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MCR Has World's Most Expensive Veggie Menu (Probably)

MCR House & Aiden Byrne paint the town £95 green for the meat-free

Written by . Published on September 23rd 2013.

MCR Has World's Most Expensive Veggie Menu (Probably)

THIS is an opportunity for vegetarians to put their money where their mouth is.

Their cash where their principles lounge. 

Manchester House, the fine-dining new kid on the block from Aiden Byrne and Living Ventures, has revealed to Confidential its new vegetarian tasting menu.

This is priced £95 and has twelve courses. Ninety-five pounds. This is the same price as the meat menu.

Do vegetarians want to be part of the fine dining scene? Will they pay for fine dining? Yes of course they will, vegetarians aren't hair-shirted puritans, zeolots, or religious purists. Mostly anyway.

Equality at last for vegetarians - although they might think that given the price of meat they should get a cheaper option. But should they? 

Confidential supposes that Byrne would say the processes, techniques and skills are no less important in a veggie fine dining experience than in the meaty one so an equivalant price is perfectly correct. 

Aiden Bryne in meat mode


Aiden Byrne in meat mode

There will, of course, be loads of veggie choice on the a la carte menu too, so it's not the tasting menu or nothing.

What Byrne's tasting menu does though is throw a gauntlet thrown down to vegetarians across the region. Do vegetarians want to be part of the fine dining scene? Will they pay?

Confidential thinks the answer will be yes. Vegetarians are mostly not hair-shirted puritans, zeolots, or religious purists. They want choice and excellence as much as the omnivores.

The rants on Confidential following the announcement of the Manchester House menu prove that many a vegetarian would love to sample what a top chef can deliver - even at a price.

Anyway, here's that tasting menu in full.  


Chilled broad bean soup


Fresh almonds, piquillo peppers and capers and nasturtium


Warm garlic potato mousse


Cobnut risotto, smoked apples and Parmesan


Beetroot mousse, baked beetroot salad with orange and fennel


Heritage carrot salad, white carrot mousse and Nocerella olives


Pea consommé, pea butter and warm brioche


Potato and violet artichoke salad


Roasted cauliflower custard, truffle linguini, cepes and buckler sorrel


Beetroot gazpacho with avocado and lime sorbet


Roasted salsify, grilled oyster mushroom, potato gnocchi and pickled girolles


Granny Smith with maple cream

Restaurant Opening Times: Tuesday–Thursday, lunch noon-2.30pm, dinner 7pm-9.30pm; Friday-Saturday, lunch noon-2.30pm, dinner 6pm–10pm

Lounge Opening Times: Monday–Sunday noon – late

There's no dress code at Manchester House but private dining and a chef’s table can be arranged. Manchester House is at Tower 12, 18-22 Bridge Street, Spinningfields, City centre, M3 3BZ. 0161 835 255.

Manchester HouseManchester House

Vegetarians can eat like kings at the top tableVegetarians can eat like kings at the top table

You can follow Jonathan Schofield on Twitter here @JonathSchofield or connect via Google+

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

ChorltongalSeptember 23rd 2013.

Hate to be the first to weigh-in but 4th course Parmesan isn't veggie as it contains calf rennet...

1 Response: Reply To This...
JaySeptember 24th 2013.

Could be veggie parmesan

ChorltongalSeptember 23rd 2013.

But on a positive note, it looks lovely!

Jon JonesSeptember 23rd 2013.

What a rip off!

Jon JonesSeptember 23rd 2013.

Continuing from above.... Im not sure id pay that for a veggie menu. Crazy money! who in their right mind would pay it? Im a massive fan of Aidens but seriously? I know they need to make back the billions theyve spent on plates & equipment but bloody hell!

AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

Granted the skills and techniques are the same (why wouldn’t they be). But to charge the same price for a meat dish as you would a vegetable dish seems nonsensical and unjustifiable (in my opinion). Or as my wife just said “effing piss take to veggies, I’d rather cook myself”. Good shout with the Parmesan spot. Someone will get this veggie lark right one day I’m sure.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

OK so the meat menu ingreadients might cost £10 less maximum but the staff the set up the £3m refurb you get to enjoy all of that just the same so should vegies realy expect to pay that mch less? Not only that but vegies are always saying you can do fine veggie dining now somone has they shouldn't start carping about paying the same as the rest of us for their tea.

AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

I think youd have something to say if your spuds cost as much as your steak...regardless of the fine dining experience.

AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

Could they rise to the challenge of a Vegan menu I wonder?

1 Response: Reply To This...
Henry VFebruary 17th 2014.

would anyone want to?

AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

Personally I'd need to hear that it was without doubt the most amazing veggie tasting menu anyone has had in the UK recently... before paying ... well £190 (plus drinks on top?) for a vegetarian dinner (for two!) bonkers!

3 Responses: Reply To This...
IanSeptember 23rd 2013.

And add service on top.

LVCDGSeptember 23rd 2013.

There's no service charge

Henry VFebruary 17th 2014.

well, you can always bugger off over to On The Eighth Day and spend sixpence with some nice worthy people.

AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

You can get vegetarian Parmesan..not authentically reggiano but would have thought that's what their using. I think it's more about having the option..if the quality and techniques are there then the price is fair..meat or no meat. The cost of these menus includes so much more than the raw ingredients (which you won't find in your local supermarket btw) It's the costs associated from inception to delivery and everything in between.

Jonathan SchofieldSeptember 23rd 2013.

The cheese is vegetarian although that for the meat eaters isn't.

GordoSeptember 23rd 2013.

Don't listen to these pale, ill-looking whingers Aiden, tan their arses...

PryonicSeptember 23rd 2013.

It is starting to sound like some veggies just want to whinge. First they complain there was no veggie menu, and now there is it's too expensive or it's wrong as they still serve meat and meat based products. The 8th Day Cafe is still open for all your vegan needs - I'm off to find a rare steak somewhere!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousSeptember 24th 2013.

So true...

AnonymousSeptember 24th 2013.

Spot on Pryonic. Complain that places don't have enough veggie options. Rogan devotes a decent chunk of his new menu to veggie dishes. Complain that it's still not enough. Byrne puts on a veggie tasting menu. Complain that it's too expensive etc etc. Ad nauseum.

Flick7838September 23rd 2013.

Bit disappointing when you compare it with the imaginative combinations, textures and flavours found at Terre a Terre in Brighton at a fraction of the price.

AnonymousSeptember 23rd 2013.

How can you say something is disappointing simply by looking at a brief description of the menu...do you really think 'chilled broad bean soup' is just chilled broad beans...look at the chef's cv and reputation - every dish will be well developed and conceived and while may not appeal to mass diners will be of exceptional skill and quality

1 Response: Reply To This...
Flick7838September 24th 2013.

I can see (I think) that there is a focus on local and seasonal food, which is great, but the menu didn't seem very exciting. Also, I would like to try some of the other offerings from a very prestigious chef, I agree. Pity I can't afford to taste any of it though!

AnonymousSeptember 24th 2013.

Most of the ingredients are grown in community allotments or gardens or foraged from the great outdoors. Parmesan isn't vegetarian and why promote such an event in the midst of a world food crisis?!

1 Response: Reply To This...
AndrewSeptember 24th 2013.

Are you for real? Really? Are you genuinely being serious? Have you cut down portion size? what are you doing so solve the "crisis".... Words fail me.

AndrewSeptember 24th 2013.

I have said this before and I will say it again. Yes it is expensive, but if the price isn't for you, then simply do not go or you could just whine about it on MC. "Who would have thought it, a businessman/chef wanting to make a profit".......

AnonymousSeptember 24th 2013.

As a vegetarian I've never actually had a problem in fine-dining restaurants - even a two-starred michelin restaurant in London produced a tasting menu for me and found wines to match. I'm now pregnant (so even more ingredients are 'off the menu') and it still wasn't a problem the last time I ate at a fine dining restaurant. In my experience they are always happy for the challenge.

John GordonSeptember 24th 2013.

I really don't see what there is to complain about. I'm not exactly rolling in money but this seems pretty reasonable to me. Genuinely puzzled by the negativity.

AnonymousSeptember 24th 2013.

Wish him luck....How this city has CHANGED in the last 20 years!!(??)

Poster BoySeptember 25th 2013.

Credit, where credit is due.

AnonymousMay 2nd 2014.

I'm vegetarian and pleased to say I've had incredible tasting menus at some of the best restaurants in the UK including The Fat Duck, L'enclume, and Le Manoir. They are worth every penny when you think about the processes involved and the time spent preparing the food. Anyone who understands food well would not be questioning it and getting hung up on the cost of the raw ingredients. I can't wait to check out Manchester House!

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