Tag Archives: Runaway Beers

Evelyn’s Cafe Bar – Manchester

“I love the Northern Quarter bars in Manchester. Don’t get to them often enough. Evelyn’s Cafe Bar pushes the food boundaries a little further with a varied and flavourful menu”

Finally decide to make the effort. Its 5.30 another office shift complete. I trudged through torrential rain to meet my younger ‘bruv’ Chris. Evelyn’s boasts an understated frontage. Its several minutes of frantic texting before said relative shuffles up the stairs to doff his cap and shed his protective shell. The standard NQ, uppercase, terracotta signage and light door manifestation is all that stands between the public and the delights within.

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Still once in it’s a fine space. Only a handful of punters were in, and we settled for a naturally lit table near the window. I perched on a trendy grey sofa looking outwards to survey the scene. Quality light oak tables, each sporting natty chequered napkins in readiness. The ‘de riguer ‘ Northern Quarter exposed brick and bare metal lighting brackets are all in place. Its smart enough, great for a casual dine. The space is dominated by the sky blue exposed kitchen which juts into frame.

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We both settled in to a small bottle of Runaway pale ale (thick end of a fiver) and run through the grey on white menu. It’s an eclectic mix of small plates, sandwiches, large plates all laced with spice, herbs, pulses, grains and beans. Chris points out that his other half would love here as she is a ‘veggie’.

The prices are all prescribed in ‘pointage’ terms. Everything is something point 5 or point 9. We assume they are in pounds!

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We select the smashed avocado with pickled chilli and crackers (£4) and Korean chicken with roasted chilli (£6.50) to start. By hokey the chicken had a kick! A lime dressing tried to keep the flames down, but not much. The ratio of crumb to chicken was a bit higher than I would have liked but all in all, a decent start. 

For mains I went for the crab and shrimp burger with basil aioli, chilli, fennel and chips (£14). I was swayed by the word crab, always a tempter for me. In truth I probably played a bit too safe. The ‘burger’ was basically a deep fried crab and shrimp paste patty. Very nice, decent chips but perhaps not what I had in mind. Our kid was far more adventurous and went for seared mackerel with chilli, mint, vegetables and black rice (£14.50). The mackerel was nicely charred, the black rice a revelation and all set over a pleasant slick of green mint sauce. I think he won that one.

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Smashed avocado, korean chicken, mackerel, crab & prawn burger 

I won dessert though! Get this, a lime, avocado and honey cheesecake (£5.90 or 5.9). Set on a flap jack base it was an acquired taste, but nevertheless a taste that I did acquire by about the third fork full. Sprinkled with pistachio it was a fine end. The young relative swayed by figs, went figs, chocolate and rosewater ice cream (5.5). I perhaps should point out my brother is a prodigious talent in the world of wolfing down food. I did manage to taste a small forkful before it quickly went south. Very nice I recall.

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Runaway pale ale, figs, chocolate, rose water ice cream, lime, avocado, honey cheesecake!

All in the bill chipped in at just short of seventy quid or 69.8. Bit hefty for a casual tea, but twenty of that went on the excellent Runaway beers. Evelyn’s is the latest addition to the empire being constructed by the local food entrepreneurs who own the Mughli(s) (reviewed here) and The Railway Cafe in Alderley Edge (reviewed here). All three for me offer a completely unique dining experience. Full of different flavours, some hit, some miss but all beautifully delivered in smart surrounds. Give them all a go.

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Evelyn’s Cafe Bar
G18 — SMITHFIELD BUILDING
TIB ST,
MANCHESTER
M4 1NB
09:00 – 23:00 MON – SUN
HELLO@EVELYNSCAFEBAR.COM
T 0161 834 3303

http://www.evelynscafebar.com

The Railway Cafe and Gin Bar (Mughli) – Alderley Edge

“A salad for Sunday Lunch, are you mad?”

You’re not if it’s a Mughli salad! Mughli is a pretty famous (and rather sensational) Indian Restaurant based on the curry mile in Rusholme (see review here). However, they are starting to spread out a bit. A smart place in Knutsford has been around for some time now and something is due in The Northern Quarter Manchester later in the year. Squeezed in between is this little ‘pop up’ restaurant in Alderley Edge. It was only meant to last 12 weeks last year, but it seems to have grown legs and extended itself. Good job really or else I would have missed it!

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Shop front, Gin making facilities

The Flame reluctantly agreed to the visit so long as a romp onto The Edge itself was involved. She doesn’t really like Indian food. I ventured it’s not really Indian and she would like it! We stepped in off the street. It is basically a converted shop.

Inside the simple shop front bearing a simple, smart graphic is a simple kit out. Old apple boxes form the shelving behind the bar. Basic tables and chairs abound with industrial stooling at the bar. A chilled soundtrack wafts through the bijou space. Natural light streams in from the street onto the touch down benching at the front. It reminds me a little bit of Levanter Foods in Ramsbottom (see here) in terms of feel and space.

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Unlike Levanter there are a few outdoor tables and chairs to allow for the alfresco experience. Sadly it was a little bit cool for that when we were there. Also sadly, there weren’t many people in. Two at the front, two at the bar and that was it. To be fair I don’t think many were about in Alderley Edge full stop. The trendy bars at the posh end of town seemed a little bereft of folk as well.

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Undeterred we settled in. Our two young, enthusiastic  waitresses keeping us up to speed with developments. A rather palatable pale ale from Runaway Beers had me settled in no time. As with the standard Mughli, it’s a simple, plain white, single sided menu to choose from. Brilliant. Starters, nibbles, brunch, large plates and desserts all catered for. The Flame struggled a bit whilst I was struggling to keep my choice down to an amount that I could be cooked in time! I could have stuck a pin in blindfold.

I went for a few small plates whilst the Flame went for the salad. I say salad. It was a beetroot and avocado salad with garlic toasts and a cumin yoghurt dip (£8.50). It came stacked over the sliced beetroot with various drizzles. When pushed over it filled the plate with a glorious, fresh taste. My fork full came blessed with chilli and fresh coriander. An absolute delight. She had a side of gunpowder chips (£4.00), which came dusted in spice. Wonderful.

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Gunpowder Chips

I had chickpea fritters with chilli and coriander dip (£4.50). They came arranged like a ‘janga’ game. Stacked like sleepers. Looked good actually and tasted good with the dip. Loved them. I also went for the popcorn shrimp with a lime citrus dip (bit pricey at £8.50 perhaps?). Quite a big portion, but tasted fantastic. I preferred it with the aioli dip that came with the chips. I also had the special of the day, lamb chops with pickled onion (£6.50). Two charred but succulent chops. Very nice.

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Chops, Chickpea Fritters, Popcorn shrimp

I rounded off with a teeth ‘scratchingly’ sweet Mumbai Mess (£5.95). I should add that very sweet is good for me! It was basically an Eton Mess using a sensation, vanilla Chantilly cream. A brilliant but filling end.

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Beetroot and avocado salad, Mumbai mess

We both proclaimed we’d had a cracking Sunday lunch. Full of flavour and excitement. It came in at a weighty £47. The Flame was converted. Maybe I can get her to try the real Mughli? Watch this space……..

The Railway Café and Gin Bar
7 London Rd,
Alderley Edge SK9
01625 865865

http://www.alderleyginbar.com