Harden's survey result
For 25 years we've been curating reviews of the UK's most notable restaurant. This year diners have submitted over 60,000 reviews to create the most authoritative restaurant guide in the UK.
It would be too strong to call it a disastrous decline, but since Simon Rogan severed his ties with this famous but “hushed and slightly stilted” chamber, performance has gone from rocky to a-bit-more-rocky. Loyalists feel “Adam Reid’s style adds a warmth to the presentation and stays true to good produce and clean cooking” within the scope of his 4-, 6- and 9-course tasting menus; and praise staff who are “friendly and not stuffy”. The scepticism of former years persists however, with critics feeling the performance is “too expensive” (“boy those portions are small!”) or “lacking finesse”.
In October 2016, a couple of weeks after it failed to win a Michelin Star, Simon Rogan severed his links with this famous dining room (where Mr Rolls first met Mr Royce in days gone by), so we’ve left it un-rated, even though head chef Adam Reid remains in place. Perhaps under the management of the hotel, this operation will sort itself out, because reports this year suggested the former set-up “just hadn’t got it right”. Fans were very enthusiastic, extolling “adventurous food and a wonderful, wonderful overall experience”, but even some of them could find the ambience “uptight”, and a worrying number of harsher critics “were hugely disappointed on so many levels” finding it “very fancy, but neither memorable nor exceptional”. Perhaps by next year it will have settled down a bit?
The only choice is how many courses you wantÂ (you can have either 6 or 10), when you a secure table in Manchesters grandest dining space. Despite the lack of options, chef Adam Reids innovative and amazingly flavourful parade of dishes are exceptionalÂ, if fully priced; the space itself can appear a tad corporateÂ.
“This is the food Manchester was waiting for!”, says one of the many fans of Simon Rogan’s “stunning” modernistic relaunch of what, back in the ’70s, was the grandest dining room in town; even fans, though can note dishes varying “from exceptional to ordinary”, and the decor is “stark” for some tastes.
Peter St, Manchester, M60 2DS
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Tue-Sat 5-9.30 pm
Last orders: 9.30 pm