The Wishing Well, 1d School Ln, Didsbury, , Manchester , M20 6SA – Visit Now
Didsbury Village has a new bar and restaurant, The Wishing Well. Our visit starts well, with cocktails on a Chesterfield-style leather sofa beside a crackling fire, and only gets better from there on in.
Sipping a fruity Berry Bubbly and a zingy Cosmo Crush, we admire the huge bespoke chandelier hanging down from the top floor – an imposing feature made from an old cartwheel and several types of vintage lamps, jugs and teapots.
Then, upstairs for the meal. First, a pair of sweet and salty halloumi and pepper skewers in a smoky barbecue ketchup, alongside the house sharing platter – a generous selection of Mediterranean treats such as Parma ham, burrata, hummus, plump green olives, artichokes and deliciously tangy sun-blushed tomatoes.
Drinks-wise, we opt for an elegant strawberry Bellini and refreshing Cucumber Cooler – the latter designed by the manager and consisting of gin, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, apple juice and a long spiral of cucumber around the inside of the glass. It’s a standout drink and a perfectly seasonal light and summery spritz-style cocktail.
The venue is relaxed and welcoming, and the service always comes with a smile
A main of earthy wild mushroom risotto hits all the right notes, whilst the fish and chips are a beautiful sight (and taste) for the hungry diner. A generous portion of battered cod is deep fried to a rich golden brown and served with incredible chips – the Wishing Well menu calls these ‘proper chips’ and they’re not wrong. We can only assume they’re at least double-fried, judging by their soft, fluffy middle and crispy exterior. This is accompanied by some exceptionally good mushy peas and a tangy homemade tartare sauce.
Finally, dessert. Our charming waitress brings us a delightful, warm chocolate brownie sprinkled with Biscoff crumbs and served with honeycomb and vanilla ice cream, plus what the menu terms simply as ‘Black Forest Gateau with cherry sorbet’. Spoiler alert: this is not the creamy gateau you know and love from 80s pub menus or 90s Sara Lee boxes. Rather it’s a delicately formed bombe of chocolate mousse in a matte cocoa butter velvet coating, with sweet cherry sorbet and pools of cherry and vanilla sauces.
The Wishing Well is a welcome addition to Didsbury Village and doesn’t set a foot wrong. Whether you’re looking for a place to visit with friends or a hot date, the menu is full of crowd-pleasing options, the venue is relaxed and welcoming, and the service always comes with a smile.