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New Menu For All Star Lanes

We feast on Deep South-inspired dishes and warm cherry pie

Published on November 4th 2014.

New Menu For All Star Lanes


MANCHESTER’S retro bowling alley, All Star Lanes in the Great Northern, has got a new menu drawing on the flavours of America’s Deep South. Long-term Manchester-based chef Ashley Clarke, formerly of Panacea in Alderley Edge, is at the helm and he’s whipped up a host of spicy dishes to try, created using mostly local ingredients.

Cherry pie, baked to order with vanilla ice cream and toasted almonds is new for dessert, just in time for the return of Twin Peaks.

All Star Lanes opened back in 2012 in a whirl of polished chrome and quiffs. Boasting a bourbon selection to make Bill Murray weep, Manchester’s glitziest alley is one of just five in the UK – and the only one outside of London.

ASL8_ImgLanes are, in part, modelled on those built under the White House in 1947. The restaurant and bar, meanwhile, inspired by movies like Pulp Fiction and Grease, are decked in check tiles, chrome and nail lacquer red with plenty of booths in which to chill with the gang. The venue also boasts its own jungle-themed private bowling room, complete with lanes, karaoke and bar, and perfect for parties of up to 100 guests. It’s a step up from your average alley.

Ahead of the party season, the menu has been tweaked to include Deep South favourites and something different from neighbouring Mexican restaurant Lucha Libre and burger bar, Almost Famous.

Fans will be pleased that favourites from the Italian and burger schools of cuisine are still a lure – Beef and veal rigatoni (£12) for example, or the famous King Pin burger complete with mac n cheese croquette (£11) – alongside new arrivals like Crispy king prawn tacos (£7).

ASL9_ImgPulled salt beef croquettes (£6.50) and Popcorn squid (£6.50, served in a New York-style takeaway box) remain a draw while mains now include a well executed Caesar salad with chicken (£6.50 / £10.50) and a sustainable and impressively spiced Cajun swordfish with crushed potatoes, roast cherry tomatoes and green beans (£14.50).

Burger-wise, Buttermilk fried chicken (£8.50) and ‘the King Pin’ (“aka the most food you can fit in your mouth”, says manager Iain Gray) are joined by a Nacho burger (literally, nachos meets burger in brioche, £9.50) and a Chicken parmigiana burger (£8.50, grilled chicken breast, marinara sauce, buffalo mozzarella and fresh basil).

Sides are usually worth it too; Truffled mac and cheese (£4.50) is a winner, while love ‘em or loathe ‘em Monterey Jack grits chips (£3) are a conversation starter to say the least.

ASL10_ImgCherry pie, baked to order with vanilla ice cream and toasted almonds (£6) is new for dessert, just in time for the return of Twin Peaks and its pie-lovin’ detectives. We tried the chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwich (£5.50) too, which was widely regarded as an improvement on Ben and Jerry’s Cookie Dough.

All Star Lanes are doing things by the book as far as local suppliers are concerned. Meat suppliers are local, veg comes from Noone’s and key staff include chef Clarke and Iain Gray, formerly AGM at Room.

The only hiccup was a couple of zealously zingy new cocktails Caipriamble (£7, Finlandia, fresh grapefruit and lime, muddled with sugar) and Jumpin' Jack Flash (£7.50, Jack Daniels, lime liqueur, agave syrup, lemon juice and raspberry puree). Classics like the Mint Julep and Old Fashioned (both £8) offer a smoother ride and there are plenty more where these came from.

All Star Lanes, The Great Northern, 235 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4EN. 0161 871 3600. www.allstarlanes.co.uk







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