Food: Almost Famous Opens, Great Northern, Deansgate, From Thurs 28 November
Trailer trash fries, slut sauce, crack wings, bollocks burger, tosspot tommy k and f*ck-off-would-ya chilli (only some off those are made-up). Yes the whole ‘dirty grub’ revolution started with the Almost Famous guys in Manchester, and before you know it, bosh, burgers are 'like literally amazing' and every single food vendor in the entire city has a signature burger on the menu. Everyone, everywhere, burgers.
Beaming reviews, queues around the block, foodies in awe, how had this happened? Well fantastic, juicy, best-in-the-business burgers for one. One thing these savvy anti-marketeers hadn’t accounted for though was fire. A big one. Black smoke too. Billowing from AF HQ on High St Northern Quarter. We were down there like a shot. The burger bubble burst.
A successful summer pop-up at Great Northern followed, they set up a self-deprecating temp menu in next door sister venue Luck, Lust, Liquor and Burn and even opened one in Liverpool. Now they’re back, bigger, bolder, bawdier and now all-inclusive. Yes anyone is welcome. Even the velours and baseball cappers. The sorry-you-don’t-quite-fit door policy has been abolished. They have a lot more space to fill you see.
Our Ed had a chat with boss Beau Myers.
Info on twitter @AlmostFamousMCR
Film: Class of ’92, Odeon (Trafford Centre, Preston, Warrington), Sun 1 Dec, 8pm
Quite why there are so few showtimes for this film around Manchester, even nationally, remains a mystery. One suspects with the DVD available on December 2, Christmas sales more than likely have something to do with it.
Still, this documentary is a guaranteed pleaser for even the most fair weather United fan (of which there tend to be a few). Charting the meteoric rise of six Manchester United yoofs and pals, you may have heard of them: Beckham, Scholes, Giggs, Neville x2 and Butt, the film (Gary Neville’s idea) follows their all-conquering progress through seven years culminating with United’s famous treble triumph season of ’99 topped off by a Champions League cherry on top.
With anecdotes from the players, including zipping Butt up in a kit bag and putting Scholes in a tumble dryer, the film also includes interviews with Eric Cantona, Zinedine Zidane, Danny Boyle, Stone Roses’ Mani and Tony Blair? Never one to jump on a bandwagon him. Noel Gallagher at No.10 anyone?
Selected cinemas on Dec 1. DVD released Dec 2.
Market: Foodie Friday at Stockport Market, Market Place, Stockport, Fri 29 Nov, 5pm – 9pm
You may or may not have noticed recently that Christmas is approaching. If you have not, then you’ve done terribly well. Teach me. You may also have spotted a couple of weeks ago that the whole of Manchester city centre was almost entirely replaced by market stalls encircled by a horde of people spilling mulled wine, chewing the hair from the back of each other’s heads and kneeing one another up the arse.
So if the word ‘market’ currently triggers a panic attack, you’d be forgiven. Still, what’s to stop you throwing off the shackles and spreading your wings. Stockport has a market you know. Every last Friday of each month is ‘Foodie Friday’, the aim of this which is to stop people jumping ship on Friday at 5pm like fleas from a cold, dead dog and delve into the loveliest part of Stockport (of which there are three) – Stockport’s Lord of the Pies will be joined by Big D’s BBQ Pork, El Kantina, Pizza Peddlers, Uprising Bakery, Cheesecake Charly and many more. There’ll also be live music, craft ale and cheese. Winner.
FREE. More info here.
Classical: Four Seasons by Candlelight, Bridgewater Hall, Sun 1 Dec, 3pm
First things first. Not a Pizza Quattro Stagioni by naked flame in a YAFI (Yet-Another-f*cking-Italian) restaurant. The Four Seasons, composed in 1723, is the masterpiece of Vivaldi, one of Baroque’s finest composers. The most lauded of his work, these four violin concertos conclude a costume set conducted by David Juritz and performed by the Mozart Festival Orchestra in full eighteenth century regalia. Wigs, neck ruffles, the full beans.
The concert shall include: Charpentier - Opening of the Te Deum, Albinoni - Adagio for Organ and Strings, Handel - Rejoice Greatly from Messiah, Eternal Source of Light Divine, Purcell - Trumpet Suite, Pachelbel - Canon, Mozart - Eine kleine Nachtmusik, Bach - Toccata and Fugue in D minor, Handel - Let the Bright Seraphim and finally Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons.
Tickets £12.50-£34.50. Tickets here.
Art: Coral: Something Rich and Strange, Manchester Museum, Fri 29 Nov – Sun 16 Mar
Rich and strange? Where do we start? Tom Cruise signed a one billion year pledge to Scientossergy, Richard Branson wears miniskirts, the Marquis of Bath boasts over 75 ‘wifelets’ (the old dog), Ex-presidential candidate Mitt Romney likes to tie dogs to the roof of his car, Vivienne Westwood likes to be pulled down the catwalk on a stretcher and the less said about Max Mosley the better.
Oh, wrong end of the stick.
