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BEST of MCR: Breakfasts

The Confidential team takes the most important meal of the day very seriously

Published on October 20th.


BEST of MCR: Breakfasts
 

Revised and updated on Tuesday 2 September 2014.

LET’S kick off with the rules of breakfast.

The ones we are looking at are full English, Irish or Scottish in the city centre, there'll be another for the suburbs, shires and towns coming along soon. This isn't a list of ‘continental’ breakfasts either. Any full English that is served in a buffet style are also excluded. 

A 98 per cent pure pork is the same as grabbing all the worst bits of pig that need long, slow cooking and slamming them on the heat for six minutes having wrapped them in a plastic tube. Not good my friends. Not good.

As for the raw materials then sausages need filler, by the way, well seasoned. A 98 per cent pure pork is the same as grabbing all the worst bits of pig that need long, slow cooking and slamming them on the heat for six minutes having wrapped them in a plastic tube. Not good my friends. Not good. Especially when Gordo can identify ear cartilage in one specimen offered.

Black pudding. Hmm. We ain’t bleeding Scottish. We are, in the main, from Lancashire. Even people in Cheshire are just Lancastrians who made a few bob. So we require strong, robust, ballsy black puddings.

Eggs. Fresh, large, free range ideally. Fried, poached or scrambled. But, they must be large, not the tiny variety used all over the kitchen - you Dickensian misers.

Heinz Beans very acceptable. Heinz Beans livened up with a tablespoon of Heinz Tomato Sauce and a porn-star sized splash of Worcester, terrific.

Hash browns, maybe, but oh dear, we all know they are usually out of that plastic packet from the freezer. Just think, chef, of proper bubble and squeak well made.

Mushrooms? Are you one of those chefs who serve them warm and wet? Put your hands up. And now stick them in the industrial juicer please.

Bacon.

Firstly people, it has to have flavour. Blimey, there’s a thing. It needs to be on the well done side, with lots of crispy fat, ideally a mixture of back and streaky. It can be smoked, it can be plain. But it can’t be crap. And, crap my friends is what you will get in a five kilo vac-packed sloppy pale quivering mass coming off the back of a wholesaler's van.

You have some of the finest bacon in the world within twenty miles of you. So sort it.

Tomatoes if you must, but please, let’s have a few different varieties and cook the buggers all the way through.

And now breathe. 

And pause.

And dive in.

Gordo.

Here’s our list of the places that get it right. Please let us know of your favourites in the city centre and across the region so we can take a look.

Confidential loves brekkieConfidential loves brekkie

Albert's Chop House

You can prop your day up perfectly with this magnificent beauty of a belly buster. Excellent bacon, lovely homemade black pudding, cracking juicy mushroom, a slowly roasted herb crusted tomato and toast saturated with melted butter - these all flirt with the eyes, these all seduce the gob. I wrote a poem to the eggs they were so good. There are papers to read, space to stretch out and good coffee. In Albert's breakfast becomes a full-on leisure activity. It's a personal fave. £8.50. (JS)

Albert's Chop House, Albert Square, M2 5PF. 0161 834 1866.

Albert'sAlbert's

Bill’s Restaurant

A new addition that brings good runny eggs, fine steaky bacon, proper toast although it gets messy as it’s stuffed under the food. The black pudding is a bit weak, needs to go the Lancashire route, with big textures and big flavour but it was decently crispy. The mushrooms were up to scratch, the fried spuds excellent and the juice is enormous but welcome. The interior of Bill’s is cluttered but colourful and the service is with a smile, good that in the morning when nursing a big one. There’s even a big out-of-the-way terrace round the back for those who like it al fresco and quiet. £11.75 with all the trimmings. £7.95 without black pudding, beans and spuds. (G)

Bill's Restaurant, 8-12 John Dalton St, M2 6JP. 0161 834 2756

Bill'sBill's

Browns Restaurant

Charles Heathcoate's splendid former Parrs Bank (1902), an Edwardian Baroque red sandstone number with such an opulent green marble and rich mahogany belly that you're in real danger of forgetting the whole breakfast episode and instead just stroll around stroking things (not the servers, they don't like that). The traditional breakfast here is 'decent' with a lone sausage and rasher ringed by eggs cooked to order, a duo of sturdy and slightly wet mushrooms, black pudding and a couple of sweet grilled tommies and toast. Decent. But Brown's makes the Best Of purely for the glorious surroundings. A place where Mum can 'put her face on' and go for brunch. Fancy. £9 for traditional breakfast (weekdays is two for one on the full works breakfasts). (DB)

Browns, 1 York Street, M2 2AW. 0161 819 1055.

