Pizza, more pizza, and other new food spots from Portland Street to Prestwich
Manchester does not have enough pizza. That's why there are at least three new places opening soon. To be fair, some are in places where a bit of artisan charcuterie and a drizzle of black truffle honey on a pizza are very welcome (we're looking at you, Radcliffe). Either way, if your main favourite thing to eat is hot bread with melted cheese on it, you are in the right place. Elsewhere there are two new spots for kosher dining, Manchester outposts from popular chains, more small plates (also criminally underrepresented here of course) and an all-you-can-eat sushi spot.
Yep, it's our latest roundup of new restaurants, bars and cafes for Manchester.
What: The Foundry
Where: Store Street, Manchester, M1 2WD
There’s a new “creative neighbourhood” coming to a 200,000 sq ft former factory site between Store Street and Ducie Street in Manchester and the team behind Ramona and The Firehouse (and then some) are going to fill it with all manner of fantastical things. Split into Diecast and Diecast Studios, the latter will include a gym, tech hub and studios whilst the former will be all about hospitality. Diecast will pack a beer hall, night market, food hall (including a rumoured barbecue grill concept) and bakery into the former Presbar Diecastings Factory as well as a stage for events. Traders remain under wraps but a 1am curfew at the weekend suggests the place will get lively.
Where: 76 Bridge St, Ramsbottom, Bury BL0 9AG
Ramsbottom’s Hungry Duck Bistro has relaunched as Colleen’s. Named after head chef Tom Morgan’s late grandmother, owners Tom and Ellen Cunningham always had plans to rename the restaurant but cited previous time and financial constraints as a reason for delaying. Announcing the changes on Instagram, a statement said: “This will make the restaurant a lot more personal to us and enable us to make it our own. Although we know we are not perfect, each day we are getting closer to becoming the neighbourhood restaurant we really want to be. Affordable, approachable & delicious.” Colleen’s will continue serving favourites from the Hungry Duck menu as well new dishes and a more casual offering taking in brunch and all-day dining.
Where: 103 High Street, Manchester, M4 1HQ
Rumour has it that cat hair is Gooey’s secret ingredient, so it's a good job its supposedly opening a new tooth-decaying venture at the old Cat Cafe site. You already know the drill with the Gooey goodies, they’re massive, melt in the middle, and currently available at Ducie Street Warehouse from Wednesday to Sunday. All made from scratch in Manchester, these cookies, doughnuts and buns, hun, will also be available for delivery nationwide very soon too. Our powers of deduction and social media stalking skills saw a little neon Gooey sign plugged into an otherwise empty unit at 103 High Street, so correct us if we’re wrong, but we think it might be a sign.
Where: 25b Bury New Rd, Prestwich, Manchester M25 9JZ
When: Open now
Lahlu is “the ultimate Middle Eastern and Moroccan experience” from the same team as another popular Prestwich gem, Ta’am. Lanterns and tiles set the Middle Eastern scene wonderfully, and the menu is far removed from the swathes of small plates and tapas-style dishes that the city centre is drowning in.
We’re talking bruschetta with foie gras, ribeye steak with foie gras and the Lahlu beef and foie gras burger. Oh, did we mention that there’s plenty of foie gras in the building?
Apparently inspired by the colourful streets and excitement of Tel Aviv, perhaps more specifically the thriving Moroccan community that lives in the Israeli city, Lahlu's food is all kosher. With a hotchpotch of influences, the wide and varied menu has caught our eye for its more simple and traditional dishes like roasted lamb, chicken musakhan and Moroccan vegetable tagine.
When: Opening soon
Luisa’s has been running a popular joint at Radcliffe Market Hall with its wood-fired dough since 2019. Growing faster than the pizza duo ever imagined though, the spot has now decided to expand and open a permanent restaurant with a broader menu of pasta dishes, starters, sharers and desserts. Although the team has already raised £70,000 to make this bricks and mortar venture a reality, rising building costs have meant that the crowdfunding campaign is still alive and kicking for the final 15 grand.
The Luisa’s menu is laced with marinara, Calabrese, and classic pizzas, and looking at their Insta, the new place is looking pretty swanky. The exact location for the Radcliffe restaurant is yet to be confirmed, but if the crusts are still crispy and the truffle honey topping stays, there are no complaints on our end.
