The Royal Northern College of Music has a restaurant that’s open to the public. Who knew?
Named after Adolph Brodsky, a world renowned violinist who went on to become the principal of the college, this plush little restaurant is tucked away just off the Concert Bar.
I was a little apprehensive as I walked through the auditorium past groups of girls and guys perched at long tables – long table dining is very a la mode at the moment, apparently – discussing Brexit and whether or not to skip the next morning’s lectures.
But as we turned left at the bar, it was like walking through the wardrobe that led to Narnia.
We walked into something very different – a sophisticated dining area with plush decor. From the chrome-edged bar stools to the cosy dining tables, Brodsky is a real home from home.
I knew that my pre-Crimbo diet wasn’t going to fare well. For starters, I was tempted by my one weakness in life – cheese. It’s that new year’s resolution that seems to creep back into my diet time and time again. But when the cheese tastes as good as it does at Brodsky, I’m not complaining.
The baked Camembert came out surrounded by my second love in life – bread. I grabbed a crisp slice of fresh baked olive sourdough and slathered it in a hearty helping of the cheesy good stuff. It was both moreish and deeply comforting. Like a snug blanket on a miserable day.
I went in for a second helping and as I sank my crisp grissini stick into the cheesy goo, I noticed the thyme and rosemary spears just beneath the lid. The result was a cheesy molten goodness mixed with the aroma of fresh woody herbs that melted perfectly in my mouth. Buttery, salty and creamy in perfect balance.
For mains, I opted for the sweet potato, roasted chestnut, assorted squash and lentil cassoulet. The bread top was crisp and buttery and I ripped it off to reveal a piping hot tender stew of winter vegetables. Each spoonful melted in the mouth, complimented gorgeously by the crisp and crunchy side salad and stems of broccoli.
The steamed fillet of salmon was ordered by my companion and arrived to the table sitting on a bed of beautifully cooked pappardelle pasta in a rich creamy sauce.
The pappardelle was cooked perfectly, the crab fresh and all this brought together by the smooth and richly seasoned sauce.
The steamed salmon on top fell apart at a mere glance, soft and buttery, enhanced by the freshness of samphire. The sauce from the pasta was velvety smooth beneath it. Cheesy, delicious and altogether perfect.
After the above two hearty dishes, we barely had room for pudding. I didn’t think the mains could be topped, but talented chef Eamonn Lam exceeded all expectations.
I asked Monica, our waitress, for her favourite dessert and was delighted when she recommended the Trio amore berry bavarois with fresh berries and grenadine cream. It was exactly the treat that I’d had my eye on.
Tart chunks of fruit in a tangy pomegranate cream, lip-lickingly delicious and sitting atop a sweet biscuit crumbly base.
Jose, the bar and restaurant manager who looked after us, was every bit as show stopping as the food. He made the evening a delight from start to finish. Everything ran smoothly, from the wonderful and attentive staff to the exquisite behind the scenes talents of the brilliant chefs.
If you want to treat yourself, head to the Royal Northern College of Music, away from the hustle and bustle and into a magical world of good food and even better music.
If music be the food of love, why not give it a try?
124 Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9RD