BrownsBrowns

Cicchetti

Cicchetti has given all kudos to the Brits for its ‘Great Cicchetti breakfast’, humbly admitting that when it comes to serving up bountiful brekkies the English are ‘the best in the world’. In turn the English respectively tip their hats to all the wonders Italians do with pasta. The Great Cicchetti breakfast steers firmly away from a continental style with two voluptuous and full flavoured pork and leek sausages, sauteed mushrooms, hash brown, tomato, black pudding and bacon. Baked beans weren't missed. All for £7.95 with tea or coffee. (LB)

House of Fraser, 98-116 Deansgate, M3 2QC. 0161 839 2233.

CicchettiCicchetti

Giraffe

Chains such as Giraffe aren’t usually good at breakfasts, but this one was. Special mention for the eggs, crisp underneath, sprinkled with chopped fresh chives on top. Excellent, grilled sourdough toast, good butter. An underlying whiff of a Kentucky wood fire adds a super layer of experience not expected. Liked it enormously. Big mugs for the tea please. £8.50, tea £1.95. (G)

Hardman Square, off Deansgate, M3 3AB. 0161 839 0009.

GiraffeGiraffe

Gorilla

Seems fitting, that for a venue named after the world’s largest primate, this bar-cum-diner-cum-club should serve up a breakfast with the potential to burst one. Scooping ‘Bar of the Year’ at the Manchester Food and Drink Awards 2013, Gorilla has quickly established itself as one of Manchester’s finest destination bars. Still, come dayspring and it may not even cross your mind for brekkie. You do yourself an injustice. Here are two reasons why: the Royal Breakfast is not only fit for a King (a fat one), it’d feed the jesters too. With double everything, the hash browns are arguably the city’s best, the only misfire being undergrilled tomatoes. Secondly, this savvy lot keep breakfast rolling until 4pm so you needn’t get rolling till late. Sleep it off. £11. (DB)

Gorilla, 54-56 Whitworth Street West, M1 5WW. 0161 407 0301.

GorillaGorilla

Great John Street Hotel

Fabulous tea in a fabulous pot. The Irish breakfast is phenomenal, with white pudding as well as black, which felt, even if it wasn’t, homemade. Sausages full of flavour, right amount of filling. Loads of toast, jam and marmalade (particularly good). The setting is class. Mushroom needs a mention, as does the remarkable service. Still, for the price you'd hope so. £18 for a full breakfast, you can also dive into the breakfast bar as well (G)

Great John Street, M3 4FD. 0161 831 3211.

Great John Street HotelGreat John Street Hotel

Hansfords, Arndale Markets

This bakery and delicatessen in the Arndale Food Markets makes the cut as it's the only entry on this list where you can get as full as a fat lady's sock for less than a fiver. Ok the breakfast isn't going to win any gold rosettes, it's a canteen breakfast pulled from hot school dinner trays, but show me anywhere else in the city centre where you can score seven breakfast items and a builder's tea for £4.50 and I'll show you the nads of a Nandi Bear. £4.50 for seven breakfast items and a drink. (DB)

Arndale Food Markets, Arndale Shopping Centre, City Centre, M4 3AD.

HansfordsHansfords

Home Sweet Home 

Northern Quarter’s best café is not solely resigned to forcing so much cake down your gullet (400kg a week) that your nipples pop off only to be replaced by two little cherries. No Sir. Amongst all the other plates, HSH does a cracking propa’ English breakfast with two frisbees of black pudding, perfectly-browned breakfast potatoes, a locally-sourced sausage as thick as Big Foot’s dangler and a rugged mattress of home baked sourdough bread to mop up all the eggy, beany, mushroomy flotsam. Lovely. A great NQ fill for £7.50. (DB)

Home Sweet Home, 49-51 Edge Street, M4 1HW. 0161 244 9424.

Home Sweet HomeHome Sweet Home

Koffee Pot

Very good, workman-like caff in the Northern Quarter, specialises in men with beards and pale women with dyed red hair and thick black tights. Gordo has been going for five years and is now on nodding terms with Rio Ferdinand as well as Elbow and their 3,568 best mates. Great tea, in mugs. Perfect egg, beans a bit runny, low rent sausage (well tasty though) but bacon needs a step up, sometimes slightly soapy. Magic for hangovers. Everyone loves you on a Sunday morning, but leave Tuesdays alone. £6 for the breakfast with tea and toast. (G)

