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Gordo’s Food and Drink Round-up 22/07/2010

Waitrose, Boots, Black Truffles, Airport and the case of the disappearing fish and chips

Published on July 25th 2010.

Gordo’s Food and Drink Round-up 22/07/2010

Waitrose, Boots and Marks and Spencer
Gordo walked into Boots on Cross Street a couple of weeks ago for his monthly supply of Alka Selzer and was pleasantly surprised to find that Waitrose have taken over the food concession in there, a bright move as the previous offering was poor.

The Fat One can instantly recommend the Potato Dauphinoise, sticky, cheesy garlicky loveliness. Possible better chickens than M&S whilst the sandwiches at lunch are marginally better as well, except the Hoisin Duck Wrap which was horrific and should only be used to punish weirdo vegetarians with. Oh, and any employees of Creative Concern. Except the ladies over there who are delightful.


Couple of good shout outs for M&S whilst we are at it, the racks of Scottish lamb. Seal them in a frying pan with lots of salt and cracked black pepper, drop a load of rosemary on top then throw ‘em in a hot oven for exactly eight minutes, rest for five: result is rosy rounds of lambiness. Serve with the Waitrose Dauphinoise, M&S’s is bland. Green Beans.

M&S’s carrot and swede mash beats Gordo’s, which says something.

Very Smelly Epoisses

“One last thing; M&S need a pat on the back for stocking one of the world’s tastiest, whilst smelliest cheeses: Eppoisses. Try it if you are hard enough, this is a blinder.”

The Editor has done a review of Podium, the restaurant in the Hilton Hotel and scored it well (Click here). Gordo took a couple girlies in there the week before, one of them being the delightful Natasha Turkington from Real Radio, whose hobbies include picking up randoms in the queue for Easy Jet. It’s a long story.

What wasn’t as long was the Surf and Turf that we had as a main course. Lobster and fillet steak. For Gordo, this was a great substitute for being refused Natasha’s favours. Apparently, he can’t be described as ‘dead fit’ like the feller in the queue but that main course certainly could be. If it was capable of being snogged, Nats would have given it a right going over.

Gordo got treated to lunch by the lovely Nadine Callan at Manchester Airport. He didn’t think it was going to be a treat at first, as the Airport hasn’t excited Gordo in the past with its catering proposition but was well impressed with his fish and chips as well as the East European waitress who had legs longer than the Eiffel Tower.

You can tell Gordo is a professional food critic, trying Nadine’s Chilli, at the same time as staring at the waitress’s legs, Gordo’s comments were ‘bloody great this..’

"Gordo, take your eyes off her, the chilli’s come out of the kitchen cold”, says Nadine, eyes rolling round her head.

Get to the airport early if you are travelling, as well as hungry, you can get some good tuck at the level.

Livebait and possibly the most stupid PR agency in the country?
Livebait have been possibly the worst fish restaurant in the North. Both Gordo and Schofield have had shocking experiences there. The worst oysters and a fish lunch for six, at £600 or thereabouts, were diabolical.

However, the office received a call from Rebecca Douglas at Mortimer Chadwick Grey Public Relations. Of Leeds and London. But not Manchester. ‘Becca’ spoke to our Commercial Director, Helen ‘Rambo’ Ramsbottom, who likes her fish and chips.

“Hello, its ‘Becca’ here from a public relations agency with an awfully long name, but not from Manchester, we want to bring you fish and chips from a restaurant called Livebait, so you can see how great they are and how spot on their service is. How many people work there?”

“Twenty,” replies Rambo, salivating.

“Oooh, lovely Darling”, says Becks... sorry, ‘Becca’. “We will deliver them around twelve on Wednesday.”

Rambo gets the office excited. Gordo, longer in the tooth, goes out for lunch.

Coming back at twenty to two having had a good feast with Vaughan Allen from CityCo, Gordo noticed that most of the team are eating curries.

“What happened to the fish and chips?” enquires the fat one who had just had an excellent meal at Carluccios.

“We waited until ten past one, then phoned them”. Ooeer.

“Some cheeky fcuker called Toss from the PR company with the longest name in the world, but not from Manchester, said they had run out, but they were going to the Manchester Evening News on Friday, which is near to us, and if they have any left they will drop a few in,” explained an incandescent Rambo, in the Confidential kitchen warming up a ready meal.

Dear ‘Becca’ and Toss let Gordo give you some friendly Mancunian advice about Deadbaits kind offer on Friday? Stick them up yer county arses.

