Zouk

Ian Jones, Food and Drink Editor

These days, Manchester has a huge range of high-quality Indian restaurants and when it comes to the city centre, Zouk is arguably the best. A favourite for years with stars as varied as Peter Kay and Aubrey Drake Graham (that’s Drake to you and me), it must be doing something very right indeed.

Based in the Quadrangle building, just off Oxford Road, it’s a smart, modern space with huge glass windows and a wildly popular outside shisha bar. It describes itself as “a new generation Indian and Pakistani restaurant” and that’s how it feels – a world away from the ramshackle Indian restaurants down Curry Mile.

As it’s January, it’s the welcome return of Zouk’s pocket-friendly bottomless curry deal. It’s exactly what it sounds like: unlimited servings of curry, rice, naan and onion bhajis for just £20, Monday to Friday, 5pm to 11pm. What could be better? It might go against the hair-shirt “January is for abstinence” narrative and that’s a good thing, sometimes it’s nice to just stuff your gob with great food.

Excitingly, the bottomless menu changes every day, meaning you can visit every day of the week and always find something new to try. We visit on Tuesday, meaning we’re treated to a flawless chicken jalfrezi, all pleasing heat and spices, onions and chilis mixed up with egg in a thick sauce.

But the lamb and spinach karahi is the standout dish of the day, and yes, we do grab an extra, and possibly unnecessary portion, no regrets. The meat is soft and cooked so slowly it’s part meat, part vapour; the dark murky flavours balanced with a fresh, spiced-up spinach sauce. Our advice? Get this, get another portion, and then another, for luck.

The onion bhajis are crunchy and crumbly, all deep-fried tendrils that soak up the sauce well, as does the huge naan bread, which is probably too buttery to justify for most New Year resolutions, but worth it all the same.

Not fancy the meat options? There’s mutter paneer for squeaky cheese-lovers who want it paired with a spicy tomato masala; and for vegans, chole masala, Zouk’s well-made take on the chickpea-based street food classic.

As you’d expect from a restaurant that’s been packing them in for well over a decade, Zouk rarely disappoints. All the dishes are high quality and the bottomless deal is a nice way to kick off a year of fine eating at an affordable price.

Unit 5 Chester StreetManchesterM1 5QS View map
Telephone: 07711 017352 Visit Now

Opening Hours

  • Monday8:00am - 12:00am
  • Tuesday8:00am - 12:00am
  • Wednesday8:00am - 12:00am
  • Thursday8:00am - 12:00am
  • Friday8:00am - 12:00am
  • Saturday8:00am - 12:00am
  • Sunday8:00am - 12:00am

Always double check opening hours with the venue before making a special visit.

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