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Guide

Sophisticated dining in Manchester City Centre

Manchester Central

Atmospheric lighting, great service and sophisticated food that will blow your little socks off. These restaurants sure know how to impress. We’re not messing around here, we’re talking fine dining, small plates and Masterchef winners.

New opening Another Hand, with chef imports from The Edinburgh Castle and Hispi Bistro certainly impressed Manchester Confidential’s reviewer when he visited. While you might recognise The French’s Chef Adam Reid from Great British Menu and Simon Wood of self-named Wood from Masterchef.

For modern-style French cooking and impeccable cocktails, try 10 Tib Lane and if steak is your love language, Hawksmoor might just be the way to your heart.

Every restaurant on this list is hand-picked and loved by our editorial team living and working in Manchester, with many being recognised by national publications and food guides as some of the best in the country. Who can argue with that?

For 23 sophisticated dining spots in Manchester, you’re certainly in the right place.

  • Lamb rump with potato rosti and broad beans served at 10 Tib Lane, a French restaurant in Manchester city centre.
    Manchester City Centre

    10 Tib Lane

    Restaurant - French

    10 Tib Lane is one of the brave new openings of summer 2021; a time when securing staff and supplies, never mind diners, is an ongoing challenge for everyone. 

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  • A chef puts the finishing touches to a dish at French restaurant 63 Degrees in Manchester's NQ.
    Northern Quarter

    63 Degrees

    Restaurant - French

    Ran by husband and wife team Eric and Florence Moreau, 63 Degrees is a classic chef-proprieteur French restaurant with roots in the refined cuisine of their home city of Paris.

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  • Modern British fine dining at Adam Reid at The French, the restaurant in the Midland Hotel, Manchester
    Manchester City Centre

    Adam Reid at The French

    Restaurant - Modern British

    Culinary rock and roll from Simon Rogan’s protege, Adam Reid. Enjoy fine-dining in Grade II Listed Victorian surrounds – with a side order of Mancunian attitude.

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  • Dish from Another Hand, Manchester
    Manchester City Centre

    Another Hand

    Restaurant - British

    From the team that brought you 3 Hands Deli, Another Hand opened in February 2022 in the unit just next door. With a sleek new look, the casual dining restaurant brings brunch, lunch and a relaxed dining experience to Deansgate Mews, Manchester’s newest hotspot.

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  • Asha's Indian Restaurant, Manchester
    Manchester City Centre

    Asha’s

    Restaurant - Indian subcontinent

    Modern Indian restaurants come with their own USPs such as street food, home cooking and regionally-specific cuisine. Asha’s, near the library end of Peter Street, has decided to go high-end with proper posh Rogan Josh nosh.

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  • Oysters from Climat, Manchester.
    Book Now Manchester City Centre

    Climat

    Restaurant - Modern British

    On the rooftop of Blackfriars House, Climat is a simply exceptional dining experience owned and operated by the team behind Covino in Chester, who have established a reputation as a wine-led restaurant with a focus on changing menus and a passion for wine.

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  • Ancoats

    Erst

    Restaurant - British

    “Yet more small plates in Ancoats?” we hear you cry. Well yes, but trust us, Erst is worth your attention. This is a place for serious foodies so don’t come looking for mac n cheese balls. Plenty of other places can satisfy that filthy craving for you.

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  • Steak at Gaucho
    Book Now Manchester City Centre

    Gaucho Manchester

    Restaurant - South American

    For many people, Argentinian restaurant Gaucho Manchester is the destination in the city for very good steak paired with very good wine. Housed in a converted Methodist church on Deansgate, with an open kitchen, and the original church organ still in-situ, it’s also known as one of Manchester’s best-looking spaces for dining.

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  • Spinningfields

    Hawksmoor

    Restaurant - British

    The first Hawksmoor steakhouse outside of London opened on Deansgate in 2015 and is a confident affair. Well sourced steak and attention to detail have created a place like no other.

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  • One of the fine-dining dishes served at James Martin in Manchester city centre.
    Book Now Manchester City Centre

    James Martin

    Restaurant - British

    A fine-dining restaurant inside a casino with a celeb chef name above the door? Alarm bells. Yes, James Martin has his name across the massive billboard outside, but this is not an ostentatious venue.

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  • Kala Bistro Cod Loin
    Manchester City Centre

    Kala Bistro

    Restaurant - Modern British

    Kala describes itself as a humble bistro but humility is not usually a word associated with Gary Usher, the chef behind the Elite Bistros group. Having said that, perhaps the social media motormouth has every reason to feel pretty darn perky. Some very well-regarded chefs have only good things to say about him, such as former boss, Angela Hartnett, and the supposed ‘humble bistro food’ at Kala is elegant and impressive. It’s more fine dining than simple fodder, that’s for sure.