Black Truffles at San Carlo
Gordo gets gets an invite to San Carlo to have lunch with Marcello to try out the black truffle pasta which is on sale over the coming weeks, you can try it on risotto as well. Great stuff, if you haven’t had black truffles before, give them a go, delightful. You can see the shenanigans in Gordo’s amateur filming, click here.

Harvey Nichols Road Trip
Any excuse for the beautiful Jessica Lowe, PR gaffer at Harvey Nichols, to get close to Gordo.

“Eh, fatty”, says Jess, “How do you fancy an away day to London on Monday, eating, drinking and cavorting at Harvey Nichols Knightsbridge?”

“Not half,” replies Gordo.

Ten o’clock on the Monday finds Gordo on platform eight gripping a Starbucks coffee, which he was rather wishing was the fragrant Jessica when he saw her dress. Jessica is a proper Manchester PR girl. We shall be doing a full piece on the day later on, as it was aimed at showing the new products in the food hall this Xmas.

On the train were the media companies that matter in Manchester for food and booze; take note, Mortimer, Chadwick, Gray, the PR company from Leeds and London and not Manchester. The Manchester Evening News weren’t on it.

Again, Gordo is experimenting with his home movies, so take a look at them, one on the fifth floor in their fabulous bar, and one from the excellent Oxo Tower.

Happy trails


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41 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

NortherngeezerJuly 21st 2010.

Think the vid clips are a great idea, loved the waiter at An Carlo trying to open up the souffle, hehehe ;-)

John HarrisJuly 21st 2010.

Does anyone still go to Livebait?

AnonymousJuly 21st 2010.

Thank you, this has just made me laugh out loud on a very boring day! I love the piece about Livebait (Deadbait, brilliant), having followed them on Twitter during this 'PR' excercise this afternoon. Had the worst (and only the 2nd) case of food poisoning ever from this place a few years ago. So bad and so quick (oysters, I know you take a risk), that I was out cold on the beautiful tiled floor 10 minutes after coffee. That's about the only thing this place has going for it; situated in a great building. Yuk. Never been back since. As for Waitrose in Boots. Yey! About time, I lurve Waitrose. And if anyone's interested, which you probably are not, the 2nd case of the shits was aquired in another 'seafood' chain - Stockton Heath branch, now gone. Thank God

Betty Davis''s EyesJuly 21st 2010.

Gordo is on form! Thought this was a bit of a fluf piece till i got to Livebait. How stupid are these PR people? I bet they have charged a fortune. 'Lets give away fish and chips'. On the button there people, it must have taken six minutes to think that up. Then, mess that loonatic Gordo around. I can't stop laughing.

AnonymousJuly 21st 2010.

That's what I liked about this piece - if nothing else, the Livebait story was spontaneous as the fiasco only occured this afternoon - much better then some pieces that have clearly lingered in Gordo's memory for a wee while. Good writing! Still laughing

AvoJuly 21st 2010.

Gordo, we have got a terrace like that in Manchester and it's at The Lowry Hotel. Don't you remember sipping champagne on it on a balmy August evening prior to dining in the private room and then heading to Ithaca for champagne before the night descended into something a little less salubrious at the Circle Club?

GordoJuly 21st 2010.

Avo, certainly do, it was a great night that. I am going to see if we can do another.

AvoJuly 21st 2010.

Cheers for the invite Gordo. I'm free anytime ;)

Smyth HarperJuly 22nd 2010.

Gordo, funniest column for a long time.

Your 300 word treatise on how not to do PR is an absolute gem. I adore the idea of the confidential team scrabbling for the scraps from the MEN's table. That's set me up for the day...

Paul BocuseJuly 22nd 2010.

Rack of Lamb, £27 p/kg, wrapped with yet another plastic contraption. Only in Britain, quelle horreur!

Klaus Peter LumppJuly 22nd 2010.

Kaese in Plastik? Was'n Scheiss!

Ferran AdriaJuly 22nd 2010.

Waitrose? La puta madre!

GezzabelleJuly 22nd 2010.

Excellent Round-up. Have the PR company been in touch to grovel since things went crazy on Twitter? I love how Livebait always seem to f*ck up for Gordo and JoScho. They haven't got it right for at least 4 years.

Pulls dead fit randomsJuly 22nd 2010.

I'll take this one on the chin Gordo in return for this black truffle business! :)

In my defence it's not entirely a hobby (ish) and I was a bit drunk and he was DOUBLE FIT!