21 Hilton Street, Stevenson Square, City, M1 1JJ. 

Koffee PotKoffee Pot

The Malmaison

Legendary food and booze hotel that always puts on a great breakfast. Gordo has even eaten off the buffet here. This includes the German wet muesli stuff that you can throw prunes on to ensure the end of ten pint Guinness blockages don't ruin the day. Eggs always good, but the black puddings are from across Hadrian's Wall and thus weak little fools. The bacon is finished on the griddle and is riddled with big, chunky flavour. Great coffee as well. Steep at £15.95 for the full breakfast. (G)

1 Gore Street, City, M1 3AQ. 0161 278 1001.

MalmaisonMalmaison

Moose 

Probably the best MCR breakfast spot you've never been to. It’s such a good ‘un that we had to bend the rules somewhat to squeeze it in (by creating our own English breakfast from the Mighty Moose house favourite by adding chipolata sausages and a tomato). Moose breakfast fare is unashamedly American, with portions so mighty you need karabiners to come out on top. The mound of homemade potato hash with garlic, onion and Dijon mustard with over-easy eggs coupled with delicious refried beans (better than baked, really) on toast is dreamy, and heavier than the celestial sphere of Atlas. Top drawer. £10.50 (due to additional items). (DB)

Moose Coffee, 20 York Street, M2 3BB. 0161 228 7994.

MooseMoose

Superstore 

The Superstore’s super breakfast is biblical. Much like Noah’s ark, the animals (and the non-meat) come in two-by-two. Two sausages, two bacon rashers, two eggs, two hash browns, two grilled tomatoes, two slices of toast and two field mushrooms that’d probably achieve a good 60m in the discus throw, such is their span. The only issue is that the teensy cute cup of beans doesn’t possess the necessary spill to deal with the plate’s bravado. Beans, beans, good for the heart, thrice more beans I say, and it’ll be a work of art. Oh and breakfast ends at midday? Come on now. We're all grown-ups here. £9.50 (includes tea, coffee or juice). (DB) 

Superstore Grocer & Kitchen, Smithfield Building, Tib Street, M4 1NB. 0161 834 3303.

SuperstoreSuperstore

Terrace

Our fourth NQ breakfast entry, suggested below by a reader - gold star for you - is only a sausage throw away from the other three in what Quarter-buffs (the lot behind MCR's St Peter's Quarter, St John's Quarter and Civic Quarter) are now calling the 'Breakfast Quarter'. Speaking of sausages, Terrace's duo of bangers are thicker than Santiago's thumb, and a whole lot tastier. The black pudding was a marvel, dark, sturdy and ever so sweet, the eggs were poached to perfection (I prefer an option on the eggs, mind) and the hash brown put up a crunchy resistance on the outside with lovely white fluffy innards. The only disappointment were the rashers, which were tasty but tough and dry. The tommies probably needed longer. Still, a cracking start to the day, or in this case 2.50pm (they serve brekkie till 3pm) with toast and tea for under a tenner. Full works is £9.50, smaller brekkie is £7.50.

Terrace, 43 Thomas Street, Northern Quarter, M4 1NA. 0161 819 2345.

TerraceTerrace

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160 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

What no Harvey Nichs?!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
RamboNovember 1st 2012.

I've recently had the Harvey Nichs - eggs benedict and corned beef hash to die for. Yum. Great place early on a Sunday. Gets my vote for def.

GordoNovember 2nd 2012.

no full english...

Lynda Moyo shared this on Facebook on November 1st 2012.
Poster BoyNovember 1st 2012.

An impossible task. Well written.

One of life's occasional treats used to be the British Rail 'fry-up' -the train service might have been awful but the full English always seemed to be served with pride. And you could order kedgeree.

Ps; Heinz Baked Beans don't taste of Heinz anymore. Something to do with the Salt Police...

8 Responses: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 1st 2012.

Good point re the beans; that why the chefs can do a helluva lot to perk them up with simple additions. I was taught the spoonfull of tomato sauce and then four or five splashes of Worcester that transforms them into something really interesting. My mom used to boil them down a bit and then add milk when i was a kid, that was interesting.

Poster BoyNovember 1st 2012.

'Mom'! 'Mom'! -like hash browns, 'Mom' is an American affectation. In 'Lancashire' we call the old dear 'Mum'. Just saying like...

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

No MAM is the proper Northern way.

pollolocoNovember 2nd 2012.

Salt and pepper, nob of butter and cook on a low heat for 10 minutes.....lush!!!

crisbyNovember 2nd 2012.

What's English about baked beans?? The Koffee Pot give me an extra egg instead of beans, which is decent of them. And makes it more English.

AnonymousNovember 5th 2012.

