Chef patron Adam Reid has been confidently putting his own stamp on The French restaurant in Manchester’s historic Midland Hotel since the departure of Simon Rogan in 2016, with a more relaxed look and feel for the restaurant and some knockout dishes.
With an impressive 4AA Rosettes for culinary excellence, described as “a creative city kitchen firing on all cylinders”, The French was also 11th in The Good Food Guide 2020 top 50 UK restaurants, the highest entry in Manchester. It offers “refined technique and a distinctive northern sensibility,” says the guide - there is “little room for disappointment here.”
And twinkly-eyed Manchester chef Adam is fast becoming a rising star on TV, too. Last year he cooked the main course of BBC’s Great British Menu banquet after his comforting chicken dish beat the competition, having been awarded a maximum score of 10 by the judges. It was the second time the chef won the accolade, after he made it through to the banquet in 2016 with his dessert, ‘Golden Empire’, consisting of a golden candy apple adorned with hazelnut crumble and meadowsweet custard.
The French’s Grade II listed dining room provides an opulent yet welcoming and friendly atmosphere that’s steeped in history, with striking chandeliers and booths down the centre of the room. The restaurant is famed for its immaculate service as well as its food and is proud to be one of Manchester’s favourite restaurants.
The seasonal menus offer a choice of four, six or nine courses, including a tater ‘ash - a signature dish for the northern chef, and a refined, elegant take on the regional favourite. Adam’s version is made with diced tartare of beef dressed with smoked salt, mixed with confit vegetables, diced potatoes and croutons cooked in dripping, and finished with mushroom catsup. The wine list is impressive, and playful desserts are, unsurprisingly, a highlight.