The first year of opening a business can be one of the hardest, but a newly-opened Manchester restaurant is off to a flying start in success having been featured on a prestigious list of the very best restaurants in the UK. Having only opened its doors in February on New York Street in Manchester city centre, Higher Ground has come in 51st place in the National Restaurant Awards Top 100 list.
Newcomer to the Manchester restaurant scene, Higher Ground, a neo-bistro with a focus on seasonal dishes using locally sourced ingredients (including produce from Cinderwood, their partner farm in Nantwich) made an incredible entrance to the National Restaurant Awards Top 100 list at an awards ceremony in London last night (June 12). Higher Ground was launched by three friends, front-of-house man Richard Cossins, chef Joe Otway and wine expert Daniel Craig-Martin, and who are also the team behind New Islington Marina wine bar Flawd.
The venue was praised for creating “thoughtful and experimental dishes” that include the likes of acorn-fed pig cooked in milk; pea fritters with Quicke’s cheddar; a superbly tart dish of thinly sliced celeriac with salted blackcurrants and bay leaf; house-smoked beetroot with brill roe; and fried pig’s head with lovage mayo. Higher Ground was also hailed for its wine list featuring small-scale, low-intervention European wines as well as its “modern and minimalistic” design.
It is an incredible achievement for the restaurant to make the list having been open a matter of months, and to also be placed higher in the top 100 than many Michelin Star restaurants. Higher Ground is also the highest rated for Greater Manchester in this year’s National Restaurant Awards, placing higher than Manchester’s only Michelin Star restaurant Mana in Ancoats, which came in 71st place.
Richard Cossins, co-founder of Higher Ground, said: “We’re thrilled to receive such amazing recognition after being open only a short time. We’re so proud of the team and everyone who have been part of our journey. Exciting times are ahead!”
The best restaurant in the country according to the National Restaurant Awards list is once again Welsh restaurant Ynyshir in Powys, which was closely followed by Lancashire’s acclaimed Moor Hall in Aughton, which holds two Michelin Stars. In total, eight restaurants in the North West region made the top 100 this year, including Parkers Arms, Newton-in-Bowland (12), three Michelin star restaurant L’Enclume, Cartmel (30), Forest Side, Grasmere (60), Northcote, Langho (68) and Manifest, Liverpool (100).
See the full National Restaurant Awards 2023 list here.