Gordo reckons this under-rated gaff is clucking great

Restaurant dining is slowly returning, but many of us have been ordering more takeaways and deliveries over the past few months.

One of the most popular features on Manchester Confidential has always been our honest, unannounced and impartial restaurant reviews. Our readers come to us for the lowdown, confident that we know our stuff and will tell it straight. Without restaurants, we've not been able to write restaurant reviews. But it’s what we do.

So we’re giving you the scoop on some of the many delivery options that have sprung up. We’ll buy it, eat it - cook it if we have to - and let you know how it was. We’re not going to be scoring these ‘reviews’ - it doesn’t seem right - but we’ll let you know what you can expect and where's worth spending your money.

I’ve not been impressed during lockdown with most of the fare from Deliveroo. The bar is set so low even Nasty Nick couldn’t wriggle underneath. It's unrelentingly bleugh.

Three Chinese, one Thai, two usually great chippies and two Indians have been binned. A well-known Kentuckian fried chicken gaff disappointed me to the edge of despair. If I didn’t know better, I’d be thinking the Kentuckian franchisee was watering down the usually gloopy sticky wonderfully wrong gravy. It was wrong wrong, not right wrong. 

It will take your mind off the woes of the world more effectively than psilocybin

Their ‘fries’ are never the best, but this load of flabby unsalted badger shite was so poor that, five minutes after piling them onto the bird table, one of the squirrels jumped onto my window ledge, made sure he had my attention and held up a chip before sticking two fingers up and buggering off. 

2020 07 23 Peck And Yard Box
Peck and Yard, one of the best from a few disappointing Deliveroos

There were however two diamonds in this graveyard of culinary ambition. One was Mughli, on the curry mile, who have done a lean rebrand to ‘Mughli Charcoal Pit.’ Great packaging, super dishes, freshly cooked with well thought through spicing and generous portions that meant another great lunch three days later.

But the winner of Gordo’s lockdown deliveries is Peck and Yard.

I was giving fried chicken one last chance and fell over Peck and Yard, a brand I had never noticed before. They are in Chorlton and it turns out they’ve been open three years. They’ve been included in Confidentials’ latest new openings roundup as they are opening a second outpost in Ancoats in a couple of weeks’ time. 

2020 07 23 Peck And Yard Feast
The Feast (£23)

What turned my head? Because I’m a greedy fat bastard as well as being someone who can’t make up his mind, I ordered The Feast. This came with four wings, four ‘drumettes,’ two thighs and a breast, all fried, for £23. You can have it grilled, but that, oddly, is an extra quid.

Choose any two sides; either fried rice, salt and pepper fries, spicy rice, cheesy fries, yakisoba noodles, sweet potato fries, seaweed fries (eh?) or French fries. My two sides were fried rice and yakisoba noodles. I would get these again and again.

Then you choose five of ELEVEN (I kid you not) sauces. They are all made on the premises and are the outfit’s own recipes. They are great. Terrific. Next time, I’m choosing two pots of the Malaysian Peanut, two of Cocomango and one Katsu. 

2020 07 23 Peck And Yard Noodles
The rice and noodles made an epic second meal with the leftover chicken a few days later

I could only eat half the extras. I fried them up together a couple of days later, reheated the uneaten chicken in the oven at 180c for 15 minutes and had another blinding meal.

The feast comes in a pizza box and arrived seven minutes early, piping hot and crucially, still crunchy. The wings are Olympian. Twice fried, the coating explodes in your mouth; the meat delicate, juicy, aromatic. Dip one in the peanut sauce. It will take your mind off the woes of the world more effectively than psilocybin. 

I wish their new opening in Ancoats well. The quality will ensure their success. I’m a buyer. 

Peck and Yard, 55 Manchester Road, Chorlton, M21 9PW

Bizzarely, they don’t have a website. Find them on Just Eats. Don’t let that put you off. This gaff is head and shoulders above the usual fare on there.

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The ratings...

Value for money

Gordo got two very satisfying meals out of The Feast - so that could probably happily feed three or four regular appetites.

Packaging and delivery

Prompt delivery, all snugly packed into a cardboard pizza box so it arrived in decent condition.

Quality and quantity

If I was marking the as I would a sit-in restaurant, it would score an easy 8/10 for food; it's uncomplicated but very high quality - marking up for the excellent sauces, the well timed cooking and, by the way, Diet Coke in bottles.

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Also read: Eleven new bars, restaurants and cafes to look forward to