Date Nights in Manchester

If like me, you love a date night then you'll know that the setting is as key to the night as the food and drink is. Manchester has it's a fair amount of restaurants and bars, some of the course better than others, and some too expensive for what you get. Over the past few years, my love for City dining has increased, and below I have listed the TOP 5 places I RECOMMEND for the perfect first date, for cosy catch up's after a long week at work or for that special anniversary. I've given my views on the TOP 5 places that I love and places you MUST visit in Manchester!

GAUCHO

Now I had actually never heard of Gaucho until it was pointed out to me, and if you didn't know where it was, you would walk past it! Don’t let the outside put you off, from the exterior you will be made to believe it is a quiet, small restaurant, but wait until you get inside. You’re met with exquisite décor and the open wide space of the room will have you wondering how this historical Methodist Church was so hidden, with cow seat chair covers and stunning white walls with beautiful detail, you’ll have a hard time concentrating on the menu. The open kitchen ensures your senses will be tingling, and if you had any intention of not having a steak here, the waitress will soon change your mind when she brings around the selections of meats. I felt like this was a great touch, and it also helped you understand more about the Argentine meats. It can be a tad pricey but one of the best steak restaurants I have ever been to, and worth the splurge! The massive positive is, the waitress will be able to recommend to you an Argentina wine which will complement your meal, and trust me when I say they know what they are talking about. As a nice touch, they give you a range of choices with different price ranges – of course, you could just pick off the menu. I found myself in awe of this restaurant, and although I haven’t been for a while, I would happily return.

AUSTRALASIA

Now, this is one for drinking as well as the food, as Australasia have nailed the cocktails down to a T! Set underground, the atmosphere is perfect if you’re looking for that intimate date night. As Australasia put it on the website “Modern Australian cuisine combines Pacific Rim flavours underpinned by European cooking tradition, a blend of Indonesian, South-east Asian influences and Australia’s strong ties with Japan also help determine the taste and style” I don’t think I could explain it any better than that. The best way to tackle the food is to share, tapas style, that way you get to experience all kinds of food, from sushi to steak, your taste-buds will be tingling at all points. Again, an open kitchen aspect will have you drooling, and don’t forget to try the desserts. The all famous chocolate domes are a hit here, and you will be amazed at how well it works in real life! After dinner, head to the bar and enjoy the cocktails on offer and make sure you check out the DJ’s digital decks, either I am easily pleased or this is actually amazing.

RESTAURANT BAR AND GRILL

I think this has to be one of my all time favourite restaurants in Manchester, the newly refurbished restaurant has it all, exquisite taste and beautiful surroundings, the all new weatherproof terrace will have you feeling snug and warm with the fresh air around you too, I’d suggest it to be the best place to sit! A great venue not just for date night but for group parties, there will be something for everyone on the menu. Reasonably priced, you will find it hard to resist having a steak here, as it says in the name the grill food is perfect. I think the key fact for this place is that the staff actually really take their time in getting to know you and what you’re looking for, and are always happy to share suggestions to make sure you get the best out of your time there. For me, I find this always makes a dining out experience more pleasant and I will return for that reason!

SOLITA

A more relaxed venue, but one not be missed! The amazing Solita situated in the Northern Quarter will have you positively rolling out the door. An American styled restaurant will have you laughing at the names of the dishes available, but will also leave you intrigued and wanting to order just so you can try them. A great atmosphere, I sat downstairs when I visited and don’t be disappointed, you will still get a good vibe and the booths gave me the feeling of being in a little American diner somewhere – a win win for me as I still have to visit America but get a little taste here in the Northern Quarter.; The burgers will have you wanting to challenge one another to a man vs food competition, but don’t let this put you off for you smaller eaters, there is something for everyone. I didn’t book a table, but this is more than fine in the Northern Quarter, just pop your name on the waiting list and grab a drink or two in one of the local bars!

THE BOTANIST (DEANSGATE)

Again, a more chilled out restaurant compared to some of Manchester’s offerings, but one that will turn into a favourite. The atmosphere in here is one of my favourites, with dimmed lights and a rustic wooden theme throughout, you will leave feeling content! A warning note – The Botanist’s Bar Staff know how to make a good cocktail, you will find it difficult to leave when you’ve started! The food here is great – simple and easy and you will find something on the menu whether it is quick snacks after work or a meal on a Saturday afternoon.. a great bar/restaurant that is easy and simple!