Have you heard of Luck, Lust, Liquor And Burn? Asks our intern Ellen. “No, is it a film?” We retort. It sounds like a new collaboration from Tarrentino & Rodreguez or a film by Terry Gilliam staring Johnny Depp. Do Mexican truck drivers suddenly burst into vampires after too much whiskey in an awesome twist of plot?
“We could never be too short of some luck in our lives and lust AND liquor.”
No, close though (Almost), Luck, Lust, Liquor And Burn is a new Mexican food joint presented to us by the guys at Almost Famous where Socio Rehab used to be in the Northern Quarter and it looks cool. Being fans of elaborately marketed American style hangouts, which is what the Northern Quarter is best for producing, we went along to check it out.
We could never be too short of some luck in our lives and lust AND liquor. I think it’s safe to say we could all do with some burn right about now. A bit of sun burn I mean, not third degree or out. But I think now, the burn element to the name is to do with the chilli. It’s definatley not the staff. The staff are as cold as ice. They are evil. Is it a daft strategy to give the place attitude? Or is it just our luck we get lumbered with these misserable as sin pair behind the bar when we come in?
I love film, cinema – I’m a movie geek. I often relate places or situations to film scenes or even make up my own… what could be a film. Being a media buff, maybe I should become a movie director? I’m thinking of introducing a film review section to the website, actually. Anyhow, taking the name Luck, Lust, Liquor And Burn and the style of food it serves, I imagine driving as fugitives in a pick-up truck toward Mexico with accomplices on the back catching rays, fashioning Ray Ban sunglasses and passing round a bottle of whiskey. They say no to drugs and yes to tacos…
‘Liquor And Burn’ is about a hundred yards away from our friend TNQ Restaurant. Our usual food reporter Chadders, who’s worked with Antony Bourdain, Heston and Paul Heathcote to name a few, couldn’t make it today. It’s good practice to view other sites and reviews as an example of how not to run and do things. We certainly won’t be asking ‘Liquor And Burn’ for four figured queen heads.
My cousin Sophie, who LOVES Mexican style food, treated me to lunch. Sophie even lived in Mexico for a short while. She met me at the office and dragged me away from my beloved MacBook. She’s pregnant and is eating more than usual and maybe/probably/is (careful) hormonal. No liquor for Soph, then.
We arrive into the set of Death Proof (Tarrentino), soft rock music (expecting to hear Down in Mexico by The Coasters), an array of liquor lined up on the shelves behind the bar and hot sauce bottle dispensers on every table. I expected to see Kurt Russell sat at the bar munching nachos or Quentin drying glasses with a towel. There’s either been a load of effort been put into the décor or hardly any. It’s a tired looking, authentic Mexican bar with lots of grainy wood, hammered metal and American road trip references a plenty.
I was happy about the picture of the Mustang, the car I drove from Tampa Bay to South Beach, Miami in 2011. I wasn’t happy that a look-a-likey lap dancer from the Tarrentino flick wasn’t dancing on one of sturdy looking tables. Then again, I was with my baby female cousin, that would be weird.
Luck, Lust Liquor And Burn is a collage californication of America to Mexico.
Being lunch, we had a selection from the lunch special (£7.50): any burrito or taco plate with fries or salad, tortilla chips and mini (and I mean mini) guacamole & salsa pots. An awesome selection of meats to fill; crispy beef, shredded beef, buffalo chicken, dirty chicken, Hawaiian BBQ pork or artichoke heart.
Am I allowed to say fast food? I don’t know, but it came pretty darn quick and in disposable baskets.
Soph didn’t think the guacamole wasn’t freshly made. She expected, especially as the décor was so authentic, the guac be homemade. However, we’ve been told it is. The taste of the taco’s and burrito’s made up for it anyway. The fries are seasoned with paprika and dipped in the chill sauce was a good combo. I had the dirty chicken to be naughty. It was very saucy and just enough for lunch. It wasn’t enough for Sophie but we’ll eliminate some of her opinion while she’s got a bun in the oven. She ate the lemon out of my drink and then appeared to attempt eating the napkin. Erm… Soph? At least she’s not got cravings for soil or anything like that.
If it hadn’t been lunchtime and Sophie’s condition (aside from a Friday liquid lunch) we’d of been smashing and banging the Tequila and Wild Turkey. They’re trying to get hold and stock Root Beer to serve. We made do with Corona and cans of Coke, it was just fine.
There’s further, overspill seating upstairs that’s complete with a serving hatch and ‘anti vampire’ bar. JESUS LOVES TACOS. Jesus may love tacos, but he wouldn’t love the staff.
They do pretty fitting, crazy, cool named cocktails too such as “Cock & Bull Story” (£8) and “Bat Shit Crazy” (£15 for two to share), but we’ll save those for the Thursday evening review with Chadders and act like Mexican beans.
They don’t take bookings. Just turn up.
Our social life continues to be upbeat and buoyant. Social trends are seemingly coming alive for us at this time since our move from MediaCity to Deansgate and we’re always sure to be involved.
On our I love’o’meter
We’d eat, drink and dance until sunrise with Liquor And Burn. But only if we can self-serve.
100-102 High St, Northern Quarter, Manchester M4 1HP
0161 832 8644