January 2020: The restaurant formerly known as Manchester House has closed once again; chef director Aiden Byrne announced the news in the Manchester Evening News and said this time the restaurant has shut for good. MCR relaunched just over a year ago and operated under a two-month rolling lease. But despite glowing reviews – “exceptional food”; “lovely environment” – the site proved to be unsustainable.
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“Delighted that Aiden Byrne has re-opened, doing what he does best”: this Spinningfields site, accessed via a lift – which formerly traded as Manchester House under Byrne – is at the centre of a revolving doors scenario which first saw the site lose Byrne to 20 Stories, then it closed, only for him next to return here in December 2018 as chef/patron, and relaunch it in its current guise. In the evening, the choice is between a six-course (£50) or nine-course (£75) tasting menu, and early reports say he is producing “exceptional food” in the same “lovely environment” with huge open kitchen as before. Its previous incarnation once looked like Manchester’s best bet for a Michelin star in ages; with Mana’s success, perhaps it might now be the best bet for a second?
“It’s surprising Michelin have withheld a star” from this “fabulous” contemporary restaurant, on the 2nd-floor of a Manchester office block – a “lovely and open” space, whose “high ceilings, open ducting and industrial looks” are juxtaposed with some “very classy” and “innovative” cooking (from the 10-course and 14-course tasting menus, alongside which there’s also an à la carte). But despite consistently “outstanding” cuisine and “superb” service it was not to be, and, in September 2017, just prior to this year’s announcement of the stars, chef Aiden Byrne scaled back his involvement here (did he have a tip off?) promoting chef Nathaniel Tofan in the process.
“Buzz buzz buzz”, there’s “always a buzz” at this Manc-bling venue in an office block, combining a 12th-floor cocktail lounge, with a very contemporary 2nd-floor restaurant, where you can watch the chefs in the open kitchen. Some reporters do find it “overpriced” but on most accounts “Aiden Byrne’s cooking keeps going from strength to strength”, delivering “top class complex dishes with clean flavours”.
|Wine per bottle||£35.00|
18-22 Bridge St, Manchester, M3 3BZ
|Tuesday||12 pm‑2:30 pm, 7 pm‑9:30 pm|
|Wednesday||12 pm‑2:30 pm, 7 pm‑9:30 pm|
|Thursday||12 pm‑2:30 pm, 7 pm‑9:30 pm|
|Friday||12 pm‑2:30 pm, 6 pm‑10 pm|
|Saturday||12 pm‑2:30 pm, 6 pm‑10 pm|