September 2015 saw Bella Italia launch a brand new menu and a brand new look. Their venues up and down the country are getting a fab new makeover featuring bold Mediterranean colours, cosy booths and quirky Italian styling including Vespas and gelato carts where you can create your own dessert. My girlfriend and I were kindly invited to go down and try it out as part of their #BellasBigFreeDinner campaign. Upon arriving at their Church Street restaurant in Blackpool we approached the counter and were greeted with a friendly smile and shown quickly to our seats. Read full post
Paul Askew has a lot to smile about. Recently his new Liverpool restaurant The Art School celebrated its first birthday and he has already bagged two AA Rosettes! So with a new autumn menu just about to launch, we wondered what he thought about Northern gastronomy, Michelin stardom and being touted as the ‘Mr Nice Guy’ of the cheffing world.
They’ve been bubbling along, just skimming under the surface of our consciousness for a little while now and slowly we’ve all become accustomed to the wacky New York-based idea that is the single-concept restaurant: a joint specialising in one thing. Sometimes it works, sometimes not, but they’re definitely a draw. We’ve picked out some of the best.
On the cusp of their seventh restaurant opening and Liverpool debut, we managed to squeeze in a quick-fire Q&A with Paul Newman and David Mooney (aka @GobbyChef) from the award-winning New Moon Co. The Old Blind School is a Grade 2-listed building on Liverpool’s Hardman Street now lovingly restored in keeping with the building’s unique history and boasts a 200+ cover restaurant spread across two floors with a state of the art kitchen. We talk world domination, Twitter and the secret to successful working relationships. Read full post
Each month we welcome Head Chef Jon Los from the four-Star The Bishopstrow to share with you his favourite seasonal ingredients to work with in his kitchen. This time we look to Jon’s next ingredient of choice: the awesome asparagus. Jon says “This is a quick and easy starter, we have something similar on our A la Carte menu at the moment which is flying out! I love asparagus, it doesn’t have the longest of seasons in England so enjoy it whilst you can. You don’t have to use a duck egg they are very rich in flavour, some prefer a hen’s egg, or if you are looking for little canapés the tip of the asparagus with a quail egg and aioli on a tea spoon (watch out though Quails eggs are very fiddly)!” Read full post
Set in 20 private acres of country garden, moor and woodland, Gilpin Hotel and Lake House sits in the heart of the English Lakes National Park. Barney Cunliffe and Hrishikesh Desai recently appeared together in Alex Polizzi’s BBC2 programme Chefs on Trial as she helped the Cunliffe family search for an executive chef. Hrishikesh was selected from some very strong competition and is now settled at the Gilpin helm. We spoke to managing director Barney Cunliffe and newly appointed executive chef Hrishikesh Desai about Alex Polizzi, fine dining and the future of Gilpin Hotel and Lake House. Read full post
The growth of Manchester’s vibrant and increasingly diverse array of restaurants over the past two years has inevitably accrued some casualties along the way. And while many of us are busy celebrating the city’s booming dining scene, others are lamenting the loss of some old friends. One of those casualties has been The Market Restaurant on High Street in the Northern Quarter. Once famed for its cosy, cottagey style and award-winning Modern British food it has closed its doors after 34 years in business. Read full post