Manchester venues don’t get much more stylish than Dive Bar & Grill.
Right at the heart of the Northern Quarter, next door to Afflecks Palace, this underground destination is deceptively large, with various rooms for drinking, dining and watching sports.
Outside, you’ll find the city’s best-looking alfresco space, the beautifully-lit (and heated) terrace.
But lately, it’s the food that’s making waves, with reports that this sharp-looking restaurant-bar is serving up some of the most dazzling food available in this part of Manchester.
The restaurant itself is a pleasure to the senses, perfectly-lit and with a relaxing soundtrack of modern house and disco – it’s a refined take on city centre casual dining with the added bonus of wonderfully charming staff who know the menu inside out.
All the dishes are prepared and cooked on-site, even the excellent artisan bread which opens the meal (the treacly pumpkin seed rye bread is worth the visit alone), which make clear that Dive isn’t cutting corners when it comes to food.
And the starter confirms this.
These Maryland crab cakes are delicious balls of soft crab meat, covered in crunchy panko breadcrumbs, topped and tailed with cute dollops of coriander-infused avocado, with a segment of charred lime to squeeze over the lot.
The combination works wonders, with the subtle crab and avocado flavours lifted to new heights thanks to the dash of sharp citrus.
It’s a treat for the eyes as well as the tastebuds, practically guaranteed to pop out on Instagram.
The mains are even better, with the grilled pork chop course one of the best available in Manchester.
This thick chop comes with a nicely seared layer of fat, staying soft and succulent all the way through and matching beautifully with the side pot of mustard sauce.
The mac and cheese is a delight, thanks to smart little flourishes like adding crisped onion and finely-chopped chives to the top layer of sharp, tangy cheese sauce and pasta.
And the cheesecake delivers a lot more than you might expect.
Rather than the usual old-fashioned slice, here it’s a show-stopping long piece of dessert, holding four half-spheres of dark chocolate, full to the brim with gooey salted caramel.
Each mouthful is an explosion of pleasure and it’s impossible not to finish.
There’s a lot more to the menu than this, including healthy options such as BBQ watermelon, and a range of enticing vegan dishes.
Plus you can also try out Dive’s Sunday lunch, with two courses for £21.50 or starter, main and dessert for just £24.50.
It’s impossible not to be impressed by the food on offer at Dive. The menu is full of eye-catching creations that taste as good as they look and, indeed, some of the courses wouldn’t look out of place at the city’s high-end tasting menus.
Late night drinks might be off the cards for the foreseeable future, but Dive have responded to this in the best way possible: by crafting a truly stunning menu of must-try dishes.
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