Cibo is a true highlight of Manchester’s Italian food scene. Tucked away on Liverpool Road, it’s one of Deansgate’s more attractive destinations, with huge glass windows allowing diners to watch the world go by outside.
The atmosphere inside is bustling but relaxed, with all available tables busy (all socially-distanced, naturally) and a sense that no matter what’s happening in the wider world, Cibo is a place to kick back and unwind with some of the finest Italian dishes around.
And no matter what food you’re looking for, you’re likely to find it on the menu.
There are sections dedicated to pizza, antipasto, pasta, risotto, meat, fish and more, with each item beautifully described. It’s immediately clear that an impressive amount of effort has gone into the design of each dish.
We begin with some olives, black and green, plump and coated with a light drizzle of salty oil, then move onto the arancini.
Proudly Sicilian, these deep-fried rice balls are a sublime way to kickstart an evening of elegant food and high-end Italian wine. These vegetarian morsels are jam-packed with creamy mozzarella and mini cubes of warm, comforting butternut squash – and undeniably delicious.
The bruschetta al funghi deserves a special mention, too. A thick, crunchy slab of toasted homemade bread, topped with smooth mozzarella and an eye-catching tangle of wild mushrooms, popped under the grill as a final flourish to transform it into the greatest cheese on toast of your life.
The mains are even better, and fish-lovers won’t be disappointed with the farfalle al salmone. These cute little pasta bows pair well with the wonderful cream sauce, dotted with delicate flakes of smoked salmon, dill and bright pink peppercorns.
It’s a hearty dish, both gentle and filling.
The stinco di agnello is another substantial offering – no stingy portions here – with an impressive lamb shank resting on a bed of creamy mashed potato and an abundance of wine-heavy lamb jus.
The meat is cooked beautifully, tumbling off the bone and near-impossible not to finish.
For desserts, the tiramisu is an authentic Italian classic and Cibo do it perfectly. It consists of homemade savoiardi biscuits, soaked in the ideal amount coffee liquor then pieced together with fluffy mascarpone mousse.
It’s a structural marvel, mixing lighter-than-air cream with soft sponge cake, and provides an ideal finish to a great meal.
The vanilla cheesecake is another excellent option, with the fresh vanilla flavour balanced out by a tart zigzag of berry compote.
But the fantastic food isn’t the only reason to visit Cibo this October. If you book your table online in advance, you can enjoy a huge 50% off your food bill, every day from Monday to Thursday.
It’s rare to find food of this quality at a price point like this, particularly in the centre of Manchester.
So don’t miss out, surprise a friend or partner by booking today and enjoy an evening of authentic Neapolitan delights at a pocket-friendly price.