Exactly anonymous-It is Mam if you are a proper Northerner

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

I think baked beans is well English.. you can get eggs for breakfast in most places but you struggle to find a breakfast with baked beans outside of the UK... I bloody love beans Mmmmmmmmm Heinz five beans with a splash or 10 of Worcester... nom!

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

Beans with a good dollop of hp sauce mixed in while they're cooking, or some dried chilli flakes. Perks them right up.

bigearsNovember 1st 2012.

Beans in a fecking bowl?? Hate that but i do love pre buttered toast as its always melted

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

The Virgin train experience is so true. The best part of this article!!

Please tweet Richard Branson with a link to this... I for one would love to see what he says!

Chris BamfordNovember 1st 2012.

I like the Virgin breakfasts to be honest. The hash browns are good and frankly what do you expect at 100mph on a calor gaz camping stove you ungrateful turd. If you got your fat arse into gear and booked a few days in advance you can get to Euston and back for about £120... so stop wasting your investors money and get your shit sorted. Erm... ;) x

2 Responses: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 1st 2012.

What Hash Browns??!! You've been getting Hash Browns? Is your name Oliver?

Chris BamfordNovember 1st 2012.

And black pudding with no skin on. I get on at Wilmslow though... we probably get better service in Cheshire ;)

Mark HaireNovember 1st 2012.

Banyan Tree deserves a mention - £8.50 for the big breakfast with a drink chucked in. Fat juicy sausages and great eggs.

A barnstormer!

3 Responses: Reply To This...
Jon BlackNovember 1st 2012.

I concur. Banyan Tree does an awesome full English - and has the best teapots in town. When Gordo embarks on his burger review (surely imminent) suggest he starts there with their chicken burger. All thriller, no filler!

Mark HaireNovember 2nd 2012.

I reckon the Lamb Burger's even better - massive slab of meat with a squashed bhaji on top. Unbelievable scenes

AlfSeptember 2nd.

Is Banyan and Superstore not the same brekkie?

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

We still do the bread on the picture, Gordo!

Ellie - Marketing & Events Manager, Home Sweet Home

4 Responses: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 1st 2012.

Probably only because I complained!

MaggieNovember 1st 2012.

Yippee! that's where I'm going then.......Proper bread!

PS for reet good sour dough bread, try The Restaurant Bar and Grill....Proper bread!

crisbyNovember 2nd 2012.

Proper bread isn't authentic. Warburtons is on the mark for buttered toast, and essential for a proper bacon butty (honourable mention for the Koffee Pot here though the best bacon butty in the world is at Pete's Eats in llanberis, near Snowdon.

MaggieDecember 5th 2012.

Peasant!

Dean RedfearnNovember 1st 2012.

It was The Parlour, not the Lead Station, that was awarded Best Sunday Lunch in the Observer.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Dan McGlynnNovember 1st 2012.

Indeed it was. Well researched journalism at its finest here!

Peter MaxsonNovember 1st 2012.

Lead station won best breakfast about 7 yrs ago

SteamyNovember 1st 2012.

Koffee Pot is the best for quality v cost

Best I have had full stop is Malmaison by a mile

May have to pay a visit to Home Sweet Home this weekend, with the exception of the floppy looking black pudding that looks good.

bigearsNovember 1st 2012.

@deanredfearn - read the article again - doesn't say it won the best sunday dinner, was just in the list

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Dan McGlynnNovember 1st 2012.

But it didn't?

Dan McGlynnNovember 1st 2012.

*wasn't

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

Saint and Scholars breakfast is AMAZING. The white pudding is the best i've tasted. Its even worth the stern service from the old bloke!!

Dan McGlynnNovember 1st 2012.

The Didsbury Kitchen needs to be in there too.

David NewtonNovember 1st 2012.

why does Katsouris not feature???

2 Responses: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 1st 2012.

their sausages need a lot of work IMHO

DavidNovember 2nd 2012.

That is actually true. Really bitty. Weird. Rest of it is good though.

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

Cicchetti is let down by the quality of the toast and lack of beans, crucial to achieve the right balance of moisture!

Dean RedfearnNovember 1st 2012.

@BIGEARS It wasn't in the list either: www.guardian.co.uk/…/sunday-lunch-ofm-awards-2012…

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

Home Sweet Home looks ace.. i know where i'll be on Saturday

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

The best breakfast ever was Time for Tea in Didsbury before Jemni took it over. Levenshulme Antique Market is not bad.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
MaggieNovember 1st 2012.

Yep, had a quick lunch there when I was shopping for antiques (Get me! And i don't even live in Cheshire!), it was very nice so I'll try brekkie next time.......well, antiques don't buy themselves don't you know....

