Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

Ian Jones, Food and Drink Editor

Right, diet over, play-acting at being vegan over (a pox on the houses of whoever came up with the term Veganuary), it’s time to start doing what you love most. Eating, drinking and eating some more. Guilt-free this time.

And lest we forget, February is the month of corporate-sponsored love so we’ve stuck a few romantic venues in there, for good measure. But really, this is just about hearty, glorious feasts, without needing to think about calories or that unused rolling contract at the local gym eating chunks out of your bank balance.

So, whether you’re looking for the best steaks in Manchester, fantastical small plates in Leeds or an eco-friendly non-meat Indian meal, you’ve come to the right place.

Here are our top five places to eat and drink during the last few days of this cold cold winter. Enjoy!

Here are our picks

  • 1. Bundobust Manchester

    Lennox Paul David

    Bundobust Manchester, 61 Piccadilly, Manchester, M1 2AG - Visit now

    It began in Leeds and recently opened shop in Manchester, on the edge of Piccadilly. And one things for sure – the team behind Bundobust have built one hell of a buzz around Manchester. For the unaware, this underground restaurant serves up tapas-style small plates of vegetarian and vegan Indian food, along with an exhaustive – and somewhat exhausting – list of beers and craft ales. The food is endlessly surprising, always delicious and the atmosphere is fresher and more electrifying than pretty much anywhere else in the city centre. Bold claims, sure, but if you’ve been, you’ll agree.

  • 2. Grill On New York Street

    Lennox Paul David

    Grill On New York Street, New York St, Manchester, M1 4BD - Visit now

    Grill On New York Street is fast-approaching its first decade in Manchester, and all signs point toward it being the first of many. The ingredients are high-class, the dishes gimmick-free and the whole experience is tailor-made to keeping everyone happy. It’s not cheap but when we’re dealing with the world’s best steaks, what is?

  • 3. Manchester House

    Ian Jones

    Manchester House, 18-22 Bridge Street, Manchester, M3 3BZ - Visit now

    It’s all change at Manchester House. Head Chef Aiden Byrne has moved onto pastures new, and in his place is one the rising stars of the UK food scene, Nottingham-born Nathanial Tofan. Nat was one of the key figures behind the launch of the Manchester’s much-praised Australasia restaurant, as well as working alongside Aiden for many years. He brings a feast of fresh ideas to the table, each of which more than matches up to his illustrious predecessor. This a mere taster, but the full tasting menu promises to be something very special indeed.

  • 4. Ham and Friends

    Ian Jones

    Ham and Friends, Grand Arcade, Leeds, LS1 6PG - Visit now

    Recent years has seen Leeds take a rapid rise up the UK foodchain, and it’s in no small part to the team behind Ham And Friends and its sister restaurant. If you care about the UK’s best dining it isn’t simply worth a visit, it’s vital. The whole experience is plate after plate of pleasure, and the staff are well aware of this, taking delight in discussing the menu like we’re sharing a fantastic secret. The restaurant name is no misnomer.

  • 5. Cottonopolis

    Cottonopolis, 16 Newton Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 2AE - Visit now

    Owned and designed by architect Nick Muir, Cottonopolis is a handsomely designed bar and restaurant with a loose Japanese theme. The menu is divided into four different elements based on the cooking method for each item: ice, fire, steam and oil. It’s a gimmick but an inventive one, catering for a variety of palates whether they be healthy eaters, grazers or plain old gluttons. The food? Nothing less than superb.

Culture Guides

Motherlogues Theatre Deli

Theatre

Queer Contact Festival, verbatim performances and sport-art collaborations top our eclectic list of drama, opera and dance this month.

Cinema

It’s Oscar season – we round up the best new and old films showing in cinemas and tell you the best place to watch the awards themselves.

Changing Lives: 200 Years of People and Protest in Sheffield at Weston Park Museum

Exhibitions

Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s packed 2018 programme, 200 years of activism and protest in the Steel City, and the curious history of colour top our latest list of exhibition highlights.

Families

Get ready for some heady cultural adventures this February with our guide to the best things to do right now with kids and book ahead for.

Author Joe Dunthorne. Photo by Angus Muir.

Literature

We have a fun-packed February leading up to a mad-busy March. There’s lots of brand-new work from both established and emerging writers, and plenty of prose and poetry to fill your mornings, afternoons and evenings.

Music

Manchester’s top music venues have been busy filling their diaries for the year ahead – with spring highlights including Fever Ray and Joan as Police Woman, plus new seasons by the likes of Manchester Camerata and the BBC Philharmonic.