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Guide

The coolest places to eat in Manchester

1 year ago

Looking for bare bricks, parquet wood flooring, dangly filament light bulbs, Scandi chairs, clipboard menus, natural wine, staff in trainers, chefs in flatcaps… you get the point.

Here we’ve collected together some of the most interesting and hip places to eat in Manchester, from laid-back suburban bistros to a Northern Quarter ramen bar.

  • Inside Albert's Schloss, the Bavarian-inspired cook haus and bier palace in Manchester city centre.
    Manchester City Centre

    Albert’s Schloss

    Restaurant - European

    Albert’s Schloss is a Bavarian-inspired fun palace of extraordinary dimensions and clever design. Behind the glistening tiles of the former Manchester and Salford Wesleyan Mission building (est in 1910) you’ll discover a vast bar, real fires, perfectly preserved original plaster, and a wall stuffed generously with flowers by floral artists’ Frog. You’ll also find a stage, DJ booth and network of beer pipes and tanks serving unpasturised Pilsner Urquell to hordes of adoring punters.

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  • Book Now 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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  • Baratxuri in Ramsbottom pays homage to the pintxos bars of the Basque region
    Ramsbottom

    Baratxuri

    Restaurant - Spanish

    Basque enclave Baratxuri is the second Ramsbottom-based bar and restaurant from Joe and Fiona Botham.

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  • Bundobust Manchester is best known for its vegetarian small plates and craft beers
    Book Now Manchester City Centre

    Bundobust Manchester

    Restaurant - Indian subcontinent

    Bundobust is a huge beer hall serving craft ales in the heart of Manchester’s Piccadilly Gardens. It also happened to win Restaurant of the Year at the 2017 Manchester Food and Drink Festival awards, thanks to its stellar menu of Indian small plates.

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  • Goosnargh duck at District, a new-wave Thai restaurant in Manchester city centre.
    Book Now Northern Quarter

    District

    Restaurant - Thai

    The ring road end of Oldham Street seems an odd location for a hyper-stylised nouveau-Asian restaurant where your only options are two budget-pushing tasting menus. But ‘odd’ is District all over – deliberately so, and with varying results.

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  • Ducie Street Warehouse Manchester
    Northern Quarter

    Ducie Street Warehouse

    Restaurant - Modern British

    Ducie Street Warehouse is all sorts of things, but one of those things is a restaurant. It’s an all-day affair with everything from classic brunches to late-night cocktails. On the menu you’ll find a good selection of small sharing dishes and large plates – it’s a sociable kind of place. And of course, you’ll also find Ducie Street Warehouse’s signature focaccia flatbreads.

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  • El Gato Negro, the much-praised Spanish restaurant on King Street, Manchester
    Manchester City Centre

    El Gato Negro Manchester

    Restaurant - Spanish

    El Gato Negro is an upmarket Manc-Spanish fusion restaurant that really, really works. Originally from Yorkshire, chef Simon Shaw has created an indulgent, three-storey church to his passion for the best in Spanish food and wine.

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  • The exterior of Hawksmoor Manchester on Deansgate - the first Hawksmoor to open outside of London
    Manchester City Centre

    Hawksmoor

    Restaurant - British

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

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  • Inside Hispi bistro in Didsbury - one of Confidential Guides' recommended Manchester restaurants.
    Book Now Didsbury

    Hispi

    Restaurant - European

    Hispi is, quite simply, a great bistro. Fifth in a growing chain of restaurants conceived by Gary Usher, the concept started with Sticky Walnut in Chester (see also Top 100), a neighbourhood operation which made its name off the back of great, simple food, quaffable wine served in beakers, and excellent quality produce. Expect chunky British dishes – such as chicken liver pate and braised featherblade – made with fresh ingredients and great results.

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  • A table laden with dishes from Mughli - one of the first Indian restaurants in Manchester to embrace street food.
    Rusholme

    Mughli

    Restaurant - Indian subcontinent

    Mughli is the contemporary, social media embracing, second generation Curry Mile restaurant that paved the way for the likes of Indian Tiffin Room, Amma’s Canteen and Dishoom.

