What better way can there be to spend the last few hours of the salad days of Summer than at the chic new beach house cum plantation balcony Grand Pacific, the younger sibling of Australasia spawned just a few short months ago.
“.it makes you feel good, like you’re still on holiday.”
I’ve been a few times over the Summer months to this hideaway because it makes you feel good, like you’re still on holiday and what with the surprisingly good weather us Mancunians just frankly mistrust, it is the ideal spot to make the most of it.
Decked in cool Med blues, beach-blanched wood, with comfy outdoor booths and hedges sparkling with fairy lights, it serves food until 6pm (when it then turns into a rocking bar until 2am), with the small plates and sushi from its more established sister that it backs onto and shares loos with.
Ginger and I decided to indulge in their afternoon tea deal (Asian High Tea) which is an absolute steal at £50 per couple (£25 each) including small plates and two glasses of fizzy chardonnay followed by sweets and a choice of tea.
“.enough to fill even someone from Swinton.”
Obvs, we swapped our two glasses of fizz for a bottle of scrummy Kiki fizz and then waited for the first wave.
Served on Grand Pacific’s take of a tiered cake plate, this is enough to fill even someone from Swinton as we dived into shredded chicken salad.
It’s served on one of those Chinese porcelain spoon that you’re meant to nibble on daintily or if your Ginger, just shove in your gob. Delish.
“Combining the excellence of Australasia’s wonderful fusion food with something so quintessentially British.”
Then it was neat little bowls of noodles with fish and prawns – a sprinkling of pea-shoots getting it as near to a trad afternoon tea as this got. Gorgeous.
My favourite however were the duck pancakes, so wonderfully melt in the mouth that we wanted the whole Drake.
Then it was time to go for the bottom tier sushi, again plentiful and you can’t help but think they are onto a real winner with this. Combining the excellence of Australasia’s wonderful fusion food with something so quintessentially British as afternoon tea.
“.pretty flowers decking the food. I do hope they were edible as the Ginger ate them.”
It all looked so good as well, with pretty flowers decking the food. I do hope they were edible as the Ginger ate them and I am writing this presuming he hasn’t died.
We chatted and caught up (he’s been in America, I’ve been working) and it is just a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon although what happens when the normal Manc weather returns we’ll have to wait and see.
It’s one of my fave places, like the RBG terrace, with a chilled out vibe, Ibiza anthems and if you can get a table, is the perfect treat.
Then it was onto the sweet bit. This is normally more Ginger’s bag than mine, him being the sweet-toothed lothario.
But, OMG, this was heaven on a plate – well several plates. The coconut ice-cream wrapped in an upmarket Magnum-style chocolate was just to die for.
“.a splendid way to celebrate Summer, life and everything.”
My favourite was a pink meringue that somehow tasted as you would expect pink meringue to taste and took me back to childhood treats at Bettys.
The buttermilk pannocotta sidled down my throat like a moment of ecstasy and the blueberry crème fraiche was a wholesome, tart note.
There were fairy buns and other bits but by this time we couldn’t eat another thing so gave them to the table next door which gobbled them up in nanosecond.
Overall, a splendid way to celebrate Summer, life and everything. Go while it’s still hot, although I’m sure those clever boys at Living Ventures will find some way of keeping the worst of Manchester weather at bay as Autumn creeps up on us all (anyone been watching the Dome?).
On the I Love’o’meter
I great take on an English classic at a bargain price. We’re in love (again).
Grand Pacific, 1 The Avenue, Spinningfields, Manchester M3 3AP
0161 831 0288