Saturday 24 October 2015

The Grill On The Alley...

I love to head over to Manchester and explore the many options for dining out there, the city is just thriving at the moment and there have been numerous additions to the dining scene. Amidst all of these new restaurants opening, it is always nice to visit a well-established classic which has been around for some time. 
I recently dined at Grill on the Alley* which is tucked away on a corner of Ridgefield Street. It is a Blackhouse restaurant which is part of the Living Ventures brand, who operate many superb restaurants and bars. The Grill on the Alley has a charming appearance and it feels warm and welcoming as soon as you arrive, with soft lighting and a sweeping bar area. 
It was a grey and chilly October evening and we felt immediately relaxed as we walked in to the restaurant, which has design features such as exposed brickwork, an open kitchen and a cool illuminated neon sign spelling out the restaurant name. 
We were warmly welcomed by restaurant manager Lee and seated at a booth which gave a good view of the bustling kitchen where a busy service was well underway. We perused the excellent wine menu and chose a Kleine Rust fair trade South African 2014 Pinotage Shiraz, which was an exciting and bold wine with plenty of fruit and a rich deep finish. 

Nibbles of warm baked loaf with salted butter and chorizo butter as well as marinated olives were appreciated as we looked over the extensive menu. The crusty warm baked loaf fell apart and was such a treat with the butter, I love salted butter but I had not tried chorizo butter before which was delightful with a smoky and piquant flavour.

My starter of smoked haddock fishcake was perfect, a large fishcake with a rich golden breadcrumb which fell away to reveal a well-seasoned filling of flaky smoked haddock. An excellent tartare sauce complemented this dish as did the garnish of salad leaves, dressed with a lemon oil which enhanced the entire set of flavours. 

 My dining companion enjoyed spiced honey glazed chicken skewers which were cooked to tender perfection and the chipotle mayonnaise added a lovely sweet and smoky finish whilst the bacon crumb gave yet more flavour and texture. 

The restaurant was filling up and a great atmosphere of chatter and laughter filled the air whilst I could see the kitchen team seamlessly working away, plating up numerous dishes.

Our main courses arrived and we were wowed by the beautiful presentation, I chose the grilled supreme of corn-fed chicken with truffle butter, summer greens and sorrel cream. The dish was a feast for the eyes with the chicken set in the centre surrounded by the truffle butter and cream, with the greens piled on top.  This was a perfect main course, the chicken was tender whilst the sorrel cream added a wonderful bite and the truffle butter brought in a hint of woody autumnal depth. The greens were the perfect accompaniment, as they added a summery crunch and freshness. This is the type of dish I could happily eat every day, rich and comforting with a real finesse to the choice of ingredients which very much complemented each other. I also chose a portion of home-cut chips to accompany this, which were cooked with the skin still on, and they were perfect with a simple sprinkling of sea salt. 

We also shared a side of onion rings which were crispy and delicious with a slightly sweet taste to the onion which was irresistible. 

My dining companion chose a T-bone steak, served with home-cut chips. The steak was quite something to behold, dominating the plate like a small planet! It was perfectly cooked medium-rare as he had asked, and the meat was wonderfully matured and succulent.  The addition of tomato and mushroom went perfectly with the steak and the BĂ©arnaise sauce was excellent, rich and creamy with a subtle flavour profile which allowed the steak to take centre stage. 

Dessert time arrived and we were tempted to order the cheese board but instead we chose two wonderfully sweet dishes to share. The raspberry Pavlova with Amara cherries and summer fruit was simply sublime. The freshly made meringue was wonderfully crunchy as well as slightly chewy and the berries added sweetness and tang in equal measure. Sticky toffee pudding is without doubt one of my favourite ever desserts and this one was faultless, a divine freshly made sponge was surrounded by rivers of an amazingly rich toffee sauce, whilst vanilla ice cream was the ideal accompaniment. We rounded off the meal with a coffee and soaked up the relaxed ambience which was reminiscent of a restaurant in New York, as live music filled the air and plates piled high with delicious food were whisked past us. 

I should also mention the amazing cocktail list on offer at Grill on the Alley, I was impressed to see some really unusual options such as Carrot Cake Martini, Eton Mess, Cherry and Thyme and Chestnut Manhattan alongside more familiar classics such as Cosmopolitan, Mai Tai and Espresso Martini. 

There is a superb selection of dishes on offer at Grill on the Alley, with a wide range of seafood, steaks, burgers and salads alongside classic dishes such as fajitas and chicken kiev. All the beef is premium quality and 28 day aged to ensure a depth of flavour and tenderness. There is even Wagyu beef on the menu for something a little more special, and it is available as either a Wagyu fillet steak or a 100% Wagyu burger. 

 We had an amazing time at Grill on the Alley, the charm and sophistication of this restaurant makes it clear to see why it is such an established stalwart of the Manchester dining scene. The food was second to none in both flavour and presentation whilst the service was excellent throughout. It was a lovely evening and I would thoroughly recommend this restaurant to everybody, it makes a wonderful place to dine when in Manchester with a timeless charm which ticks all the boxes. 

What do you all think, would you like to soak up the atmosphere at Grill on the Alley and try some of these incredible dishes ? As always I cannot wait to hear your thoughts and thank you so much for reading this post. A big thank you to Grill on the Alley for a lovely evening. 

5 Ridgefield Street
M2 6EG
0161 833 3465

Until next time, 



We were kindly invited to dine at Grill on the Alley, the meal was complimentary for review purposes. All opinions expressed herein are my own and honest. 


  1. This post is mouth watering!! All the food looks delicious - especially the chicken skewers xx

    Abi | abistreetx

  2. The food looks amazing! Making me hungry just looking at it

    Lauren x |

  3. food look good i want some

  4. warm bread is the best

  5. Wooooww you make me crave for beef chops and fries
    Love it

    The Bandwagon Chic | Instagram | Bloglovin | Snapchat: bandwagonchic

  6. Lovely post :)

    New post at

  7. hy darling thank u so much for your comment, wow what a beautiful post,the food looks amazing and now i'm so hungry....really i have to try this restaurant if i come here...
    a big kiss

  8. Oh man that looks INCREDIBLE! x YUMMMMMMYYYY!

    Ashleigh x

  9. The place looks lovely and the food delicious. God, your photos made me so hungry :) If I'm ever in Manchester I'll definitely grab a bite there!
    Ivona from

  10. Yummy! I wish I could try one of those french fries right about now.

  11. All these food looks so delicious! Sticky toffee pudding... yummy! x

  12. It all looks delicious!