It’s March, and spring is on the horizon, once the weather makes it up its mind. That shouldn’t worry us too much, as the plan is to spend our time in nicely-heated/air conditioned restaurants and bars across the North. And we’ve got a bumper crop of options this month, ranging from supper clubs (you read it here first), new menu launches, tea shops in both Manchester and Liverpool, and much much more.
As ever, the choices range from healthy to gluttonous, meat-heavy to vegan, but the one thing they have in common? They’re all must-visit destinations for your month ahead. Go forth and eat (and drink).
Here are our picks
LEAF on Portland Street, 113–115 Portland St, Manchester, M1 6DW - Visit now
Leaf has a reputation as one of the city’s standout cafes, and it’s certainly far and away the best daytime venue for food and drink on Portland Street. It has an elegant, almost artistic feel, but has an exciting vibrancy thanks to the local creative types and tea-buffs who’ve made it their home from home.
Enxaneta at Tast Cuina Catalana, 20-22 King St, Manchester, M2 6AG - Visit now
Despite all the eye-bulgingly innovative cooking techniques, the food at Enxaneta feels completely organic and natural. It’s not showy for the sake of it – although the dishes are certainly easy on the eye – it’s more of a carefully-crafted tribute to the world’s finest cuisine, matched with delicate Japanese-style concepts.
Gino D’Acampo My Pizza & Prosecco Bar, 100 Corporation Street Floor 2, Arndale, Manchester, M4 3AJ - Visit now
Here we have a special evening at Gino D’Acampo’s Pizza & Prosecco Bar. A four course meal, paired with Italian wine, and featuring a guest appearance from Gino himself. The space is lovely, all bright with huge windows, and upbeat giddy staff who are almost excited about their big boss’s upcoming appearance as the guests.
Trof Northern Quarter, 8 Thomas St, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M4 1EU - Visit now
All the dishes served from the Trof kitchen are made on site with fresh ingredients sourced as locally as possible. Their sausages are hand made by Frost’s Butchers to their own recipe and eggs are laid locally in Cheshire. You can enjoy their brunch menu until 4pm, when it changes over to their dinner menu.
Tariff & Dale, 2 Tariff Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 2FN - Visit now
Tariff & Dale a hidden gem, if you ignore the fact that the name itself provides the exact location. The thing is, it doesn’t too much wrong and it does a lot right, so this isn’t a place you should be stumbling across – Tariff & Dale is a place you should be building your evening around.
Meze & More, Sycamore Street, Sale, M33 2HD - Visit now
As people get tired of visiting the same old restaurants, and desire to save money (tonight is bring your own booze, which cuts out a hefty chunk of the average restaurant bill), it’s easy to see supper clubs becoming ever-more popular across the city. And Meze & More is as good as it gets. Home cooking that easily reaches restaurant quality, in relaxed surroundings with people who share not only an interest in food, but the wish to try something new.
Store Street Exchange, 1 Auburn St, Manchester, M1 3DG - Visit now
Store Street Exchange offers a nice midpoint between the city’s high-end restaurants and the typical hotel-based eatery. The dishes are reliably great, with a few truly excellent choices dotted throughout. Our tip? The black pudding sausage roll is a must, and if you’re in the mood for meat, meat and more meat, follow it up with the pork belly.
El Camino, 40 Flixton Road, Manchester, M41 5AA - Visit now
It’s all happening in Urmston this month. Mexican pop-up, El Camino, is taking over a little spot temporarily vacated by burger joint, Get Chucked, to throw a month-long party for Mexican food and drink. The El Camino gang’s calling it a Taco-ver and it feels like an exciting little boost to the Trafford-based satellite town.
Satisfy your hunger for knowledge as well as lunch with Scranchester’s food tours of the city centre. You may discover a new favourite hidden gem or learn a bit more about the cultural or historical significance of the food you eat all the time.
Add a more personal twist to a meal out by cooking your own three course restaurant standard meal from scratch. Food Sorcery’s cooking together evenings are all about making cookery fun and sociable whilst still producing high quality dishes.
One of Manchester’s up and coming breweries welcome you into their space to learn about the beer making process and, of course, sample the end products.
Leeds International Festival, the UK’s leading metropolitan festival of new ideas and innovation, is back for its second year, this time featuring more than 50 events and 40 speakers over 15 days.
Celebrate the brilliance of 20th century design, fashion, vehicles and entertainment at this award-winning festival set around Morecambe’s famous art deco Midland Hotel.