Sunday 3 March 2013

Neighbourhood, Manchester.

Last Saturday was a very strange evening. Firstly, we went to Guerilla Eats, which is a brilliant idea, but in reality involved us queuing for almost an hour in a freezing cold warehouse for some (admittedly nice) hotdogs. Then we went on to Neighbourhood for some drinks.
Now we're not normally in town at 9pm on a Saturday night these days, preferring the safe confines of Chorlton (we're all over 40.) We tried to get into the very busy bar. "Not tonight!" The security announced. I've not been refused entry at anywhere for a good 20 years. "Why?" "You're wearing trainers," they said. I think they secretly knew that we weren't really their target clientèle. They were right. But as our friends had already got a table, they came out to get us. We were in. Other friends fled to the safety of The City Arms. We decided to stay.

It was buzzing, but full of men in suits ogling the women, some dressed as glamorous Russian escorts. (I'd imagine.) To me, it was like watching a documentary on human behaviour. Like I said, I've not been anywhere like it since the mid 90's. Instead of admiring the women, I'm at that age now, where I'm actually worrying they'll catch their deaths without any coats on.
Despite our funny night at Neighbourhood, I was keen to go back, as the menu looked fabulous. I knew like Australasia that it'd be a different kettle of fish in the early evening. So we went on Thursday at 6 to celebrate Mrs Bacon's last exam.
I'd already tried to book a booth, which they couldn't promise, and in the end we didn't get one. But we did get a nice table for two in the lower quieter section.
We love a booth, sadly we didn't get one!

I ordered a Samual Adams Beer and Mrs Bacon got a delicious Meringue Martini which was good value at only £7.50.
Meringue Martini.

Samual Adams Beer & Menu.
Unfortunately the oysters were off 'due to the norovirus' so we ordered the Hand Cut Steak Tartare: Raw yolk & rye bread toast (£9.50) this was fresh but under-seasoned and not quite as good as a recent one we had in Prague at Lokal. We liked the crispy thin toast though.
Hand Cut Steak Tartare: Raw yolk & rye bread toast.
We both loved the three mini Mini Wagyu Burgers ( £3.50 each.) Why is all miniature food so enjoyable?

 We also really enjoyed the pasta dishes, firstly the Wild Boar Ragu: Tomato ragu, troffiette pasta & shaved parmesan (£10) which was Mrs Bacon's favourite of the night, mine was the Wild Mushroom Rigatoni: Mascarpone, chives & parmesan (£9.) I could have quite easily licked the plate clean of that creamy sauce, the ultimate sign of really enjoying your food in our house.
Wild Boar Ragu: Tomato ragu, troffiette pasta & shaved parmesan.

Wild Mushroom Rigatoni: Mascarpone, chives & parmesan.
These were exactly the dishes we had in mind when we went to Italia last year, but which sadly they did not deliver. The atmosphere was good, actually a lot of slightly older people in the early evening, I guess post work from the offices in Spinningfields, they were quite smartly dressed as well. The interior reminds me a little of Damson Mediacity, very swish with beautiful lighting. The staff were all excellent too.  For mains we got the New York Sausage, Prosciutto Ham & Red Onion Pizzetta (£9), it was gorgeous. The spicy sausage, and nice crispy sweet base were spot on.
New York Sausage, Prosciutto Ham & Red Onion Pizzetta.
The good value, slightly different cut of the 12oz Flat Iron Steak (£14) looked the business, was cooked to perfection, rare as I like it, but sadly was quite a chewy piece of meat.
12oz Flat Iron Steak.
As the music went from Starship's "We Built this city on Rock and roll" into George Michael's "Freedom," we paid our bill, too full to have any puddings, and we were getting texts from our friends at Chorlton's Electrik Bar's 4th Birthday promising free beer and canapés (this turned out to be correct as my hangover on Friday would attest.)
We both enjoyed Neighbourhood, the NY style concept works, the interior design is beautiful, but they back it up with both excellent service and good food.
Our bill came to £83.93, which we thought was just about worth it for the area.
We'll be back, and hopefully we'll get one of those booths next time.
Price: Not cheap.
Service: Efficient & quick.
Atmosphere: Doesn't feel like it's in Manchester. This is a good thing.
Food: Very good.
Star dishes: Mrs Bacon: Wild Boar Ragu
Mr Bacon: Wild Mushroom Rigatoni.
Avenue North, Spinningfields

Neighbourhood on Urbanspoon


  1. I felt the same about the steak tartare although have to say I wasn't impressed by the wild boar ragu - I think Jamie enjoyed it but it really reminded me of something I've had out of a tin when I was a child! Pizettas are great though.

  2. Thanks for your comments guys. I think I know what you mean about the wild boar ragu, it was a strong flavour, maybe it's that me & Mrs Bacon grew up eating stuff out of tins! ;)

  3. Since writing this review, several reports of heavy handed security have emerged. Plus perhaps not so sympathetic management responses.
    As we dined there very early evening we didn't experience this ourselves. Although as described above we were initially refused entry when we went for a drink a few days earlier. I would now approach with caution.

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