Where: 14 Brazennose St, Manchester M2 6LW
We got wind that Maray was opening in the former Veeno site on the newly done up Lincoln Square (mere moments from the Confidentials office, *air punch*) early in Feb and it was announced to the public a couple of weeks later. You may or may not realise that Confidentials isn’t just a Manchester-based publication but has its finger on the pulse in Liverpool and Leeds too - as well as our newest family member Confidential Guides which will eventually take over the world, probably. While we miss the Sicilian wine bar, we’re cock a hoop that one of our favourite Liverpudlian luminaries is moving in.
Never heard of Maray? The restaurant is loosely named after the Marais district of Paris which has a strong immigrant population, particularly of Jewish heritage, and its small plates have a smattering of French influence as well as bits from all over the Med and Middle East. Ultimately, the food is big on bold flavours, so expect loads of herby drizzles, luscious hummus and tahini smears, cracking falafels, powdered beetroot, tons of chilli and garlic, and a small but perfectly formed cocktail menu. It’s gonna be boss that, la.
What: Mollie’s Motel & Diner
Where: Old Granada Studios
When: spring 2022
While we cover the motel aspect of this anticipated new opening from the Soho House team elsewhere, the diner part of the set-up deserves a look too. Self-described as a “contemporary stance on the 1950s classic American diner,” you will not be shocked to find out that burgers, fries, mac n’ cheese, ribs, wings etc etc are on the menu. Very much an all-day casual dining sort of place with a particular emphasis on breakfast – eggs, pancakes, waffles, you get the idea - and a decent kids’ menu too. You can start your day with a good strong bottomless cup of coffee but no cherry pie on the menu as of yet, which is surely an oversight. The diner itself will be casually stylish and no doubt highly Instagrammable as befits its founding company.
Where: John Dalton St, Manchester M2 6LE
You can imagine the board meeting: OK guys, we’re opening an Italian restaurant in hip and happening Manchester, any ideas for a name? Dave, you start, "Erm, mozzarella?" Great, that’s that decided then. OK, ideas for the logo, Carol? "How about we do the, erm, colours of the Italian flag?" Genius. Let’s go with that then. What shall we sell? "Italian, Mozzarella, Tricolore - How about pizza?" Great. That’s done and dusted, let’s go for lunch. But wait. That sign looks kinda familiar. Yep, it’s exactly the same sign for Mozzarella as the one on the King’s Rd in Prestwich that we mentioned in our recent kosher restaurant roundup. A kosher pizza place for town is something less predictable at least. Mozzarella also caters really well to gluten-free and vegan diets.
Where: Stevenson Square, Northern Quarter
When: early 2022
Zanna Group – behind such Manchester names as Mughli, Evelyn’s, The Daisy, Arlo’s and Gooey – has taken over the bottom floor of Habib House in Stevenson Square for its next venture, the arty-sounding Public. The restaurant will be “inspired by Parisian culture and artistic eclecticism”. More specifically this translates to all-day dining (including brunch, naturellement) and a handy line in cocktails. Details are sparse but you can expect “Modern European meets addictive and punchy Asian flavours with a nod to NYC’s Chinatown.” Signature dishes will be cooked over binchotan charcoal in the open kitchen alongside the cocktail bar.
What: The Real Greek
Where: Unit R8B, The Orient, Trafford Centre, Manchester M17 8EQ
When: Open now
Praise Zeus! Fresh from opening its first Manchester restaurant in November last year, The Real Greek is pushing onwards with its northern odyssey to the Trafford Centre at the beginning of March. If our review of the Mediterranean restaurant is anything to go by, it will fit perfectly into The Orient food court where it will join neighbours Pizza Express and Italian tapas place, Pesto
The Real Greek is a popular brand in London and the south and is part of Fulham Shore Group which also owns pizza restaurant chain, Franco Manca. The perfect spot to get stuck into a bit of souvlaki, moussaka and addictive fried halloumi nuggets before bagging some bargains and stopping to admire the iconic dolphin fountain.
What: Riva Blu
Where: Corn Exchange, Exchange Sq, Manchester M4 3TR
When life gives you the lemons of restaurant closure, turn them into the sweet, sweet lemonade of a rebrand. That’s right, Manchester’s Gino: My Restaurant, namesake restaurant of TV chef and professional rascal Gino D’Campo has risen from the flames of closure to become Riva Blue. Owned by the same restaurant group as Piccolino, expect “an authentic Italian restaurant in Manchester’ and all of your favourite ingredients that start with the letter P.
