Manchester is a fantastic place for food, whatever your taste and whatever your budget. From the higher end, glamorous 20 Stories to the less showy but still delicious rice and three at This and That. But where better on a hot and sunny bank holiday Saturday than Manchester’s street food markets. Given the popularity of street food markets, there are plenty to choose from in Manchester. So we spent the day eating and drinking our way around the beautiful city, visiting three markets. Yes it was fairly arduous, but you know somebody’s got to do it…
First up was Hatch. The newest addition to the street food market scene, this place is a vibrant little courtyard off Oxford Road. It’s built from shipping containers and the vibrant neon shines brightly under the Mancunian Way. We started off here with cheesy crab balls from Holy Crab. Crisp on the outside, gooey on the inside with a creamy cocktail sauce for dunking. Paired with a cold craft lager from Ol Nano it was delicious. Had we not been in for the long haul that day, this would have been great with a chilled white wine.
After enjoying the vibe for a while, we wondered over to Grub. Across the road from Piccadilly station, Grub is bigger than Hatch, with long tables and a bit more space with the same chilled out vibe.
One of the best things about street food markets is that you can literally eat your way around the world. We like to buy a couple of different dishes and share, to ensure maximum taste experience! So at Grub we would have tried the Poutine with this but alas it was cash only (always a surprise when card isn’t accepted, I wonder how much business they lose out on). Instead we made do with Korean Chicken. Which was tasty but I thought a bit of a stingy portion, given the £7.50 price tag.
The traders change at Grub, so there’s always something new to try. And Sundays are plant powered – vegan dishes only.
Onto our third stop of the day, conveniently situated at the opposite end of Manchester near Victoria train station (good to walk off the first two courses to ensure plenty of room for the third) and Sadler’s Yard. Apparently now known as NOMA, this market is on once a month on a Saturday, so check dates before you plan to go.
It was a bit quieter here, with fewer traders to choose from. But the DJ was great and the Pilcrow Pub provided a crisp, cold cider which went very nicely with our Kenyan Barbeque Beef.
We chilled out here for a while and then went in search for dessert. Obviously ice cream was essential on a day like this – we headed up the hill to the Northern Quarter to Ginger’s Comfort Emporium, which has a permanent home in Afflecks Palace. A Malted Coconut Milk for me and a Chorlton Crack (salted caramel and peanut butter) for him.
On a beautiful summer’s day there is no better way to spend it than enjoying (plenty of) great food, drink and music in the sunshine.
Although we visited three of Manchester’s street food markets, there are plenty more to choose from. Our next taste of the markets is definitely going to include Makers Market, Stockport’s Foodie Fridays and Levy Market.
What street food markets around the country would you recommend?