This major new show attempts to juxtapose historic and contemporary art, new commissions and natural history specimens to explore the enduring fascination with coral (you know, from the sea) as a material and inspiration through cultures and creatives.
Natural history specimens from the Museum’s zoology collection, fossils, glass models of marine invertebrates, and scientific illustrations will be seen alongside cultural artefacts (charms, talismans, funerary objects, rosaries, netsuke and jewellery ‘curiosities’). Paintings, prints, textiles and objects from the collections of Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester Art Gallery and the V&A will also be on display alongside artworks from fifteen national and three international institutions.
Music: Will.I.Am, Phones 4u Arena, Tues 3 Dec, 6.30pm
Will.I.Am, Willy to pals, songwriter, DJ, producer, artist, designer, Cheryl Cole-maker, founding member of Black Eyes Peas and more widely known as ‘that American fella from The Voice with the dodgy clobber and barnet.’
Since chart dominating single Where Is The Love? was released back in 2003, William has managed to notch up no less than 30 top 40 entries in the UK singles chart, selling nearly ten million records in the UK alone. Good form.
Willy will be performing tracks from chart-topping album #willpower, including hits This Is Love, Scream & Shout and #thatPower. And let’s be honest, anyone who has hashtags in not only the album title, but also a hashtag single on the hashtag album much be #reallyrealllreallyace.
£27.50 - £35.00. Tickets here.
Exhibition: The Only Way Is Pemberley, Lyme Park, House and Garden, Cheshire, until Sun 3 Feb
When Colin Firth’s Mr Darcy emerged from Lyme Lake in the BBC’s ’95 adaption of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, knees went all weak. Having recently been unveiled in London’s Serpentine lake, a 12ft fibreglass effigy of Firth has made its way up to Lyme and now stands in the middle of the lake, looking all smouldering, troubled and wet.
This exhibition celebrates the 200th anniversary of Austen’s Pride and Prejudice with events held every weekend including Regency dress-up, artwork, rowing boats, a travelling exhibition on loan from the Austen Museum, horse carriage rides, guided walks around the estate and lots of Christmas hoo ha.
Theatre: That Day We Sang, Royal Exchange, Thurs 5 Dec - Sat 18 Jan
Comedian, Prestwichian and for want of a better expression, ‘national treasure’ (sigh), Victoria Wood’s play is a love story told against the background of The Wimpy, The Golden Egg and Piccadilly Gardens. In the summer of '69, insurance clerk Tubby and secretary Enid are back on stage at the Free Trade Hall. Granada Television are recording a documentary celebrating the forty years since they first stood there as children, singing their hearts out with fellow school pupils and accompanied by the Hallé Orchestra. This is the humorous, warm and uplifting story of two people who are trying to reconnect with who they were then and who they could be now.
Tickets £10 - £36. Book here.
Drink: Prohibtion Party, The Violet hour, Burton Road, Didsbury, Thurs 5 Dec
Imagine a world without booze: Productivity would skyrocket, the NHS would run smoothly and we'd all have plenty more money to spend on nice things like christmas coats for fluffy pets, food from Waitrose and god forbid, even our loved ones. Unthinkable of course.
So to celebrate eighty years since the repeal of the American Prohibition era, an era of which nobody took any notice anyway, Didsbury's trendiest drinking den, The Violet Hour, will turn 'speakeasy' with free shot secret passwords, flappers, gangsters (because everyone in the 20s was either one of these, have you even seen Gatsby gawd?) and a 20s style band called The Prohibition Swing Club. Oo'er.
The evening also coincides with West Didsbury's annual Christmas lights switch on taking place right in front of the bar at 6.30pm. Handy that.
Christmas: Victorian Christmas Market, Castlefield, until Sun 22 Dec, 10am - 8pm
All too often, these markets get fobbed off with this simple tagline: Arts, crafts, music, fashion and food. It’s boring, lazy, a cut and paste job that covers practically every market ever. So you’re not going to get fobbed off, you’re going to get an exhaustive and hefty list of everything we've seen there. Eh hem:
A lady reading tarot cards, craft beer, a War of the Worlds vinyl record, mulled wine, homemade goulash, vintage dresses for £10, pecan and parsnip cake, a man in a top hat, English lavender cushions, Greek gyros, an old withered wooden mirror, pie and custard, sport bags from the 1982 World Fair, cheese and crackers, craft cider, china teapots and crockery, cherry liquor served in mini chocolate cups, glass tankards, real fur coats for £70, Christmas stockings, personalised stitched pillows, ham and cheese crepes, gold photo frames, trilby hats, Black Cat coffee, curd, cake stands, tweed jackets, a Fanny Bramble cocktail, a bird cage, sheepskin coats, handmade greetings cards, knitted babywear, homemade Cantonese sweet chilli fish sauce, leather boots, silk scarves, framed photography and artwork, recycled nomadic rugs, feather boas and more old jewellery and trinkets than you’d find at my Granny Pegs.
There you go.
Open seven days a week from 10am - 8pm. On the corner of Liverpool Road and Deansgate.
Victorian Christmas Market
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