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Food & Drink

New chips pop-up is serving 54 variations of Belgian-style loaded fries

The Fry-By is offering a whole array of loaded fries

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Manchester's Finest

Manchester’s latest opening is giving the humble plate of chips an exciting new makeover.

Now, it’s no secret that us Northerners regard the deep-fried potato snack very highly – chips aren’t just a meal, they’re a way of life.

Whether you enjoy your chips thick cut or skinny, drenched in salt and vinegar, with a healthy dollop of ketchup or with lashings of gravy, you’ll struggle to find someone who doesn’t hold an avid appreciation for a piping hot plate of chips.

However, here in Manchester, you can usually only enjoy chips as a side with a larger meal – very few places offer the opportunity to buy a portion of delicious chips to enjoy on their own, with a wide variety of toppings on offer to compliment them.

Manchester’s Finest

Well, our chips-on-the-go woes have finally come to an end.

New opening, The Fry-By, located in Hilton Street’s The Corner Boy, has refined the way we eat our beloved chips – they hand cut their potatoes to a consistent thickness and length before triple cooking to perfect that ‘crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside’ texture.

And then comes the seasoning – there are six different salts on offer; the O.G., Smoky, Citrus, Chilli Citrus, Italian and Greek. 

And as for their toppings? Well, this is when the real party begins.

Manchester’s Finest

There are nine different sauces to choose from, all made in-house by Head Chef Cam. 

On the menu, you will find the House Ando (a lemony red pepper mayonnaise), Brown Crab Mayo, Mumbo, BB Sauce, 3 Cheese Sauce, Gravy, Korma Curry and a classic Marinara, which features diced olives, cheese and meat balls – yes, meatballs and chips. 

Each order can come with topped with melted cheese, too.

After a bit of quick maths, that means there are a total of fifty-four different combinations of chips, sauce and salt – what more could you ask for?

The Fry-By will be open and dishing out their loaded fries Thursdays to Sundays between 5pm and 11pm.

You can stay up to date with them on Instagram here.

Food & Drink

A vegan version of Bury Black Pudding is coming to Asda

The Bury Black Pudding as you’ve never seen it before…

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@buryblackpuddings / Instagram

Die hard Black Pudding fans, avert your eyes now: A plant-based version of the famed Bury Black Pudding will soon be landing on supermarket shelves across the country.

For over a century, the Bury Black Pudding Company has stuck to its multi award-winning recipe but four years ago, it decided to take take on a more modern approach and introduce a meat-free recipe with the launch of its somewhat controversial Vegetarian and Vegan Black Pudding.

And, much to the surprise of traditional black pudding consumers, the company has reported ‘year-on-year growth’ ever since the launch of their meat-free alternatives, which swaps out blood, pork fat and rind for vegetable fat and black beans.

@buryblackpuddings / Instagram

The vegetarian and vegan puddings have always been sold via the company’s website or through independent outlets and butchers but, now, the Bury Black Pudding Company has announced that its plant-based puds are heading to the shelves of one of the UK’s biggest supermarkets – Asda.

Over 300 Asda supermarkets across England and Wales will soon be stocking the plant-based product, with the Bury Black Pudding Company announcing on Twitter: “A lot of you have been waiting for this… Our Vegetarian and Vegan Black Pudding 220g will be available to buy from @asda over the next few weeks.”

Speaking on the exciting launch, Matthew McDermid, from the Brand and Marketing department at the Bury Black Pudding Company, said: “We have seen the demand for our Vegetarian and Vegan Black Pudding increase significantly over the last twelve to eighteen months.

“Given ASDA’s keen focus on plant-based options, it made sense for us to approach them with our meat-free alternative. We have a very good relationship with ASDA, who have supported us since 2002 when we first started supplying them, so we are pleased that ASDA have agreed to stock this product – as I’m sure the customer base is too.”

Matthew also acknowledged that, throughout the lockdowns in 2020, more people began experimenting with their food and, as a result, vegan and vegetarian offerings soared. He explained: “Sales of vegan, vegetarian and plant-based food options are increasing each month with all supermarkets, so we are delighted to see our Vegetarian and Vegan Black Pudding available with a national retailer like ASDA.”

The Bury Black Pudding Company’s vegan and vegetarian black puddings will be available in Asda within the next couple of weeks. Make sure to stay posted with updates on their website and Instagram page.