What: Rudy’s x 2
Where: 30 Portland St, Manchester M1 4GS
If music be the food of love, Portland street's heart has been going hungry since Dawson’s music shop with its big pianos and wall of guitars closed its doors for good. But if food be the food of love, well then your heart don’t need guitars. Dawsons, don’t let the door Creek on the way out because Rudy’s is moving in.
If you need us to explain Rudy’s to you, you must be new in town. Welcome! You’re going to love it here - just be careful to stay away from the edges of canal paths at night. Rudy’s is widely considered to be the best pizza in Manchester, some say the world, and it’s already got nine pizza places around GM and the UK. It might be time to change its name to Greedy’s. Do we need another one in town? Probably not but Portland Street could really do with a bit of love so we’re not going to complain too much about that one. Rudy's has also just announced that it will be opening in Chorlton, which is already pretty well represented for pizza. Time will tell whether one more pizza place (however great) will prove too many.
What: Sushi Mami
Where: 111 Portland St, Manchester M1 6DN
When: open now
If you’re big into Daleks, Fab Cafe is probably on your favourite bars in Manchester list. But it’s never been one for a decent scran. What’s a Dalek’s favourite food? Everyone knows it’s sushi, so it’s good news that the very OTT Sushi Mami has moved in next door. This one’s been open since the tail end of 2021 but you might not have spotted its neon pink sign. The menu looks interesting, with all kinds of pop-sushi covered in mayo and crispy bits - as opposed to the more austere stuff that Japan is known for. Interesting menu items include a dish of "fresh spinach cubes" that look suspiciously like defrosted ones from the supermarket freezer section. As well as a vast a la carte packed with gunkan, nigiri and maki, there's also an all you can eat option. All you can eat sushi, what could possibly go wrong?
What: Town Bar
Where: 26 Lower Hillgate, Stockport, SK1 1JE
Stockport’s Underbanks have got it all goin’ on at the minute with new bakeries, vegan cake shops and vintage emporiums, but one thing that’s missing is some pornstar martini trees and rose gold cocktail shakers. With the opening date yet to be confirmed, all Town Bar has told to the townies is to expect a “relaxed lounge atmosphere” and some “high end” cocktails. The council have let the spot have a late-night closing slot too, so you can stumble your way around the cobbled streets of Lower Hillgate and wander into the night with a belly full of Negronis. Make sure you're wearing your flats.
Where: Cheetham Hill
More sushi news. Popular sushi, sashimi and poke spot Unagi already has locations in Wilmslow, Altrincham, Didsbury and MediaCity and has announced it will be opening a "city centre" branch soon. We've done a little digging and it seems it will actually be more towards the northern outskirts but we don't have stone-cold deets just yet and the Unagi lot are keeping their gobs tightly shut.
Either way, townies will soon be in walking distance of Unagi's colourful, pan Asian street food. Expect tobiko, teriyaki and tuna for days as well as copious edible flowers.
What: The White Horse
Where: Chester Rd, Churton, Chester CH3 6LA
Gary Usher is doing a pub and it’s potentially going to be called The White Horse. Based in Churton, Gary tweeted on 19 January that he’d had an offer accepted on a pub and further details of the site were released on March 4. For some reason people got really weird about him saying it would be dog-friendly, but that’s people for you, eh? Elsewhere in the Elite Bistroverse, there’s also a tapas restaurant on the way called Joya. What Gary Usher is yet to confirm, however, is where Joya is going to be. Will it be in Merseyside? Will it be in Greater Manchester or will it be in Leeds even? Who knows. What we do know, is that Elite Bistros knows its way around plates of food so there’s the potential for it to be very good. And just like the pope is Catholic and a bear shits in the woods, there’s further crowdfunding. Gary is aiming to raise a whopping £2m selling shares in Elite Bistros with a crowdfunder kicking off on 4 April.
What: Wing Shack
Where: 65 Deansgate
When: spring 2022
Dreamed up by three friends from Loughton in Essex with a particular passion for the chicken in all its glory, the mini Wing Shack empire now has outposts in London's Selfridges, at the Good Mixer pub in Camden, Canary Wharf and Holloway. Its first venture north will see it take over the old Barburrito on Deansgate, serving up wings, wraps and bites in its signature marinades as well as burgers and vegan options. The company works with charity Only a Pavement Away, which looks to employ ex-offenders and homeless people in the hospitality sector.
Read next: Manchester's most missed chef, Robert Owen Brown is back
Read again: ‘Waste not, want more’ - The Mekong Cat, Stockport, reviewed
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