* Prices may differ from that shown
I have dined at the Restaurant Bar and Grill many times. Last weekend, along with my husband I was sitting enjoying the Manchester sunshine by the window, eating a bowl of olives and drinking a cold glass of Chardonnay when I suddenly thought "why haven't I written about this place on dooyoo?" On Sunday I posted off a suggestion and so here we are. The Venue The Bar and Grill is situated in the centre of Manchester and is based on two floors. The bar area is on ground floor, whilst the restaurant and grill are on the upper. If you can get a window seat, even better as it is a great place to people watch. The restaurant has always been known for attracting Manchester's football players and indeed this was a favourite haunt of the Beckhams before they left for Madrid. Visiting teams pay visits too, Michael Owen had been in the night before. It is popular with the cast from Coronation Street, as it isn't far from Granada studios. That aside, now for the food. The Menu Starters include fried chilli squid with Thai noodle salad, roasted red pepper and vine tomato soup and tempura of king prawns with a chilli and lime jam. On this occasion, hubby chose Thai prawn cakes with sweet chilli sauce (£5.95) and I had baked mushrooms with goat's cheese and caponata (£4.95). The mushrooms came stacked with the cheese on top. Both starters were delicious. Another favourite starter with us is the mezze plate which is great to share. This consists of olives, humous, falafel, tzatztzi, tabbouleh and marinated feta cheese. At a cost of £7.95 it is great value. Mains include a pasta and noodle range, a spicy shrimp risotto and a mushroom and Parmesan risotto. Both cost £8.95. The linguine with king prawns, coriander, ginger and chilli is my favourite in this section. Just a hint of chilli gives this dish a wonderful kick without overpowering the taste of the prawns. This dish will set you back £9.50. Other main dishes worth a mention include seabass, tandoori baked with mint yoghurt, chargrilled tuna with Catalan peppers and romesco sauce, steak pudding with stout and onion gravy and for those who like simple - fillet steak, 8oz simply grilled. All average around the £13 mark. However we both chose our firm favourite which is marinated chicken breast with Malayan spices, sweet potato, coconut and lime. I have to admit that this is one of the tastiest dishes I have had anywhere. My husband describes the experience as "an oral orgasm" so make of that what you will! I have never had a pudding here and so I can't comment but they do look tempting. There is usually a choice of around six and they are all priced at £4.95. If I were to make a choice, I would go for the vanilla crème brulee with lemon shortbread or the white and dark chocolate brownies with mascarpone. Wines include around a dozen of each red and white and a couple of bottles of rose and range from £13- £25, a few are served by the glass and Sancerre and Chianti are available in half bottles. Champagne is also available as is a range of cocktails. Service This is something I love, the waiters are extremely friendly and chatty which adds to the buzz of the place. They are nearly all foreign and of various nationalities which means we have some interesting conversations. Last week we were served by Andreas from Halkidiki in Greece. We have been to Greece and the Greek Islands and we discussed our favourite places and he tested us on our limited Greek language. It made me want to go back. Service is pretty prompt unless you dine around peak time on a Friday and Saturday evening when you may have to be a little patient. Opening times The restaurant is open from noon until 3pm and again from 6pm until 11pm Monday to Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, you can dine from noon until late. What the restaurant says about itself "Restaurant Bar and Grill serves high quality cuisine of eclectic dishes alongside wines and cocktails from around the world, in a striking, contemporary environment. Service is professional and attentive; the atmosphere relaxed; whilst the open kitchens add theatre to the dining experience. The restaurant attracts great acclaim both nationally and locally, with an affluent clientele mingling happily with city professionals and shoppers" My overall opinion I agree whole heartedly with the above comment. The restaurant is never short of diners, both lunch times and evenings. I recommend that you book whenever you go as it is always busy. Particularly popular is the arching glass canopied section at the front. The meals are classy and even the burgers are upmarket served with Monterey jack cheese and a caramelised onion relish. This is a favourite for corporate dining - a grown up version of TGI Fridays only with a well chosen wine list and attentive service. Because of it's football clientele, it is very popular with groups of ladies. It isn't the place to go for a romantic evening. The only negative comment is that the menu is a little short of vegetarian options especially on the main courses. Having said that, if you want to enjoy great food in a wonderful ambience with the likelihood of seeing a famous footballer, the Restaurant Bar and Grill fits the criteria and the city of Manchester isn't bad either!