“Fit for a king” VIVA Manchester review our new menu - April 2019
By all accounts Prince Albert was a bit of lad what with introducing Christmas trees to the UK to, ahem, giving the royal seal of approval to intimate ‘jewellery’. The Chop House named after him also has a place in history, having started life in 1866 as a Unitarian Church before being transformed some six years ago into a gorgeous, basement eatery with an upstairs pub bit that’s as butch as it comes.
They have a new menu and it fits beautifully with Manchester’s version of Spring. It retains the classic hearty man-size meals that the chop houses (there is Tom and Sam’s too) have become renowned for such as the suet puddings, fish ‘n’ chips and corn beef hash. But now there are new refinements, including a mushroom ‘not suet but tastes like it’ pudding for vegans, so you can take your plant-diet mates there without them feeling left out.
Service is no-nonsense friendly and incredibly knowledgably as Chris the GM delighted us with wines paired to the dishes, we sampled that was a real cut above and the food was wonderfully delicious with a delicate touch to flavours for a menu that seems so macho on paper.
Starters are from £7 and we tucked into cured salmon that apparently, they had changed fishmongers to get, served traditionally with grated egg white and yolks, just lovely, fresh and zingy.
A chicken liver pate was suave and smooth, creamy and dreamy smeared on flash grilled bread, probably one of the best pates in town. We also tried a mini portion of the goats’ cheese, which again thrilled the taste buds, beautifully coated and meltingly good.
Onto mains (from £14.50) and there is a grill, with chops (of course) available and ribeye steaks. Chris explains this is because they can buy the ribeye and offer the best steak at the best prices. There is a rump you can have with egg if you want less fat and a flatten version.
The meat was delicious, juicily cooked and the side of chips where like you wanted your mama to have made, proper chips. Just a whole lot of gorgeous food and perfect as Manchester drizzled, hailed and got sunny, all in the space of a late lunch.
I had their new fish pie which comes with mash (thank god – pie crust are a complete sacrilege in my book when it comes to this dish). Again, this was wonderful, piping hot and crammed with goodies including mussels as you dived into its delicious depths. A side of kale with capers showed how kale should be cooked, as the kale absorbs flavours that the salty capers handed over in bucket loads.
Read thee full review here