Welcome to life post-lockdown.
It’s surreal, isn’t it? Being able to walk into restaurants again and interact with in-real-life human beings. It’s a luxury we Mancs were starved of for so long, our now anti-social brains don’t exactly know how to cope with this newfound freedom. All we really know how to do is eat and drink, the latter of which we do exceptionally well, in our humble opinion. And luckily for us, these solid skills can finally be put to some use – with a number of brand new restaurants opening their doors for the first time ever just this month. Here’s our guide to some of the very new best restaurants to try in Manchester this May.
Opening just last month with a large outdoor terrace and tipi space, Ramona MCR has quickly become Manchester’s biggest hotspot – with tables completely booking out for weeks after they opened. Now, the team is hard at work opening the transformed MOT station, where guests will be able to continue enjoying their Detroit-style pizza with hot honey, Margaritas and top tier rotating craft beers. Inside will be open soon, but for now, you can enjoy the covered(!!) terrace come rain or shine. Ramona, 40 Swan St, M4 5JG.
2. American Pies
The brainchild of the team behind Brewski, American Pies isn’t quite the new kid on the block – serving up their Chicago deep-dish pizzas for a good couple of months already – but it is the first time the venue has opened indoors thanks to Covid. Opening on May 19th, the restaurant serves up huge deep dish pizzas with an array of toppings, garlic knots, deep-fried lasagne bites and Grandma-style dessert pies. American Pies, Unit 1, 58 W Mosley St, M2 3HZ.
First Street Bar & Kitchen is the brand new collaboration between Gino D’Acampo and Meliá Hotels, with Manchester first on their list for the brand new series of bars and restaurants. Featuring a colourful, contemporary vibe, the restaurant offers up signature Gino dishes, and also boasts a Spritz bar and a huge outdoor terrace that attracts the sunshine all day long. Expect classic Aperol Spritz, tapas-style dishes and a bright and open, Mediterranean atmosphere. First Street Bar & Kitchen, INNSIDE Manchester, 1 First St, M15 4RP.
4. Seven Bro7hers, Media City
Opening just this week, Seven Bro7hers has opened its third site in Manchester, with a casual beer house in the uber swanky MediaCityUK. There, guests can expect the full roster of Seven Bro7hers Salford-made beers, as well as Si4ters gins, pub-inspired grub (including burgers and fish and chips), as well as really cool summer greenhouses that are perfect for the warmer days with friends. Seven Bro7hers, The Greenhouse, 101-110 Broadway, Salford, M50 2EQ.
5. Society MCR
A brand new taproom at the helm of West Yorkshire’s Vocation Brewery, Society MCR is set to open its doors for the very first time this May 20th, with a number of local food vendors taking up residence in the lively and vibrant space. Expect NYC-style pizza from Dokes Pizzeria; from the team behind Elnecot, Yorkshire-fave burgers from Slap and Pickles, Chaat Cart and beers from Vocation themselves. The space will host regular live music, and even boasts a sun-soaked outdoor terrace for summer days. Society MCR, 101 Barbirolli Square, M2 3BG.
6. Lazy Tony’s Lasagneria
Dedicated to really, bloody good lasagne, Lazy Tony’s has quite the niche – and it’s a very welcome addition to the Ancoats scene. Describing themselves as a ‘Slab Shack’, the weekend spot pays homage to the classic Italian dish (which is highly underrated, in our opinion), with both beef and vegan lasagnas and ‘unofficially officially the best tiramisu in the world’ on the menu. Open Friday-Sunday, guests can pre-order lasagne here, before collecting from their Ancoats Slab Shack. Lazy Tony’s Lasagneria, 23 Radium St, Ancoats, M4 6AY.
7. The Blues Kitchen
The Blues Kitchen isn’t just a bar or a restaurant, it’s an experience in itself. Regularly hosting live musicians, who’ll be playing the very best blues and rock & roll every week, the bar combines many of the joys of the deep South – including beers, bourbon, blues and barbecue. Enjoy jazz and soul from the bar and restaurant while you knock back their delicious cocktails and barbecued grub, or experience a live gig in the concert hall – with a roster of talent booked up for the foreseeable future. The Blues Kitchen, 13 Quay St, M3 3HN.
8. Lost Cat NQ
New to the Northern Quarter, the Lost Cat opened its doors for the first time this week, offering a modern ‘neighbourhood’ vibe with cocktails, live music, DJs and a drool-worthy menu cooked up by the team behind Eat New York and Triple Bagels. Expect salt beef, pastrami, sandwiches, burgers and even vegan grub, as well as a seriously cool basement dive bar from the team behind Bunny Jackson’s. Lost Cat, 64 Oldham St, M4 1LE.