The Manchester ManFebruary 28th 2013.

I'm also a fan of Levenshulme Antiques Market's breakfast. POD's is v.good too.

Hero
Vikki FranksNovember 1st 2012.

Ear cartilage?! Vom!!!!

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

I'm also a fan of prebuttered toast. I love toast with my butter :-)

Greg ReideNovember 1st 2012.

I'm not sure how a breakfast touching £17 can ever be considered the best.

1 Response: Reply To This...
DavidNovember 2nd 2012.

For £17 it friggin' should be.

Dave ThackerayNovember 1st 2012.

Why did the camera get decidedly shakier when the food was brought in at that Great John Street Hotel?

And how can they justify the price? Man alive - I know the overheads are stiff but I'm floppy at the thought of paying anything over a tenner for a bit of brek, no matter what they do with my sausage.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 1st 2012.

Dave, most hotel breakfasts are around this price, but they do include the, normally, dreaded Continental. GJ Street is actually a great one and is included so you can eat yourself huge. Fabulous fruit on it>

crisbyNovember 2nd 2012.

Quite right Dave! For that money I can breakfast for a week at the Koffee Pot (that's 3 days; rest of week you need muesli to get your cholesterol back down)

GeorgeSeptember 12th.

Now, David, please do tell me, have you actually stayed at the GJS Hotel and had breakfast there, or have you just poped in and sampled their breakfast? I stay there very often and the breakfast is a MEAL and worth every penny, sorry pound!!! And such a great ambiance...You pay for the quality, and at GJS it is all what one wants for quality breakfast!!!

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

Where is Cafe North?!

4 Responses: Reply To This...
Chris HawkeNovember 3rd 2012.

Shudehill, last time I visited.
I don't mind them but also don't feel they belong on a "best of" list. Service can be also be quite.... variable.

Debbie BridgeJanuary 21st 2013.

Do give Cafe North a try. Consistently good breakfasts, super staff, good service.

AlfSeptember 2nd.

Yeah agreed Cafe North could easily have beaten a few if not most on here!

EditorialSeptember 2nd.

Cafe North was tried but didn't bowl us over, sorry. Ed.

Andrew HanleyNovember 1st 2012.

yes Cafe North fantastic

Mark WhileNovember 1st 2012.

FYG Deli breakfasts in the Northern Quarter are really good too!!

SaqNovember 1st 2012.

I love Chai Latte, the only halal full English in Manchester! Taken a few friends there and despite it being Turkey bacon and Beef sausages they have said it's the closest they've ever tasted and enjoyed it.

And love my toast pre buttered too!

JoanNovember 1st 2012.

A really useful guide Gordo. Been promising myself a Cicchetti breakfast for ages now, but rarely make it past Katsouris. Their small, i.e. normal, breakfast plus a drink gives you change from a fiver, so surprised to see it missing. I'm with Dave Thackery on the price point. Will treat myself to a Cicchetti start to the day soon.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
PeachySeptember 2nd.

I agree about Katsouris and Im amazed that it isnt included. Wide number of options, superb quality and at a brilliant price. Sunday mornings in Katsouris is a revelation! Try it!!!

EditorialSeptember 3rd.

We tried Katsouris Peachy, but it didn't make the cut. Perhaps an off day. Ed.

AnonymousOctober 12th.

The staff at Katsouris are awful and rude, completely takes away from any positives about that place.

Yvonne BarryNovember 1st 2012.

Totally disagree with Gt John Street being the best; when I went it was lukewarm at best; the bacon was super salty and dry. Mushrooms were cold - vastly overpriced and a stuck up atmosphere. Gorilla gets my vote every time.

Yvonne BarryNovember 1st 2012.

Also a shout out to Jam Street Cafe in Chorlton; really good breakfast

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AlfSeptember 2nd.

Here here!

EditorialSeptember 2nd.

As mentioned in the intro, this is a city centre list. The suburbs and shires shall be listed separately in the future. Thanks. Ed.

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

What about Thyme out in West Didsbury? The "Full Didsbury" I think it's called is simply incredible. Reasonably priced too.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
Jeremy SmithNovember 1st 2012.

Same for me, fresh eggs from their own chickens as well

UrbaneFoxNovember 9th 2012.

The breakfast in Thyme is amazing!

AnonymousDecember 25th 2013.

My favourite

Prince_HarmingNovember 1st 2012.

Were you.... drunk, when you submitted this?

1 Response: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 1st 2012.

was who drunk?

Mark OwenNovember 1st 2012.

