Okay so imagine the city of Manchester. Got it? Picture it? Okay, now imagine the city of Manchester with the sun. Seriously, miracles do happen: sometimes it is actually sunny in Manchester. Honestly, it doesn’t rain all of the time! So anyway: it’s sunny; you have the day off work; you’re hungry and your taste buds are craving a bevvy… Where can you possibly go? Why The Oast House of course!
Sandwiched in a sun-trap, around the corner from The Alchemist, Spinningfields, Australasia and running parallel to Spanish tapas giant, Iberica, is The Oast House. A vintage building which was once used to roast hops in the 16 centauries turned BBQ and outdoor drinking heaven, The Oast House is owned by The New World Trading Co., better known as the people who brought you The Botanist. Who knew drinking from watering cans could be so cool?
Side note: if you can go to any Botanist, go to the Newcastle-Upon-Tyne rooftop restaurant/bar above Jamie’s Italian, that setting is B-E-A-uuuuutiful. Hands down my favourite venue in Geordie Land.
Open from 12 pm until 12 am on weekdays, and up until 2 am on the weekends, there’s always time to guzzle prosecco and stick a pie in your gob at The Oast House. However, if the sun is shining get down early, even though there is an abundance of benches, cushions and even steps to perch yourself on outside, they fill up even quicker than you can shout “Get me a G&T!”
I introduced The Oast House to my two friends from Liverpool who were in Manchester for the weekend. We dived straight on the idea of food. As soon as someone says “let’s get food!” is it ever possible to say no? I and Paddy went for the famous hanging kebabs, while Caitlin kept it extremely British and went for a good ol’ Steak and stout pie.
The three-piece Lamb kofta kebab, coming in at £12.50, was served with a pot of slightly-spicy peri-peri sauce (which was dribbled on by the waitress) as well as a gigantic basket of ‘properly’ seasoned chips.
I opted for the hanging( Chicken kebab (£11.50). Served as a hanging skewer, the kebab was stuffed with succulent, melt-in-the-mouth chicken, chargrilled baby Portobello mushrooms, red peppers and onions. While the kofta kebab had peri-peri sauce, mine (like the other hanging kebabs) was served with a sweet chilli and ginger sauce. This tasted exquisite over my chips. Chips and buttery sauce, the picture of health evidently. Miss Universe 2017 coming at cha’.
Steering clear of following the crowd, I was sceptical about Caitlin ordering the pie. A good pie is bloody hard to find, even Pieminister can miss the mark sometimes! However, apparently, the Steak and stout pie was as good as it gets. Priced the same as the chicken kebab, the meat pie was an edible sized portion, served with mushy peas, proper pub gravy and a choice of chips or mash.
The Oast House food was simply stunning. Each of our dishes was demolished in an instant, however, flavours were savoured and positive comments were passed around the table. We left The Oast House full, but not overly stuffed – which is always a good sign.
Service was impeccable, with bar staff offering drink recommendations when I was being one of those customers, and floor staff were chirpy, thankful and happy to help. They were definitely feeling the sun rays and managing to effortlessly weave their way through the ever-growing crowd, so serious hats off to them!
A definite thumbs up from me Oast House and The New World Trading Co. You’ve got yourself three new regulars… All we need now is that Spanish sun all year round! Next up to try is the Manchester version of The Botanist, has it got anything on the Newcastle branch?