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  • A dish served with a glass of wine at Oystercatcher - a seafood restaurant in Chorlton, Manchester.
    Book Now Chorlton

    Oystercatcher

    Restaurant - European

    “Doing lots of little things right” is a definition of perfection. And Oystercatcher – a simple seafood restaurant in Chorlton – is just that.
    The kitchen’s Inca grill is masterfully handled by co-owner Recep Canliisik, who churns out dishes such as char-grilled whole sea bream, and Tandoori-barbecued monkfish tail.

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  • Outside dining at Porta Altrincham - a tapas restaurant recommended by Confidential Guides
    Book Now Altrincham

    Porta Altrincham

    Restaurant - European

    Spanish small plates and a menu that really delivers. Porta Altrincham might be another tapas place – but this one is a smash hit serving excellent food and fine wines.

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  • Book Now Manchester City Centre

    The Refuge

    Restaurant - European

    Winning small plate fusion in an iconic and glamorous setting. Housed in Manchester’s iconic The Refuge Assurance Company dating back to 1858, this DJ-run restaurant and bar is large and sassy.

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  • Neapolitan-style pizzas being prepared at Rudy's Pizza in Ancoats, Manchester
    Book Now Ancoats

    Rudy’s Pizza Manchester Ancoats

    Restaurant - Italian

    Listed amongst the world’s best pizzerias in international pizza guide, Where To Eat Pizza, Rudy’s Pizza has grown from a pop-up project into a full blown word-of-mouth phenomenon.

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  • A dish of pasta with a glass of red wine at Sugo Pasta Kitchen Altrincham, a Confidential Guides recommended restaurant
    Book Now Altrincham

    Sugo Pasta Kitchen Altrincham

    Restaurant - Italian

    Another Altrincham success story, the Puglian-inspired Sugo Pasta Kitchen opened on Shaw Road – right by the transformative Market House – in 2015. Their simple and uncompromisingly authentic Southern Italian dishes soon won them fans, as good ole word-of-mouth momentum brought diners piling in from across the region. Accolades and glowing reviews soon followed, as did further restaurants.

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  • Tokyo Ramen, manchester
    Book Now Northern Quarter

    Tokyo Ramen

    Restaurant - Japanese

    Spartan and stripped back is the only description for Tokyo Ramen – and that’s both the menu and the restaurant itself. With barely enough space to swing a noodle, the place only accommodates 20 walk-ins. It’s not a sociable place, more a utilitarian slurping station.

    As it is all about the food, is it any good? In a word, yes. The selection of drinks is limited, even the word ‘selection’ seems like too generous a term and the menu is brief and to the point. It’s the ramen which are the one-pot wonders with Tokyo Ramen billing itself as ‘Manchester’s #1 ramen shop’. It’s all in the broth – in this case 10 hour chicken bone broth, or mushroom dashi in the vegan option – which lifts the food to Mt. Fuji-like heights.

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  • A colourful small plate served at Volta in Didsbury: a Confidential Guides' recommended restaurant
    Book Now Didsbury

    Volta

    Restaurant - European

    Volta is owned by Luke ‘Unabomber’ Cowdrey and Justin Crawford – the DJ-restauranteur duo behind Chorlton’s Electrik bar, the Electrik Chair club night, and Refuge by Volta in Manchester city centre’s Kimpton Clocktower Hotel. 

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  • Wooden beams and wooden tables inside Stockport fine-dining restaurant Where the Light Gets In
    Book Now Stockport

    Where the Light Gets In

    Restaurant - Modern British

    The UK’s most exciting ‘no menu’ restaurant. With no menu and esoteric wines, Where the Light Gets In doesn’t adhere to the typical fine-dining formula. But it’s been a success for Stockport, thanks to chef-patron Sam Buckley’s belief in doing things his own way.

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