Well I experienced the Wetherspoons 'Large' Breakfast this morning. Tasteless sausages, drooping bacon, soaking mushrooms. Shudder just remembering the (small) part of it I actually was able to eat.

Oh and the toast with the FROZEN margarine tubs.

Crap anyway.

Great brekkie with those turkey/bacon slice thingys in a lil cafe in Stockport a few days ago however! £3.90 including large OJ and toast with the offer of free top ups.

the Whalley RangerNovember 1st 2012.

Hahaha Virgin Rail! Gordo, is this your case for nationalisation?

Sylvia HoNovember 1st 2012.

I love Thyme Out in West Didsbury and Northern Star Deli in Chorlton :)

AnonymousNovember 1st 2012.

Tee hee, now I know Manchester has disappeared up its own jacksy - seventeen quid for a ' fry - up' - jeez, you lot crack me up.....

Liam ANovember 1st 2012.

Don't forget the breakfast at Sam's Chop House! Went a couple of weekends ago (based on a mention of their breakfasts on this site) and it was amazing! We were the only customers in the place at 11.30 on a Sunday morning, though, so seems to be a bit of a well kept secret!

Graeme WrightNovember 1st 2012.

Koffee Pot has never disappointed...honest food, well cooked and great vfm...£16.95 for brekkie? Am I missing something here?

1 Response: Reply To This...
AlfSeptember 2nd.

Yes Koffee pot is great, sausages are questionable, and you come out stinking. They also use cheap marg instead of butter, pre buttered soggie toast aint great.

Hero
Swiss JamesNovember 2nd 2012.

Gordo at his best here, he must be a morning person.

AnonymousNovember 2nd 2012.

I adore the Royal brekkie at Gorilla - have a soft spot for the Koffee Pot too ... must try some of the others on this list, though £17 for a full English seems a tad frisky

SmittyNovember 2nd 2012.

Fantastic to see that Irish staple, the white pudding, making it into the Great John St breakfast. Probably worth the price for that alone. For those wondering what white pudding is, it is a mystery shrouded in an enigma that only one 94-year-old woman in Connemara truly knows the answer to.

Also good to see no beans. Why do the English put beans with breakfast?!?

However, what would be truly great would be somewhere that does the true Ulster Fry, which also includes potato bread (which is what is on offer in the Lead Station - that is not a potato "cake" Gordo, you big jessie) and a soda farl fried to within an inch of its life. You'll end up in the MRI, but as your family gather round your death bed you will say it was worth it...

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousNovember 2nd 2012.

Need a bit of wet, don't you

Luke GilmoreNovember 2nd 2012.

Why are all of these best of surveys done in the city center, Chorlton and the south of Manchester, no wonder students, tourist and new comers to the city only go up and down Oxford Rd.

RidgurdNovember 2nd 2012.

One vital bit of info missing: how many of these are actually open at breakfast time? I assume the hotels are and I think Koffee Pot is an early starter, but walking past great cafes that do 'all day breakfasts' but are closed on my way to work is really frustrating: 'all day' except before 10am in most cases!

AnonymousNovember 3rd 2012.

The knott! Fantastic breakfast!

NorthernGeezerNovember 3rd 2012.

There is an art in preparing and serving a GOOD full English and it starts with the quality of ingredients, so yes, PROPER bacon, not pre-packed shyte.
Sausages, only pork will do, no extra flavours such as leeks, or Lincolnshire, or god forbid................BEEF!
Black pudding, unfortunatley usually shyte quality served anywhere i've had it, cheap, over cooked, and not quite the correct ratio of fat to 'other ingredient'.
Proper black pudding has to be sourced from within 200 yards maximum from a certain market in Bury.
Agree on the toast, Warbys is great for a bacon butty, but sourdough or soda bread does the business with the full monty, oh yeah, i want to butter my own, making sure it IS butter and not from a 2 kilo tub of marg!
Agree with the old silver served brekkys on British Rail, and if you want a really good full English for around a fiver, try Johns Diner in Trafford Park.
My Sunday morning treat..............4 rashers of smoked, topped with FRIED sliced tomatoes, pillowed between BUTTERED rounds of 2 slices of Mr Warbys finest medium.

Chris HawkeNovember 3rd 2012.

Appreciate this article, there's a few new options to chew over. Surely there's more to breakfast than "English breakfast" though. I'll grant its a good yardstick by which to measure a place.
I endorse of the attention to beans and tomato. Not be underestimated in getting the right balance. Might I suggest that side spinach also be a contender? Am ambivalent about sausage and I agree that hash browns are the work of the devil and should be stopped. I can't believe my own sister likes hash browns. Surely one of us is adopted.

