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New Vietnamese Restaurant And The Smallest Coffee Shop In A Shed Anywhere

Sleuth Wk 10: love, purity, irony, absurdity, anger and fun

Written by . Published on March 7th 2014.

New Vietnamese Restaurant And The Smallest Coffee Shop In A Shed Anywhere

SleuthSleuthSleuth is a sideways glance at the city every week, it's the truth, but Sleuth's truth. He's several people all at once. We give £25 for every story/rumour and piece of absurdity you find for us to publish. Sleuth sometimes even gets serious. We ask for the money back if any legal action follows. Follow Sleuth on twitter @mcrsleuth

Saigon Lotus Blossoms In Ancoats

It used to be Little Italy now it's becoming Little Vietnam. There's a deli, there's the excellent Vnam and now there's Siagon Lotus. The new Manchester restaurant should open tonight (Friday 7 March). The menu looks lovely, even if the range of shops in which the new place will be located look anything but lovely. Still, the menu with its broths, vermicellis, rolls and tempters such as de xao ian - 'goats meat stir fried with garlic and shallots' reads beautifully. Sleuth wants to go and eat there now, he's dribbling. 

Saigon Lotus - lovely grub, we hope

Saigon Lotus - lovely grub, we hope

What Liverpool Does Yesterday, Manchester Does Tomorrow

Manchester's Liberal Democrats think Manchester should apply for European Capital of Culture in 2023. They are putting forward a motion calling for Manchester to bid for the title to help create jobs, investment and regeneration. When it was held in Liverpool in 2008, 'the city saw a £753.8m boost to the local economy, millions of visitors and people's perceptions of the city transformed'.

Sleuth doesn't think this is a bad idea but doesn't think it has a cat in hell's chance of being approved. Labour councillors outnumber those of the Liberals by at least seven to one and the two parties don't get on in Manchester. In fact, Sleuth would rather have some unfashionable backwater get the accolade: what about Rochdale, Grimsby, Burnley? They'd have much more to gain, and isn't Manchester International Festival all about changing perceptions? And what perceptions do we need to change anyway?

Burnley - Capital of Culture 2023?


Burnley - Capital of Culture 2023?

Sleuth Is Head Over Heels With A Coffee Shed

It's petite not smallIt's petite not smallSleuth is head over heels for this new venture called Grindsmith by Luke Tomlinson and his mate. It's a lively slice of entrepreneurship that helps deliver Salford Council's plan to bring life to Greengate Square. The java is from Coffee Circle and very smooth, the design of lovely shed is by Green Retreats. Inside the shed fits about five people but would probably be too tidsy to host this summer's International Cat Swinging Championships. That said, it's excellent, a blast of caffeine joy, and given that it's going be there for three years, bound to come into its own on summer days. It has a very big terrace and with the fountains close by it benefits from a pleasant cooling shower system should you choose to cycle or jog there. 

 Grindsmith - coffee in a shed

Grindsmith - coffee in a shed

Sleuth And Meditation

Sleuth's colleague L'Oreal Blackett, the world's most fidgety twenty-something, attempted meditation this week and after long moments of anguish managed to calm down - a bit. Another colleague, Sarah, recalled a time when she worked in Manchester City Council and a note was circulated stating that people who'd fallen asleep at their desks couldn't claim they were meditating, to prevent this nobody was allowed to have their eyes closed for longer than five seconds. Sarah told L'Oreal this but unfortunately L'Oreal was snoring face down on her keyboard.  

This man is working hard


This man is working hard

The Art Of Name Making

The editor attended a CityCo (Manchester's city centre management company) discussion this week called 'The Art of Place Making' about how cities can make their streets and squares work effectively. Jessica Swettenham was there from Place North West property magazine. Having a chat afterwards she said how she'd interviewed a Manchester architectural practice this week called Sixtwo. "Interesting name," observed the editor, "So what marketing wizardry lies behind that title?" "Er... it's because they're all quite tall, six foot two at least," said Jessica.