Part of the brand new Qbic Hotel, Motley Manchester is a seriously lavish new spot by the busting Spinningfields district – boasting eclectic decor and a fantastic outdoor terrace space to enjoy on summer days. Providing “unpretentious” dishes for guests, the restaurant will use in-season locally sourced produce all year round, with a menu of cocktails, small plates, Mediterranean-inspired dishes and even karaoke rooms for the livelier of guests to take advantage of. Motley Manchester, 115 Deansgate, M3 2NW.
10. Mule, Ancoats
Quietly opening in Ancoats just last month, Mule Coffee is a contemporary new cafe and eatery – serving fantastic Grindsmiths coffee by day and cocktails by night. Opening indoors for the first time this month, the versatile venue offers up a purposefully crafted menu of breakfast and brunch dishes – with classics such as chorizo hash, brioche french toast and burrata on sourdough on the menu. The cafe takes pride in its exceptionally sourced produce, with each ingredient sourced based on its high quality and great flavour. Mule Coffee, 13 Blossom Street, M4 5AF.
11. South Manny Flavaz
South Manny Flavaz has long been a cult fave here in Manchester, but just this year, they opened their first-ever brick and mortar venue – which, due to lockdown, has been unable to properly open its doors until now. Now, fans of the fried chicken joint can enjoy a small outdoor terrace, two floors of seating, and an old-school street soul soundtrack while chowing down on the moreish menu – as well as a purpose-built mezzanine designed for unwinding with friends after a long day at work. South Manny Flavaz, Unit 227 The Great Northern, Deansgate, M3 4EN.
12. The Smithfield Social
Taking over the former Teacup Kitchen site in the Northern Quarter, The Courteeners’ Liam Fray is behind the brand new Smithfield Social – an all-day dining destination inspired by the Big Apple. The focus is very much on brunch and subs, with a menu packed full of all-day options such as their N’duja lasagne, matcha pancakes, meatball sub, and Korean fried chicken. The diverse menu has tons more on offer, however, with cocktails, beers and more also available. The Smithfield Social, 53 – 55 Thomas St, M4 1NA.
13. Birria Brothers Tacos
Founded by the team behind The Koffee Pot, Birria Brothers Tacos have been in high demand since they began serving in March (with actual queues around the block!) – and now, Mancs can enjoy them indoors at The Koffee Pot every Friday-Sunday. The juicy tacos, which are made with slow-cooked beef and goat, are served with beef broth for dipping – inspired by a relatively new food trend that took Mexico by storm a few years back. Now, we Mancs can get in on the action, with a choice of beef, goat or vegan oyster mushroom tacos available. Birria Brothers Tacos, The Koffee Pot, 84-86 Oldham St, M4 1LE.
14. Fat Hippo
Part of the brand new Lane7 complex, Newcastle’s Fat Hippo is finally here – and the menu options are mouthwateringly good. We’re talking peanut butter burgers, quadruple patty burgers, and huge portions of buttermilk chicken – to name a few highlights. Quickly becoming one of the city’s favourite burger joints, the concession has a pretty solid vegan menu, as well as a lengthy chicken menu, tons of beef burgers and even better, a lengthy menu of sides that even Pizza Hut can’t compete with. Fat Hippo, Lane7, 235 Deansgate, M3 4EN.
Opening just this week, Simon Shaw’s brand new restaurant Habas offers a unique, Middle Eastern concept in the city, combining the casualness of late-night cocktail bars with the charm of the Middle East. Consisting of multiple areas throughout the space, guests can enjoy the main restaurant and atmospheric, open kitchen, a bar area, a live music lounge and a beautifully decorated private dining room. If that wasn’t all, there’ll also be live music, cocktails and a menu of mezze, seafood, meat, vegetables and grains, desserts, and sweets designed for everyone to enjoy. Habas, 43A Brown St, M2 2JJ.
Starting life back in 2015 as the UK’s first-ever vegan pizzeria, Purezza is finally making its way up North after dominating the South, providing plant-based Neapolitan pizzas for us to enjoy. Taking over the former Dough site, the pizzeria will open on June 21st, with glorious flavours such as vegan n’duja, a ‘cheese steak’ calzone, ‘the one with the potatoes’ and even a wild truffle pizza. Purezza, 77 High St, M4 1FS.