NorthernGeezerNovember 5th 2012.

SPINACH........................FFS!!!!

AnonymousNovember 7th 2012.

KIM BY THE SEA!

Gary LyonsNovember 7th 2012.

Home Sweet Home for me, not only was the toast awesome but the spiced sausage meatball added an extra dimension and I now feel that every breakfast should have one. Unfortunately, they don't.

CH027ONNovember 8th 2012.

Disappointed not to see Trof and Katsouris feature both provide a delectable full english with a vegetarian option. Trof was voted the best place in to have a breakfast by a national newspaper.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Jim WhiteNovember 10th 2012.

Isn't trof and gorilla basically the same? It would be overkill to have them both in

Mark GarnerNovember 14th 2012.

Nationals are useless at local stuff outside of London

Ben WissettNovember 14th 2012.

Comedy option: a deep-fried heartburnfest from the Abergeldie. I daren't even think what Gordo's reaction to that would be.

1 Response: Reply To This...
GordoNovember 14th 2012.

Been. Very strange. Huge. You do know you have ingested a half brick of lard...

ShaunDecember 4th 2012.

Being somewhat expert of breakfast's in Manchester my vote goes to Saints and Scholars in Didsbury.

HelenFrancescaDecember 18th 2012.

You fucking funny fucker.

Virgin Trains should be ashamed of themselves - not least for charging £406 return to fucking London. You can travel the length and breadth of Europe for half that! Next time stop at M&S at the station for breakfast most right minded people. It's a train for pity's sake!

Well done on your 'research' efforts Gordo.

(I wouldn't be too pleased if someone presented me with potato wedges for breakfast though).

HelenFrancescaDecember 18th 2012.

Ps - Chorlton Eatery does a superb breakfast.

ChimpychewJanuary 3rd 2013.

Thyme Out in Didsbury, amazing breakfasts and a great selection - Didsbury Breakfast, Foodie's Breakfast, Healthy Breakfast, all cracking!

Stephen DouglasJanuary 7th 2013.

Another vote for Thyme Out - although it's closed for refurbishment at the moment so we dashed down to Didsbury to try The Deli on Wilmslow Road. Not bad, although the scrambled eggs were completely tasteless.

DavidJanuary 10th 2013.

There is one thing really lacking in Manchester,especially considering the huge amount of Asian restaurants in Manchester and that's breakfast From that part of the world.The Coffee shops in Thailand and Malaysia serve really great breakfast choices.
There is one Filipinino cafe in Bolton called Sandok that serves a good breakfast with fried rice and corn beef,and tea or coffee for £5.A real bargain.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
AshbergMarch 3rd 2013.

Fried rice and corn beef for breakfast?

Chris HawkeMarch 4th 2013.

Good Dim Sum? where do I find it? I did not much like Glamorous or Tai Wu unfortunately.

BaconSeptember 2nd.

Agreed - would love some Malaysian (or Singaporean, depending whose side you're on) kaya toast and coffee! Regarding full English though, looking forward to suburb editions. Hope the Chorlton Eatery and Woodies Cafe (Salford) get a mention.

StephJanuary 21st 2013.

Whatever happened to these Best of Manchester features? Thought they were going to be a regular occurrence but they seem to have stopped after three.

Jonathan SchofieldJanuary 21st 2013.

Steph, Best of Manchester City Centre pubs this week

Poster BoyJanuary 24th 2013.

and there's me expecting "Best of Barbados"...

NoelFebruary 4th 2013.

£17 for a breakfast ur avin a turkish mate.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AshbergMarch 3rd 2013.

That's what I though! Who pays that? plus no beans? What's that all about. No beans = a place that thinks its too posh

avoFebruary 26th 2013.

Why ha this top ten climbed its way to the top of the food and drink stories from 2012?

Gordo, you should do one on dim sum and oriental small plates.

AnonymousFebruary 28th 2013.

Oxford Road Cafe in Altrincham should be in with a shout. fit waitresses as well

Ash bergMarch 3rd 2013.

I see you're in first class? That will push up your ticket price mucker....save your money on an ordinary ticket then you can have money left to buy a gregg's at the station

Richard FretwellMarch 7th 2013.

Recent brekkie at Malmaison was a big disappointment. Service was dreadfully slow, tea and coffee taking forever to arrive. The breakfast looked like it had been cooked in a microwave rather than a grill or griddle. So much so the sausage looked virtually raw. Toast was more like warm bread rather than anything resembling properly browned toast. Also the bloody muzak was too loud especially for a Sunday morning when everyone was sporting a fairly heft hang-over. For nearly 15 quid this was bobbins.

