include barbecued salt marsh lamb from the Rhug Estate with Wirral courgette and gravy, Peter’s courgette blossom with eel and tongue, and baked English custard with mint and Cheshire strawberry.
The idea behind this, he has said, is to give people a taste of The French without the late night.
He said: “I appreciate that not everyone wants to experience a full tasting menu midweek, this new special menu has been created to cater for those who still want a taste of The French but don’t want a late night!”
The Initials menu will be available throughout July and August, with the restaurant’s usual Signature menu running alongside.
A longstanding face of The French, Reid took over following the departure of L’Enclume chef Simon Rogan and became chef patron in 2016.
In the past six years, he has won a number of AA Rosettes for the restaurant but consistently missed out on a Michelin star to the disappointment of many.
With new pastures on the horizon, he has also recently been tapped to open a butty shop at New Century later this summer – taking it back to childhood with sides like potato salad and pickled eggs.
With a sandwich for every part of the day, the two-time Great British Menu winner will focus on classic Northern flavours built on memories of childhood visits to the bakery when his butty shop opens in the new food hall at NOMA later this year.
Feature image – The French
Sir David Jason set for TV return in Only Fools and Horses documentary Christmas special
In a surprise bit of festive news, the only and only Sir David Jason is returning for an Only Fools and Horses Christmas special this December. Lovely jubbly!
The best-loved and most-watched British comedy of all time will be back on our screens in documentary form this festive season, with Del Boy himself David Jason revisiting the iconic comedy character after 20 years he last played him on screen.
While the legendary sitcom was broadcast on BBC back in the day, the highly-anticipated Only Fools doc will be airing on Channel 5 right before Christmas as a special one-off programme.
Looking back on the show’s incredible run on UK screens over seven series and the several ‘Christmas Cracker’ specials, specifically, the latest Only Fools and Horses documentary will see Jason and a number of other guests appearing to chat about the legendary show.
While it’s still unclear how many of the original cast will be appearing, Jason’s on-screen wife Tessa Peake-Jones (Raquel) is confirmed to be appearing along with other special guests including newscaster Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Bendiorm‘s Sherrie Hewson.
Sadly, a full theatrical reunion just isn’t on the cards following the deaths of Roger Lloyd Pack (Trigger), Kenneth MacDonald (Mike the Landlord) and Buster Merryfield (Uncle Albert) in the 30 years since the show ended its run.
Only Fools writer John Sullivan also sadly passed away aged 64 in 2011 and fellow co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, a.k.a. Rodney Trotter, told Metro: “We can’t. John is no longer with us. John was the driving force of the show and we have also lost quite a few cast members now.
“I don’t think I could do it without them and I certainly couldn’t do it without John. At the risk of depressing everyone, I think the last two times I’ve seen David has been at funerals.”
Simply entitled, ‘The Story Of Only Fools And Horses At Christmas’, the 90-minute special is yet to have its broadcast date fully confirmed but you best keep your eyes peeled on the TV guide — we’ll let you know as soon we do.
Jason, 81, has only just recovered from hip surgery earlier this year, so it’ll be nice to see his familiar grin back on our screens.
Right, we’re off to binge a whole series on UK Gold.
Habas restaurant in Manchester announces shock closure – with huge closing-down discount
Habas, the Middle Eastern restaurant launched by the team behind El Gato Negro, has announced its shock closure.
The subterranean restaurant will be going out with a bang though, promising one last knees-up with a big discount.
Habas will be doing 25% off its entire food and drink menu this New Year’s Eve so that fans of the eatery can raise a glass to the Manchester restaurant.
They’re also hoping that Mancs will raise a glass to new beginnings, teasing a brand new concept.
Habas is located at Brown Street in Manchester city centre and has been serving up its Middle Eastern menu since 2021.
It comes from Mills Hill Developments Limited, the company also responsible for El Gato Negro and Canto, fronted by celebrated chef Simon Shaw.
Habas has stressed that its closure ‘is not forever’ as it announces details of its New Year’s Eve closing down party.
You can ring in the new year with a selection of mezze dishes, sharing platters and small plates, feasting on chicken tagine and traditional tzatziki, all 25% off on Sunday 31 December.
Drinks, too, like the cranberry elderflower martini, blackberry ginger smash and clementine daquiri will be with 25% off.
Simon Shaw, Chef Parton at Mills Hill Developments Limited, said: “As of January 2024, we have made the decision to close the doors of Habas Bar & Restaurant, however we are thrilled to announce that our Brown Street venue has an exciting new concept on the way.
“Throughout December, Habas, will continue serving up the city’s best middle-eastern cuisine, so make sure you pop in and see us. AND on New Year’s Eve, Habas, will be hosting an unforgettable celebration with 25% off food and drinks. We want to rejoice with all of our customers, with one final hurrah!
“We would like to thank all of our guests and reassure Habas fans that this is not the end of Habas Bar & Restaurant forever, simply a farewell from Brown Street for now.
“We look forward to welcoming you to our new exciting concept in Q1 of 2024.”