Tag Archives: deli

Lunya – Catalan Deli & Restaurant – Manchester

“Utterly fabulous Catalan Tapas and Deli opened on Manchester’s Deansgate……..Quality”

Having been to Barcelona a couple of times recently, eating small plates of food has taken on a new relish. Even The Flame has come round a bit to the idea. So it was with a jaunty air that we trained back into Manchester mid-afternoon to conduct a bit of pre-Christmas reconnaissance followed by a slap up binge at the newly formed Lunya. Its parent has been around in Liverpool to much acclaim for a small while already.

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The place has four entrances, two from the main drag on Deansgate, two from the back from the rather grand Barton Arcade. Two entrances take you into the Deli section. Here you can buy the incredible produce yourself and take it home. The other two take you into the bar area, where you can have a drink and casually sample the fayre on high stools and poseur tables. A staircase takes you up to the more formal sit down arrangement of a standard restaurant.

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Upper deck, bar area

The upper floors offer fine views over Deansgate or equally fine views of the upper decks of the arcade. It was the latter section that the Flame and I eventually settled. Being sixish it was pretty much full systems go in the bar area whereas our seating upstairs was only just starting up.

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We started our review of the extensive red and yellow menu. A bottle of Moritz, a Barcelona brew, was used to quench the initial thirst. Our table was a little isolated and given the air con setting a little cool. A nearby representative adjusted things so that we could remove our coats! Once settled we made our choice of three tapas each.

Croquetas (£6.50) croquettes of the day. This time made with crab and leek. Five, hot balls of crunchy goodness with a crabbie inside. Delish. One of my choices.

Costillas Ibericás (£7.75) slow roasted ribs from the giant Ibericó pigs, falling off the bone, in a special Catalan BBQ sauce with tamarind, orange and fennel seed. Pic of the dishes. Arguably the finest ribs I’ve ever eaten. The sauce with the fennel was simply ‘historic’.

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Iberico ribs, croquettes, hotpot

Catalan Hotpot (£6.95) a signature dish blending Catalunya with the North West of England, made with chorizo and morcilla. Reminded me of Nigel Haworths lamb version, but not quite as good. That’s no slight though, still thoroughly enjoyable. A bit more Morcilla would have helped for me.

Chickens strips wrapped in broken potato crisps (£6.95). Inspired by a good friend, Albert Adriá. Served with a stunning pimentón infused allioli. The flame loves chicken so this was hers. Decent enough, the allioli was stunning. We used it for dipping throughout the meal, superb.

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Sticky chicken, grilled aubergine, chickpeas

Escalavida (£5.95) chargrilled peppers, aubergines, onions, courgettes on toasted sourdough with a romesco sauce. Probably our least favourite dish. No particular reason, just not as good as the rest. Wouldn’t have this one again.

Garbanzos (£6.55) middle eastern spice infused chick peas with butternut squash, almonds and apricots. Picked by the flame, she loves chick peas. To be fair these were great too. Decent bowl full, these went a long way. Cumin was in there along with the nutty crunch. Very good veggie dish.

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Cheese and cheesecake

As I hope you have come to expect, I ventured to the end with a sweet dessert. White chocolate cheesecake with a quince jelly topping (£5.95). Absolutely superb. Love white chocolate, love cheesecake. Perfect for me. The flame went for a two cheese platter (£9.45). A bit steep for the money. Came on a plank with a fig chutney and quince.

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The deli section

I have to say all the dishes were delivered hot and fresh. Bill came to £66 for the two of us. Sam our new, spanish, waitress was bubbly, efficient and helpful. I’ll definitely be back. There are too many wonderful dishes on the menu that have to be tried yet. I reckon a casual slide in the bar next. Pull up a pew, a glass of Rioja, those ribs again and then start hitting the fish dishes. It looks like I’ll be back many times yet. Highly recommended. Oh and they do paella… forgot about that, so yes got to go back.

Lunya Manchester
Barton Arcade,
Deansgate,
Manchester,
M3 2BB
Tel: 0161 413 3317
http://www.lunya.co.uk

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Katsouris Deli – Manchester

“Fast, great food, but don’t get in the wrong queue!”

Friday lunchtime is down as a big treat for The Cooktwit. In order to maintain the racing snake hips and the thunderous six pack (pack it in – Ed) Monday to Thursday are days of rest in the food dept. These days are spent either fasting (see my take on fasting here) or munching on grass. Weather permitting I search out some decent streetfood, (though since the loss of “MummaSchnitzel” that’s becoming a little tough) after that invariably I end up at Katsouris Deli. It’s housed in a grand old building on the corner of Deansgate and John Dalton Street. It’s an offshoot of the original Greek deli that marks the entrance to the famous Bury market.

A fine exterior
A fine exterior

Entering at either entrance you invariably meet a lengthy queue. Don’t despair! If its hot food you want simply hang in there and walk at a steady pace. You will soon hear the shriek, like a ‘banchee’ with an ingrowing toenail, “NEXT!”

The lengthy queues subside quickly - honest!
The lengthy queues subside quickly – honest!

Be ready though, woe betide that you get close to the hot counter without knowing what you want! Ive seen grown men weep and skulk sheepishly out into the street with little more than a bag of crisps! Such is the rabid efficiency of a lunchtime service ‘tyrekickers’ are quickly shown the door.

But, once you’ve done your homework, the rewards are bountiful. A flavoursome feast for little over a fiver is there for the taking. The decor and furniture is functional. A periphery of vinyl banquette, supplemented with central round tables and bistro chairs provides a good deal of standard seating. I prefer to sit on the high stools which hedge up to the touch down bench which runs all down one side. From here one can gaze into the bustle of the busy street outside. The fun is boundless watching people getting run over at the busy crossroads, dodging the green lights and cyclists running the red lights. That said if you really want action there is some payment seats outside where you get the sound as well!

Signage, Pork and greenery
Signage, Pork and greenery

Basic high level signage gives you the combo’s available. The hot carvery section below lets you see what you’re getting. Spicy paella rice (no seafood though), salad, jacket potatoes or various ‘bunnage’ are the ‘carby’ accompaniments to your meat.

My usual is the salad which you serve yourself from the catering bins that run down one side. I pick the protein from the carvery, sliced pork, gammon, lamb, pulled pork, ham, chicken piri piri, big frankfurters its all top stuff. They all come with their own trimmings, apple sauce, barbecue sauce, onions, stuffing. The salad offer is also top draw. Big chillies, boiled eggs, humus, potato salad, bags of greenery, mainly rocket with sun-dried tomatoes, parmesan, chick peas, olives all with a mediterranean bias.

The salad bins, roast pork and bags of greenery!
The salad bins, roast pork and bags of greenery!

If I’m short of funds you can’t beat the soups. there are normally two on offer, homemade, tasty and £2 a pop whether served in a big paper cup or in a big dish, and it comes with a few swabs of bread to mop up.

So there you have it, a quick Cook Twit recommendation on how to get yourself a decent feed on a busy lunchtime in down town Manchester. There are obviously lots more to go at, but so far this is as good as it gets for me. Give it a go.

Katsouris Deli
113 Deansgate
Manchester
M3 2BQ

0161 937 0010

http://www.katsourisdeli.co.uk