Food Wars: North vs South 

As a proud Northerner I do like to share the foodie delights of the North as much as possible, despite being South for so long (nearing five years now, can you even believe it?!). Over the past couple of months, I’ve had a few tasty treats in places up North and down here in London, so let the foodie battle begin!

Up North

Gusto 

You can’t really go wrong with a cheeky Italian. We hit up the Heswall branch for some delicious eats to celebrate some birthdays! Plenty to choose from across a range of appetizers, pasta, pizza and meat/fish dishes too. We started with a couple of sharer boards and mains we all opted for pasta; the classic carbonara, which did prove a little too samey for us, a delicious Rigatoni with smoked salmon and peas and finally, a fancy crab pasta dish with chilli and garlic. Full tummies all round until the dessert menu came out and my sweet toothed gals dived into puddings. Get there before 7pm for 241 cocktails and £20 bottles of prosecco.

Another Heart to Feed 

Take the tram from Manchester City Centre out to West Didsbury and you can find this cute little brunch & coffee shop. Delicious avo and eggs with a side of beetroot hummus, mmm. Reasonable brunch prices, less than £10 for your meal and sweet treats on offer all day.

Brunch

Mackie Mayor 

A grade II listed Manchester market building, which was refurbished and reopened late last year. This gorgeous piece of architecture has been filled with mouth watering delights – pizza, fish, pasta, bao buns, drinks and more. It doesn’t come cheap but I have to say the Bao buns we ate were well worth their £7 price tag – the peanut chicken one was my absolute favourite.

Bao Buns

Bao Buns

Daaaawn South

Mecarto Metropolitano

Despite visiting this fantastic market in the heart of Elephant and Castle, it wasn’t until I starting writing this post that I found out that MM is a community based sustainable market. The project aims to enable small entrapreneurs to reach the community with their natural food – and you know what, it is delicious. Great atmosphere, drinks and food from all over the world, what more can you ask for! Prosecco was average London prices and food is between £7 – 15 depending on which stall you pick.

Mercato Metropolitano

Tacos & Tequila

Since I moved from Tooting just less than a year ago, the market dining experience in Broadway has come on tremendously with new pop ups there monthly! One Friday night in late June, Lauren, Kirsty and I took a table at Tacos & Tequila for a large margarita in a skull, Day of the Dead style, “fish bowl” and assorted tacos from the menu. Ox cheek and buttermilk chicken got the thumbs up from us all, I even had another taco for my desert as the girls tucked into chocolate and lemon tarts. Surprisingly filling given they seem pretty small on first look. Cash only, about £20 – 30 per person.

Tacos

Chotto-Matte

Having just read Grace Dent’s review of this Peruvian-Japanese combination restaurant I agreed with plenty of her comments, especially around price. Luckily I came here with a supplier from work so paying wasn’t an issue, but there was a strange way of service throughout the meal. We were encouraged to order plenty but given it was lunchtime we wanted to eat relatively quickly – the order of service meant that some hot food came later, and we thought we’d eaten everything but there was still some items to come, a little confusing. It was tasty though, ceviche was great, sushi and sashimi was aplenty and each dish did look beautiful upon arrival. Not one to visit if you’re watching the dollar bills, but an interesting mash up of cuisine.

Ceviche

Really hard to pick which wins, but given prices, flavours and atmosphere, I think those Manchester spots are top of the list – plus can I really betray my Northern roots? NORTH FOR THE WIN! 

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