Enjoying the best in authentic Italian food and wine just got even easier with Veeno’s new spuntini menu
Manchester’s Italian wine bar, Veeno, has just introduced an expanded spuntini menu. Inspired by Italy’s ‘aperitivo hour’, dishes on offer include generous sharing plates, authentic meats, regionally sourced cheeses, fresh paninis, salads and irresistible desserts - all with a focus on quality and great value.
Dining with friends? Tuck into traditional involtini (£10), rolls filled with prosciutto, buffalo mozzarella, bresaola and goats cheese. Or go for a platter of authentic Altamura bread topped with melting gorgonzola, aromatic pear and toasted walnuts (crostini pear e gorgonzola, £7.50).
Co-owner Nino Caruso’s family comes from Sicily (who supply much of Veeno’s wine) - and the island’s famous aubergine stew, caponata (£4) is a new option on the menu. There’s also a sweet, brie-like cheese from northern Italy called tomino (£8) which is wrapped in smoked speck and grilled to order. The result is a gooey must.
Bountiful platters of Italian meats and cheeses come with fig jam and truffled honey. The finest regional flavours are a focus throughout, and the lunch menu is excellent value.
Opt for either an authentic salad (£6.50) or freshly prepared panini (£5) with a glass of house wine, prosecco, beer or soft drink every Monday to Friday from noon to 4pm. There’s the option to upgrade to a large glass of wine for an extra £1 too.
There’s an apple or pear salad with goats’ cheese or parmigiano and a mare salad (all £6.50) which comes with specially sourced Sicilian dark belly tuna, balsamic onions, fresh tomatoes, rocket and spinach.
Confidential also recommends the goats’ cheese and sun-dried tomato Venezia panini and the incredible Como (both £5) which sees fennel-rich Tuscan pork salami (finocchiona) paired with melting gorgonzola and rocket.
For dessert there’s house favourite, tiramisu (£5.50), and an Italian take on mille feuille called torta millefoglie, served with homemade vanilla custard cream and layers of flaky pastry (£4.50).
When it comes to wine, at least half of the bottles available are sourced from Caruso’s family-run vineyard in Sicily, Caruso e Minini. Everything is worth trying but we love the wedding bouquet florals of the Zibibbo grape variety (£6.50 for 175ml / £24.50 bottle) and a dangerously moreish organic red Nero D’Avola (£7 for 175ml / £26 bottle).
Bottles from Caruso’s vineyard are complemented by ‘guest’ wines from producers that he has hand picked during trips back home.
Bountiful platters of Italian meats and cheeses come with fig jam and truffled honey. Everything revolves around the finest regional flavours, and the lunch menu is excellent value
Try a white or red wine flight (from £10), go for a matched food and wine experience (from £19.90) - or make a choice new wine cocktail menu. Options include an Italian Prosecco Mojito (£8) with rum, raspberries, mint and prosecco and Iced Mulled Wine (£7 ), a chilled blend of Sicilian Nero D’Avola, Amaretto liqueur and organic Italian orange juice. Family-produced dessert wines include sweet and soft Tagos (£4 per glass) and there are even a couple of ‘zero sugar’ wines too, exclusive to Veeno in the UK (from £5 per glass).
The restaurant and bar group was founded by Nino Caruso and his friend Andrea Zecchino who met playing football after moving to Manchester in 2009. The first Veeno opened on Brazennose Street in Manchester three years ago, and the group opens its 14th branch later this month in Stratford-upon-Avon.
With a focus on quality, Veeno’s success is no surprise. Having a vineyard in the family allows the bar to offer great value for money too, in a space that’s ideal for work and play. In fact, we can’t think of a more authentic place to get your aperitivo fix this summer.