If you have not read any of my previous reviews I review all my venues against the same criteria please click here for details to see what they are and why. This review is from a visit for a friends Birthday Celebration in September 2018
Name of Restaurant
Slug and Lettuce Deansgate Manchester
Reason for Visit – Birthday Celebration
I visited as a celebration for my friends birthday celebration. She had booked a table from 3pm to 7pm on a Saturday afternoon for 10 people.
Although this is not my first visit I have only visited midweek lunch time. My first impression was of a busy vibrant venue. Nice atmosphere that looked inviting. Some fabulous original features from the original occupancy of the building. More of this later. Nice original mahogany columns and glass panels. It appeared a nice venue for a birthday celebration for our age group, the majority of the party were in our 50’s. But also included some younger relatives.
Time To Get Served/Attention
Later in the afternoon/evening we had a designated table waiter, but initially when there were only 3 of us present we had to go to the bar for service. 2 of the party had already got drinks. It took around 7 minutes stood at the bar to be served, no acknowledgement from bar staff before this. They were very intent on making and pouring cocktails or serving elaborately served gin and tonics. I ordered a Manchester Palma Violet gin and tonic. If you are a gin drinker please read my post about my love of gin on my sister blog. The drink was served in one of the fashionable fish bowl goblets and almost filled with ice before the drinks contents were added. The bartender removed half of it at my request. He then erroneously started to add lemonade instead of tonic. He made an attempt to start again but I was happy to continue with lemonade as the mixer, luckily I think this particular gin tastes lovely with lemonade instead of tonic.
After a few drinks we ordered a variety of food from the menu. I chose from the side plate menu of chicken skewers in Peri Peri sauce and sweet potato fries with mayonnaise. I received 3 small skewers and a huge bowl of fries. I’m ashamed to say due to enjoying myself so much I forgot to take photographs of the food. One friend ordered The Camembert sharer for himself and it looked a great platter of appetising food. The skewers had a great spicy taste and the fries were delicious too.
Later on we received table service which was very much appreciated as the venue became very busy and we were sat at a high table on high seats and being a shorty the effort of getting on and off was becoming harder as the drinks flowed. It must be said that cocktails were 2 for 1, a great deal 2 for around £7. Most of us settled on Pink Gin Fizz. The waiter was very attentive and we were never without drinks. He also took our food orders, that cannot have been easy for him as we were ordering a variety of different dishes at different times. Probably quite chaotic for him. Apart from a little issue of a spilled drink onto one of the party the service was excellent, made for an enjoyable evening and birthday celebration. Also ta add there were balloons on the table which was a nice touch.
The only issue I would raise about service is about the preparation of my initial gin and tonic. Fresh raspberries were added to the glass and the server used his fingers to pick them up and drop them in the glass. I almost protested but I refrained as I had already requested some ice to be removed and I didn’t want to appear like a Hyacinth Bouquet type of character! I would have preferred them to have been added using small serving tongs or a cocktail stick.
All in all this was an enjoyable evening in a bar that is part of a large chain. There was a great vibe and atmosphere in traditional looking surroundings. A good night was had by all.
Would I Visit Again
I have to say Yes to this. It was my friends choice and not somewhere I would have chosen but it was very enjoyable. I know the great company went a long way to making the night great. However for a City Centre venue at a very reasonable price that catered for groups celebrating an occasion I think it did a great job.
History of the venue
I touched on the appearance of the venue retaining some of the original features. Being over 50 I can remember what it was before. It was a classy china and Gift store T. Hayward and Co. that had been established over 100 years. If you look closely the original name remains in the bricks above the windows. This is why it has such large windows. I think it is a great touch when the history and features of any building or venue are retained. I think it is these features which enhance the presentation and appearance of this particular branch of The Slug and Lettuce, in fact a few of the birthday celebration party commented on how different this particular branch was compared to others they have visited in the chain. It’s a big thumbs up from me.
Thank you for reading – do you have a favourite Manchester venue for celebrating or a chain you would recommend for similar. I love to hear from you. Either comment or email me