The Northern Quarter's not short of decent places to eat, from brilliant burger joints and quaint little cafés with excellent afternoon teas to swisher spots where it's easy to splash the cash. The variety is impressive too, so whether you fancy Vietnamese, burritos, a bit of 'rice and three', light bites or luxury chocolate, it's pretty easy to have your palate pleased. Make sure you check out the Northern Quarter bars, too - they're every bit as good as the restaurants.
Restaurants in the Northern Quarter
Located in Manchester's creative core, the Northern Quarter, Home Sweet Home is decked out in the familiar quaint wooden furniture and lovely bric-a-brac that so defines neighbourly establishments. The staff are so painfully friendly that you’ll want to pull up a chair as an invitation.
Located within Manchester’s Craft and Design Centre (a hub where creatives sell handmade products), this café’s existence is only hinted at by an unassuming board sitting outside, but the mystery it beholds is sufficient to knock you off your feet. Aside from the staples of soups, toasties, quiches, frittatas, salads and stews, chef Liz Kine’s specials change daily depending on what local produce she sources that day, supporting local businesses such as Unicorn (a co-operative grocery), Barbakan Deli and Marble Beers.
Like the personal sampling room Willy Wonka forgot to build, chocolate haven Bonbon has very quickly been taken under the Northern Quarter’s wing. Serving up a heady mix of chocolates, coffee and luxury, Bonbon is a joint venture between Teacup (located just down the street) and Joey Collins of Troffel, who have given the place a boutique feel with dark wooden furniture and curious paper bag lamps.
Eating at Kabana is a euphoric experience. Specifically, eating Kabana's nehari stew on a Sunday lunchtime after a late Saturday is a euphoric experience, but we'll get to that later. Stepping inside, Kabana's interior is similar to many of the Northern Quarter's 'rice and three' establishments, with canteen-style seating and walls covered in framed pictures of footballers.
Brought to you by the folks behind Almost Famous is this contemporary Tex-Mex restaurant. Located in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, this is Manchester’s premier spot for beer, tacos, burgers, burritos, beer, steaks, chilli, cocktails, fries, sides, desserts and even more beer. It's not just the menu that’s inspired by a road trip from Vegas to Mexico – the interior is, too. From neon wall lights, bold artwork and mini cacti to tacos served on Californian licence plates, the Cali-fusion is deployed anything but subtly.
Located in the thick of the Northern Quarter’s creative boom, North Tea Power brings together casual chic with a raucous attitude to both food and drink. As you might expect, there’s an intimidating array of loose-leaf teas, with an illuminating coffee menu stacked with guest espressos and seasonal offerings, like Deerhunter’s Ethiopian and Costa Rican blend, which is a steal at £2-£3.
Manchester's Northern Quarter isn't short on quirk, both in its venues and those who frequent them, but Sugar Junction's attention to detail has to be applauded. Antique furniture and delicate ornaments surprise from every corner; the perimeters of old-timey wallpaper and exposed brickwork encasing you in a bygone era. Afternoon tea is what they do best, with an impressive collection of custom loose-leaf tea blends (25 of them) including combinations you never thought existed.
Established by Manchester's very own Mr Scruff, whose love of tea is as strong as his love of music (if not stronger), Teacup is a place where you’ll not only find all manner of tea varieties, but an extensive cake menu, cocktails, wines and beers, plus a full lunch and evening meal menu, too.
The latest addition to Arndale's food market, Viet Shack has caused quite a stir, offering self-styled Vietnamese street food with a modern twist. With counter service and seating shared with the rest of the market's customers, it's set up perfectly for a quick, cheap lunch. That said, this isn't food that you'll necessarily want to rush.