By a country mile the Podium meal knocked the socks off an meal I've had in years. David Gale is a culinary marvel to behold. Go down there and experience it first hand.

ElpollolocoJuly 22nd 2010.

Black truffles?......looks to me like a load of rubberneckers watching some fat bastard filming some poor waiter hammering away at a salt baked fishn sarcophagus. Anyways...it's all about the show at San Carlo's!!

Peter HarrisJuly 22nd 2010.

The Oxo Tower for long lunch on a lovely summer day - nothing like it. Great food and drink too.

AnonymousJuly 22nd 2010.

What with the Livebait PR disaster coming hot on the heels of the gaff by Obsidian's PR company,makes you wnder wy they bother. All publicity is good publicity? I don't think so

Paul MastersJuly 22nd 2010.

Jessica looks a treat

GordoJuly 22nd 2010.

Elpolloloco: *Yawn*

Foolish chickenJuly 22nd 2010.

That Elpolloloco is a right fool isn't he?

Caroline FaulknerJuly 22nd 2010.

I was really excited about Waitrose but the food is fairly bog standard - no game or more interesting wines like they have at the one in Cheadle Hulme.

AnonymousJuly 22nd 2010.

Can I give you a tip on your food photography? Don't use the flash. Makes it look awful!

NortherngeezerJuly 22nd 2010.

MR SCHOFIELD.................SEE, ITS NOT JUST ME ABOUT THE PHOTO'S!!!!...........i'll still go an see the doc tho ;-)

Christopher BryanJuly 22nd 2010.

Mention about the new Waitrose concession at Boots but not one noise made about the new Booths store opening at Salford Quays next year?

NortherngeezerJuly 22nd 2010.

CB - Next year yeah, i'm sure they'll do a big article on it..........NEXT YEAR!!!!.

Jonathan Schofield - editorJuly 22nd 2010.

There's a new Booth's opening in Salford Quays. We'll review. Isn't life interesting CB?

ManCon PR MouthpieceJuly 22nd 2010.

Can you drop more names in your next piece not nearly enough mentioned. Talking of food you know where your bread is buttered - Manc PR companies. So much sucking up made me almost throw up my dinner.

AnonymousJuly 22nd 2010.

Waitrose's Taiko Sushi is far better than M&S.
If you like Waitrose, you may try Ocado, also.

AvoJuly 22nd 2010.

If you're a Manc business why not use Manc PR companies? Surely they would have a lot more local market knowledge and and contacts than non local companies. Or am I just being parochial???

C 2 The GJuly 23rd 2010.

No Avo you're right but thats a little bit easy for some people.
PR Mouthpiece - thats the way Gordo writes!!

AnonymousJuly 23rd 2010.

Will Gordo be reviewing the Priory treatment to get over his current obsession with the girlies?

GordoJuly 23rd 2010.

Anonymous, what do you mean, current? Its been going on for thirty years

AnonymousJuly 23rd 2010.

Dear Gordo my apologies.. for "current" read "chronic" But I look forward to the review.

FlicJuly 23rd 2010.

Dear editor, please could you ask Hugh Hefner to do these reviews in future, as I am getting rather tired of the current reviewer's obsession with 'ladies', and feel that Mr Hefner would bring some much-needed gravitas to the section.
Many thanks.

GordoJuly 23rd 2010.

Dear editor, take no notice of Flic.

Christopher BryanJuly 23rd 2010.

it was only in reference to another high end supermarket.

Fair doos though.

AnonymousSeptember 1st 2010.

Can the PR agency of Livebait have a word with themselves please? I've had about 20-odd tweets over the last 24 hours asking me how much I wuld pay for cod & chips/lobster/crab blah, blah blah. Answer? Not a lot. There's tweeting and then there's too much tweeting.

Simon ManningSeptember 1st 2010.

Good to know I'm not the only one to get food poisoning at Livebait...

AnonymousSeptember 1st 2010.

@Livebait; No,I don't want to offer a price for your pan-fried smoked haddock with a free-range egg, parsley mash and mustard sauce. No chef in his right mind would pan-fry smoked haddock. Yuk

NortherngeezerSeptember 1st 2010.

Wont be long before Livebait are actually paying us to eat there.

AnonymousSeptember 1st 2010.

No more, no more Livebait! It's like Chinese water torture. Enough tweeting for today, get on with f*cking sorting your food out

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