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Food & Drink

NEW OPENING: The Northern Quarter’s first ‘proper’ British steak house

Another NQ spot to add to the list…

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@herd_nq / Instagram

Herd NQ, a pop-up that once resided within the cosy walls of the Northern Quarter’s famed boozer Allotment NQ, has officially taken over the venue and is dishing up some of the best steaks in the city.

It’s definitely something to soften the blow from Allotment NQ’s closure – the pub became a staple part of the area since its arrival on Dale Street in 2014 and will be missed by many.

But, as the famous saying goes, out with old, in with the new!

@herd_nq / Instagram

@herd_nq / Instagram

Herd NQ had actually operated as a pop-up within Allotment NQ, but relaunched as a full operational pub and restaurant with a brand spanking new menu last month on August 31st – and, let’s just say, their steaks are already the talk of the town.

A mix of organic Aberdeen Angus and Hereford crosses, all their meat is dry-aged for thirty days to achieve optimal level of maturity, providing incredible succulence and flavour. The meat also comes in a variety of cuts including ribeye, sirloin, rump, T-bone and even the legendary Chateaubriand sharer.

And of course, it wouldn’t be a real steak house without a massive burger, would it? The triple stacked Herd Burger contains two 6oz beef & bone marrow patties, slow-cooked pulled beef, fried onions, double Lancashire cheese & truffle aioli, all finished on a brioche bun.

@herd_nq / Instagram

@herd_nq / Instagram

And for you Sunday goers, Herd NQ also offers a banging Sunday roast complete with beautifully cooked roast beef, all the trimmings and lashings of gravy. Plus, they have a special offer of two roasts for £25 – can’t complain about that.

Their menu also boasts a delectable selection of sides, including triple cooked chips, truffle and parmesan mash and mac and cheese.

Herd NQ has recently introduced a new Happy Hour between 4pm – 9pm every Wednesday and Thursday, where you can get two for £12 cocktails, house double G&Ts for £5.50, double spirit and mixers for £6, lager for £3.50 and a bottle of wine for £15.

Herd NQ is open Wednesdays – Sundays – make sure to follow them on Instagram for news and updates.

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Food & Drink

Salford Rum to open Greater Manchester’s first ever rum garden and distillery

Salford Rum has gone from strength to strength

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@salfordrum / Instagram

Salford’s very own spirits firm Salford Rum has announced plans to open its own distillery and Greater Manchester’s first ever rum garden.

Established in the summer of 2018 by school friends James Harrison and Tommy Gaughan, Salford Rum has become well known and loved across the whole country for its high quality rum selection – the golden Salford Spiced Rum and the Salford Dark Spice – and unique bottles, each designed and commissioned by local artist Dave Draws.

After noticing their wives’ love for gin and wanting to experiment in the market of rum, the lads spent months researching the art of distilling the spirit and, inspired by the ingredients that used to be imported into the old Salford Docks, they came up with their first recipe, making 200 bottles of the stuff and selling out at a Maker’s Market that very weekend.

@salfordrum / Instagram

And the rest is history.

The brand has gone from strength to strength and, now, its grand plans to open Greater Manchester’s very first rum garden as part of a new expansion into the railway archways on Salford’s Viaduct Street have been unveiled.

James and Tommy got the keys to the distillery, located in Arch 33 and titled The Dirty Old Town Distillery – after the song, ‘Dirty Old Town’ – this week, where renovations will begin immediately.

The new venue will also be home to a craft copper still which will be used to create some of the existing Salford Rums but enable the duo to experiment and innovate more in the small batch space.

@salfordrum / Instagram

Tommy said on the company’s latest venture: “The support we’ve had locally for Salford Rum is nothing short of incredible. When looking for somewhere to take the brand to the next level, it was always going to be in Salford, and always going to be a place whereby our supporters can come and feel like they’re part of the Salford family.”

James added: “It’s been quite a ride and our first step into hospitality feels surreal. It’s time for us to grow in Greater Manchester’s vibrant drinks scene and for the brand to have somewhere to develop and – of course – serve awesome drinks. We’ve got so many ideas and can’t wait to see the distillery space, bar and rum garden come to life over the next couple of months.”

The Dirty Old Town Distillery is scheduled to open to the public in 2022, so make sure to follow their socials and website to keep up with any updates. 

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