    The dishes sound simple but they have a flair and a verve that can’t fail to delight. Expect starters such as baked goat’s cheese with purple carrots and smoked garlic or crispy pig’s head croquette. Typical mains range from miso glazed squash to pan-roasted cod with curry and almond sauce but the rightly famous featherblade of beef is a mainstay.

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  • Book Now Manchester City Centre

    Malmaison Deansgate Bar & Grill

    Restaurant

    Malmaison Deansgate Bar & Grill is a confident operation with prime grass-fed British beef and popular classics. The menu veers towards traditional rather than adventurous but great wines and well-aged, matured steaks mean that doesn’t matter. When you’re serving juicy marbled rib eye that everyone loves, what is there to complain about?

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  • A seafood dish from Mana, Manchester.
    Ancoats

    Mana

    Restaurant - Modern British

    Michelin-starred restaurant Mana is the brainchild of chef patron Simon Martin who mastered his trade at the renowned Noma in Copenhagen. In his first few years at Mana, Martin has succeeded in carving his own path – one which confuses and delights people in equal measure.

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  • Manchester City Centre

    Mount Street Dining Room & Bar

    Restaurant - Modern British

    Set inside Manchester’s iconic Midland Hotel, Mount Street Dining Room & Bar is a chic space with an all day menu that offers a modern take on British classics using top-notch, locally sourced, fresh seasonal ingredients.

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  • One of the dishes served at MUSU in Manchester
    Book Now Spinningfields

    MUSU

    Restaurant - Japanese

    The Japanese word MUSU translates as ‘infinite possibilities’ and while Chef Patron Michael Shaw’s quartet of menus may not be infinite they are certainly unique for Manchester at least. With a combination of Japanese and more locally-sourced ingredients, the guest is invited to choose the way they prefer to dine at MUSU.

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  • Pierogi dumpling from Platzki restaurant, Deansgate Manchester
    Manchester City Centre

    Platzki

    Restaurant - European

    Modern Polish cuisine is what’s on offer at Platzki, one of the first restaurants to open at Deansgate Mews back in 2018.

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  • Salford

    The River Restaurant

    Restaurant - Modern British

    The River Restaurant at The Lowry Hotel is Manchester’s classic fine dining restaurant. Huge names that have run the kitchen include Marco Pierre White, while diners have included Jose Mourinho and Kylie.

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  • Steak at San Carlo - one of the Hot 50 Restaurants in Manchester for March.
    Book Now Deansgate

    San Carlo Manchester

    Restaurant - Italian

    San Carlo is Manchester’s most famous and, some say, best Italian restaurant. Run by the Distefano family, it’s said to have one of the largest turnovers in the UK. It’s also the place to be papped and you’ll sometimes see a bank of photographers outside to prove the point.

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  • Dishes at The Sparrows, Manchester
    Book Now Green Quarter

    The Sparrows

    Restaurant - European

    Green Quarter start-up and Good Food Guide entry, The Sparrows (sometimes with an umlaut) serves up a variety of continental pasta and European origin dumplings, “made daily with love”. Spätzle, gnocchi, pierogi, pelmeni and more are on the menu here.

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  • A table set for dinner at Instagrammer's paradise Tattu restaurant in Manchester, Spinningfields
    Spinningfields

    Tattu Manchester

    Restaurant - Chinese

    Located in the heart of the Spinningfields business district, Tattu Manchester is an Instagrammer’s dream. Think penumbral lighting, body art-inspired cocktails and a full-size cherry blossom tree with hand-sewn silk petals. You’d be forgiven for expecting such opulent surroundings to outshine the food. Not so.

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  • Crab, mussel and caviar fishcakes at TNQ.
    Northern Quarter

    TNQ

    Restaurant - Modern British

    This unassuming, independent restaurant overlooking the historic Smithfield Fish Market is a stalwart of the Northern Quarter’s dining scene. Co-owner and chef Anthony Fielden has been cooking up a storm at TNQ since 2004, winning various awards and accolades along the way. 

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  • Venison steak at Wood Manchester.
    Manchester City Centre

    Wood

    Restaurant - Modern British

    The eponymous restaurant of Simon Wood, MasterChef winner and local lad from Oldham, is an accomplished affair. The décor – muted natural tones in a glass-clad new build – places the focus of any meal on the fine, Italianesque (yet often locally sourced) food and wine on offer.

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