Man on the left in the hi-vis jacket is from Six two and is on a recruitment drive for people of the right height at the Deansgaate/Castlefield Metrolink station

The man on the right in the hi-vis jacket is from Sixtwo and is on a recruitment drive for people of satisfying vertical dimensions at the Deansgate/Castlefield Metrolink station

ICFT And More Marketing Wizardry

Sixtwo reminded Sleuth of when he was leading a Chinatown tour before Christmas and the group visited the Taiwanese bubble tea shop on George Street. The manager told guests when asked about the name: "ICFT is very simple. It means I Come From Taiwan". Sleuth likes all this and is desirous of more autobiographical business titles. For instance Gordo, the Confidential food writer, could set up shop as ICFSASMF - I Come From Salford And Stuff My Face. Charles Dickens and Margaret Thatcher could start a joint venture called WWSABIWWD - We Would Start A Business If We Weren't Dead.

Sleuth’s Rant Of The Week

This was a rant feed on Confidential on the article asking for questions from readers for Sir Howard Bernstein - click here.

'What steps are the council taking to re-balance the demographic of the city centre resident population away from students and younger short term lets to include families and older people?' wrote the first ranter.

'That's what we have Chorlton for,' wrote the next. 

Sleuth's Council Cuts Of The Week

Sleuth is worried Manchester's council cuts are really starting to bite. That new official vehicle for the Lord Mayor looks a bit 'too' traditional. 

Lord Mayor's new vehicle neatly parked behind the lifty thing

Lord Mayor's new vehicle neatly parked behind the lifty thing

Sleuth And The Moston Disgrace

Every seven days or so Sleuth is stopped in the street by policemen, concierges, Vietnamese restaurateurs, Liberal Democrat councillors, people from Rochdale, Grimsby and Burnley, tall architects, meditating writers, people from Taiwan and all the ranters in Manchester and asked: "Where can we find the most demoralising wreck of a late medieval house in Manchester that needs to be preserved but has been left to moulder and die?"

"Why," says Sleuth, "that would be Hough Hall in Moston that really should be a focal point of the suburb. Instead it's a disgrace. The owner needs to be publicly flogged."

And to prove this he showed the policemen, concierges, Vietnamese restaurateurs, Liberal Democrat councillors, people from Rochdale, Grimsby and Burnley, tall architects, meditating writers, people from Taiwan and all the ranters in Manchester, these pictures.

Nobody seems to give a damn about that sign

Nobody seems to give a damn about that plaque

A right proper disgrace

A right proper disgrace

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

AVOMarch 7th 2014.

So, no dog on the Vietnamese menu then?

3 Responses: Reply To This...
Mr BaskervilleMarch 7th 2014.

There may be specials

Chris HawkeMarch 9th 2014.

Don't be silly. I will say I really liked Saigon Lotus' predecessor Ha Noi Quan because its stronger flavors (stock-ier than Vnam). If they can follow those footsteps I'll be happy.

KinMarch 10th 2014.

No Avo, you get boiled ham and spuds for being a dick!

ShybaldbuddhistMarch 7th 2014.

I don't know of Hough Hall in Moston but it's a disgrace buildings like this are left to rot. It must be within our interests to preserve these things?

DavidMarch 7th 2014.

Bidding for the Olympics was not the idea of the Labour leadership either,it was Bob Scott's idea,as was bidding for the Commonwealth Games later.Does the writer think that was a mistake also?.He clearly has issues with the Lib Dems. Manchester should bid to be European City of Culture and it does not matter whose original idea it was.The city needs to rediscover the ambition it had in the early 1990s when we had leaders who dared to dream.

Tony DoyleMarch 10th 2014.

How can this fine Hall be left to rot,we nearly did the same in Ordsall.....

3 Responses: Reply To This...
Tony DoyleMarch 10th 2014.

where are the online petitions ala The Dispencery in Ancoats?(equally worth saving may I add...)

Tony DoyleMarch 10th 2014.


GimboidMarch 10th 2014.

Online petition? On the internet you mean? If only there was a way to search for things on the internet. lmgtfy.com/…

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