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The Credit Munch: What's Cooking?

Time to tighten your belt? No way! Not in our occasional series that brings you news of sweet deals that we've tried out to beat the credit crunch. This time: What's Cooking? Mondays

Published on January 27th 2009.

The Credit Munch: What's Cooking?

The Economy: How about 44 percent off the price of a lipsmackingly fresh burger and all the trimmings on Monday nights? How come: We're going back to the 1980s of course.

In Real Terms: This means a 2009 Alistair Darling quarter pounder, which normally weighs in at £7.50, becomes a 1985 Nigel Lawson mouthful, costing just £4.25 for the whole evening.

Meanwhile, a massive a half-pounder is down from £8.50 to just £5.25. The only generous figure that Nige was known for, as chancellor, was his own, but while costs of food have ballooned and Nigel has slimmed, What's Cooking? spins all that right round, like a record baby.

The interest rate: This is set to go much higher. Not only do you enjoy 1980s menu items (many of which, like prawn cocktail - £3.20 – have disappeared from today's menu) but you also get to hear, all night, 1980s music and videos transmitted in each warm leatherette booth to go with it. Whitney, Haircut 100, Blondie, Run DMC, and more on the hitlist as you tuck into your bowl of chilli and nachos. They have a DJ who takes requests, later on, but ring to check he's there before you don your Dandy Highwayman warpaint.

Liabilities: Beware if you don't like Duran Duran for along with sailor collars , padded shoulders leather pants and impossible flicks, comes the memory of Princess Di's love for the band as Her Name is Rio serenades you. Princess Diana would have loved Monday night in here. Well maybe not. Those half-pound burgers are, after all, monsters - but one's loo is pretty close by.

The futures market: This is an ongoing offer. Can we expect 2008 prices in 2040 with muzak by the Ting Tings? Mixed feelings about that.

Profit and loss statement: A juicy and very tasty quarter pounder Florentine burger, dressed with green peppers, onions and stacks of swiss cheese was worth every penny. Both it and the half-pound Left Bank burger (“a taste of Montmartre”, and which has disappeared off today's menu) with its thick slice of grilled bacon and melty cheese, came with stacks of ok fries and a retro side salad which was lightly dressed in tart vinaigrette (from a choice of several dressings). There's also a big selection of relishes to dip into.

Raw materials: Plenty, we were surprised and glad to report. The meat, they say, is from hand-reared, grass fed and fully traceable stock, and the burgers themselves were big, meaty and constructed with what tasted like spankingly fresh ingredients in the kitchen. Sounds obvious, but we've just been testing burgers around Merseyside fast food joints and this was a cut above the miserable industrial rubber specimens to be exposed shortly.

The acid test: All that toe-tapping and gyrating could give you indigestion. Shouldn't that be Aceeed! Aceed? Meanwhile, Boy George warbles: “Give me time, to realise my crime ....” Be careful what you wish for, George.

Liquidity: Unfortunately the beverages aren't part of the 80s deal. But you can still pick up a bottle of something reasonable on the wine list where everything is between £12-£17. If you are old enough.

Credit Score: For the bargain-hunter burger craver, What's Cooking? 1980s Monday a tangible asset.

Black Monday? Not at all. Just New Order's Blue Monday bouncing off the walls.

What's Cooking?
Queen Elizabeth Hall,
24 Britannia Pavillion,
Albert Dock,
L3 4AD.
0151-707 2023

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