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Food and Drink Round-up 23/02/2010

New city chippy, Teacup produces, Vermilion gets mums excited and Veg Soc events

Published on February 22nd 2010.

Food and Drink Round-up 23/02/2010

New city chippy
We have a new city centre chippy. This is in the Printworks and is called Dockers (07722906925). Confidential visited it and can recommend it for the quality of the chips, the good fish (cod on this occasion – but please Dockers reduce the heaviness of the batter), a fine rag pudding and a disturbing looking sausage. The parent shop is in Prestwich. Apparently staff bring the rag puddings down on the tram to nearby Victoria Station, concealing them in special pockets. Ok that's not true, but if a chippy is your thing then this is the best in this part of Manchester by a mile. We recommend you eat the chips on a bench outside the Printworks because Dockers is frankly a bit pokey on the inside.

Chips for all
The new chippy made us ponder on the largely crap chippies of the region. What happened to the great Lancashire chippy? What we need in Manchester is a chippy that fries with dripping. That's the only way for us all to fall in love again with the chippy – well aside from veggies. I love Docker's hand-reared, tickled out of the ground, Cheshire Massey potatoes but they would be better in dripping. As for other city centre chippies we recommend Lloyds on Lloyd Street, The Hut on Liverpool Road and Kingfisher on Tib Street. None of them are as good as the Tyke chippy recently visited in Hebden Bridge though which does it - you guessed - in dripping.

The Printworks' volte face
Having Dockers in the Printworks underlines how the latter behemoth has now seen the light with local independents. The Printworks has Papa G's, Wasabi and now Dockers. It's a start and already making the place feel more distinctive.

Sad news from the north
The Three Arrows close to Heaton Park has gone dark. This was a fine food pub for the area. It cared about what it served and did a sound creative take on British basics. So why tell us now we hear you ask? Well the man running Dockers is Stuart Norman who was the chef at the Three Arrows. When the chips are down........

You can take the girl out of Glasgow but...
Confidential's editor, Jonathan Schofield, took nine delightful ladies from Glasgow out on Saturday showing off the city for the Lowry Hotel. They had refreshments in Teacup, on Thomas Street. Some had tea, some had coffee, others had hot chocolate. One of the younger members of the group asked for Irn Bru - the famous Glaswegian 'pop'. Bless her. Teacup doesn't have it. And then being that sort of place it didn't have Coca Cola either. Despite the offer of organic dandelion and burdock our Scottish friend settled on orange juice. Teacup incidentally was rocking, full of happy Northern Quarter types, munching on cup cakes and enjoying the really excellent teas. It was all very lovely. We may review this place next week, see if they've sorted their slow service issues. No probs with that on Saturday though.

Vermilion’s parent companyThe parent being your mum. The fancy dan Newton Heath Restaurant (Hulme Hall Lane, M40 8AD, 0161 202 0055) has loads of Mother's Day packages. There's a buffet including over 35 different dishes at £14.90 per person. Forget that though, what you really should consider is the luxury offer for £56 per person in the evening. This includes a three course meal, 'welcome flowers to make her smile', champagne cocktail on arrival, chocolate truffles at the table, live pianist and singer throughout the evening and finally a professional photographer 'to record all those happy, touching and beautiful moments, which we will frame and post to you'. Crikey.

Forget chippies and dripping here come the Greens
There are loads of events coming up at the Vegetarian Society. Here are but two at their Cordon Vert school in Altrincham (0161 925 2014). There's Kids in the Kitchen in March: 'accompanied by a parent, kids will design their own pizza with a selection of tasty toppings, create a mouth watering pasta dish and make a fantastic veggie breakfast, and learn all about the magic behind the Knickerbocker Glory'. The day concludes with a picnic in the grounds of Parkdale (weather permitting of course), the Veg Soc premises. Fun starts at 9am, with lunch at 1.30pm on 25 March. £60. Then there's the Seasonal, Sensational and Sustainable Workshop - which is easy for them to say. This focuses on seasonal foods, surprise, surprise. Once the workshop is over and dining has commenced you're 'rewarded' with a glass of English white wine. 5th March. £108.

Reader gets his claws out
We had this from a trusted reader: 'The Cat and Fiddle Inn is an iconic pub with a rich history situated in one of the most beautiful parts of the North West of England in the Cheshire Peaks. So it is with heavy heart that I feel duty bound to report a most unpleasant meal at this pub (15 Feb 2010). The chips weren't properly cooked - some of them contained raw potato, the peas were stewed and cool, the fish oozed with grease when I cut it and my son's fish cake tasted of - well I'm not sure. In short it was inedible and we hardly touched any of it.' Has anybody else had similar experiences or is the reader talking through his jacksie? The Cat and Fiddle is that pub where motorbikers gather before speeding across the moors and crashing against dry stone walls.

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MaddieFebruary 24th 2010.

I went to the Cat and Fiddle once but left disappointed as they didn't have cheesy chips on the menu.

NortherngeezerFebruary 25th 2010.

Much as it pains me to say it as a true Lancastrian, the best chippys are t'other side of them thar hills in yorkyshyre, where they still cook there fayre in beef dripping, where the batter on the fish is of just the right consistency to hold the firm moist cod together.............FFS, i'm drooling!!!!.

Lord of the PiesFebruary 25th 2010.

Burger me, I had fish & chips yesterday from that place on Lloyd street. It was bloomin lovely.

Paul RogersFebruary 26th 2010.

You're having a laugh! The best chippies are still in south/east Lancashire. You can't call it a chippy if it doesn't sell pies (and tyke chippies generally don't) and only Baxenden's finest (Holland's Pies for the weak of geography) will do I'm afraid!

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