Amy Harrod reflects on what the team got up to in March.
Great Irish Office Bake Come Dancing!
In honour of Saint Pat, we raided our wardrobes for a hint of green, cracked open the baileys and enjoyed not one but two beautiful baked goods. Liz kicked off the St Pats Party with her delicious soda bread for breakfast. Baked fresh that morning, still warm from the oven, we slathered it in butter and washed it down with our morning teas. Next up was Bronagh’s Guinness cake. Being Irish I had high hopes for Bronagh’s bake and she didn’t disappoint. Gooey, chocolatey sponge with cream-cheese icing. Yum! Just don’t attempt an office Irish dancing lesson straight after consumption.
Manchester Irish Festival at Albert Square
We paid a lunch time visit to Albert Square for the St Patricks Day, Irish Festival. The Guinness and Irish coffees tasted good in the Manchester sun but I was hoping for a bit more atmosphere – no jigging in sight!
Big Grille Style at Piccadilly Gardens Street Food Market
Jack had been banging on about these glorified cheese toasties for a while, so one sunny lunch break we headed to Piccadilly Gardens to sniff out the Big Grille Style stall. As a fan of 90’s sitcom, Fresh Prince of Bel Air, I was eager to check out this place, based on the theme alone.
Not your average toasties, these hip hop hot sarnies promise ‘you’ll be breaking, locking and popping after the first bite.’
I went for ‘The Fresh Prince’, grilled cheese, stuffed with homemade BBQ pulled pork, mac ‘n’ cheese with a three cheese blend. A real belly-buster, so make sure you’re hungry but this was good – sweet yet salty, crispy yet creamy and definitely deserving of a little Carlton Dance!
Liz’s leaving gluten free doughnuts
March saw the sad departure of our Liz. We made sure she wouldn’t forget us too quickly by tracking down what she thought was nigh impossible – it’s even in her Instagram bio “ever searching for a gluten free doughnut”
We searched and we found. The beautifully boxed goodies arrived by post from London home bakers, Borough 22. An exciting range of flavours, from classic cinnamon to raspberry pistachio, unlike much of the other gluten free fare, these were tempting and tasty enough for even the gluten tolerant. Currently available in Selfridges London, we look forward to them making their way up North in the near future. We enjoyed ours with bubbles from a Princess cup and a few goodbye tears.
Northern Quarter Independent Shopping Spree
We bought birthday and leaving gifts from the wonderful array of independent boutiques scattered across the Northern Quarter this month.
If you’re looking for a quirky little something, Oklahoma on High Street, has everything from Siamese cat salt and pepper pots to unicorn pens. We bought the unicorn pen, Flamingo cake decorations and a cat compact mirror.
Lifestyle store and coffee bar, Fig and Sparrow was next on our list. Buying for a professional tea drinker is no easy feat but this place stocks high quality specialist teas and coffees that can not only be sipped in store but should you wish, you can buy a big bag of beans or leaves to make and enjoy at home.
Independent beer specialists, Beer Moth on Tib Street were our first port of call for craft beer boffin – Richards’s birthday gift. This little bottle shop has a big choice on offer, with unique and interesting beers from around the world. Not only is the choice unbeatable but the staff are bloody brilliant at dishing out advice and recommendations.