Arlo’s Insta bio is quite upfront: “coffee deli wine.” Three of the few words we have underlined in our well-thumbed traveller’s phrasebook, wherever we’re headed. In this case, it’s the Northern Quarter, so the phrasebook is not much use, but the words are manna from heaven.
Let’s begin at the beginning, with the caffeine, which starts at a very civilised 10am. Using as its base the house espresso made by North London-based small batch producer Dead Good Coffee, Arlo’s can do you a nice and not too expensive cortado, macchiato and the usual cappuccinos and wotnot. There are also the likes of matcha latte and teas, from black peach to Earl Grey. It would be rude not to check out the counter for today’s pastries and patisserie selection, custom made from scratch exclusively for Arlo’s by their own sister bakery Gooey nearby. Available Wednesday to Sunday only, these sweet treats are in short supply – when they’re gone, they’re gone. They’re also changed up every few weeks, so don’t get too attached to that layered mint and pistachio chocolate cake or the super-shiny refined Black Forest gateau… Perfect, we’d say with a brunch cocktail: espresso martini keeps up the coffee shop front or try the mimosa of the week (see board). Also regularly changing are the bagel specials, small plates and deli bits, all in limited supplies to keep an eye on quality. Part of the idea of Arlo’s is to showcase top-notch local produce and work with some of the best and most interesting suppliers in Manchester and beyond. Think fine baked goods from 3 Hands Deli, sourdough from Holy Grain, high-welfare charcuterie from Northern Cure, and speciality cheese and dairy, with a focus on local and British producers, from The Crafty Cheese Man. Sliding into wine bar mode, and a “small but mighty selection” of classic cocktails is at your disposal, along with natural wines from suppliers including Manchester’s It’s Alive.
So where is it? Squeezed between The Corner Boy and Wilson’s Social, you’ll spy a doorway. “Look for the pendant lighting and the glowing Arlo’s neon through our windows.”
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