1 Response: Reply To This...
JanusxxxFriday, November 14th.

And the Sunday dinner there also a big letdown, starters very good everything else over or undercooked and 19.95 !

Peter CainMarch 16th 2013.

Well Gordo, following your review we went to Cicchetti for Breakfast a couple of weeks ago, it was just as you said and we left very satisfied. Went again last week and whilst not quite as good (nothing ever seems to be second time round) still satisfied. Went again this morning (Saturday 16th March) ordered my breakfast explained I did not want bacon / tomato or black pudding, (wasn’t trying to get replacements but just didn’t want it to go to waste) ordered fried eggs over easy. Breakfast came all ingredients (Bacon etc) on plate eggs would not have looked out of place on John Waynes belt (Bullets) and all the food was so dry it was clear they had made the breakfast prior and it had just been sat under a very hot grill. I didn’t mention the bacon etc just that the eggs were not what I had ordered, waiter apologized and went to change it, fresh breakfast arrived several minutes later this time the eggs were what I call snotty (white & the yoke) waiter asked if I would like sauce, II asked for tomato sauce. I again explained about the eggs, he took it away and again employed the “hot grill” he brought me “brown” sauce and returned my breakfast in a similar state to the 1st one (dry & bullets like eggs) when asked if everything was alright I said I surrendered and would just like some butter with my toast. If I am ever in that area again I will avoid “Cicchetti” like the plague. It seems like they can not cope with being popular, you may want to visit again Gordo and update your review.

NorthernGeezerMay 17th 2013.

I've just got over 3 days of having "the two bob bits"................. wonder if a full english will sort me out on Sunday morning?

AdcroJuly 10th 2013.

17 quid for breakfast? I'll stick to the greasy spoons ;)

EmmerageAugust 23rd 2013.

I love your work, but for goodness' sake, why can't anyone in Manchester comprehend that meat+eggs+token veg is not the only kind of "good" breakfast? I like a fry-up as much as the next person, but could also go for a few of these: a good veggie breakfast (NOT vegetarian meat-alternatives!); a standard cream-cheese bagel; a bacon AND egg roll that comes with some green (or fresh chutney) on anything-other-than-a-white-bap; a decent omelette or, heaven forbid, a benedict that doesn't have hollandaise that comes from a jar; a proper continental (aka: a plate loaded with quality fruit, cheese and pastries, with all the juice and coffee you can eat); or just a standard bowl of porridge or muesli with fresh fruit, nuts, seeds, and honey. Nomz. I know the usual frenzied faithfuls - Barbican, Katsouris, Trof, and so on - but where are the rest? Any suggestions?!

GordoAugust 23rd 2013.

err, it was the ten best British breakfasts.

CasDecember 24th 2013.

I can't believe Cicchetti is on here, it has to be one of the worst places in Manchester to eat not just because of the poor food, but also because of the terrible lay-out, rubbish atmosphere, obnoxious staff, pitiful choice and lazy service!! If you manage to get a table in this place that doesn't end up with you near enough sitting on somebody else's lap then well done you, then, if you manage to find a waiter or waitress that actually looks like they a), want to be there, b) haven't just woken up from a drunken stupor or c), doesn't look at you like you've just s*** in their coffee, then you're doing extremely well!! Definitely riding the coat-tails of their bigger brother across the road.

1 Response: Reply To This...
GordoDecember 27th 2013.

Bit harsh, that Cas!

shabob1January 16th.

As mentioned earlier, whats the point of places that don't open until 11.30.a.m. if they serve breakfast? Gorrilla for example

Prince_HarmingSeptember 2nd.

What happened to Cafe North up Shudehill? We began a stag day there a few weeks ago with a full English and it wasn't only a damned fine breakfast but surprisingly cheap :D

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

EATS at University Place, Oxford Road. Nine breakfast items, plus toast and a regular hot drink. All for £5 [£3.95 for a six item]. 30p per slice of toast. Their quote; "Our breakfasts are delicious and fresh and most importantly excellent value for money! Start your day with one of our full, hot and hearty English breakfasts made daily in our kitchens using the freshest ingredients and only free range eggs. If a lighter continental option is more your style then grab a pastry, slice of buttery toast, porridge pot or a fruit salad. Wash it all down with a cup of our special Fairtrade coffee, selection of tea or a refreshingly cold, fresh fruit juice!" Beat that!

6 Responses: Reply To This...
EditorialSeptember 2nd.

In the same way that Banyan Tree was omitted, EATS is a hop too far out of the city centre boundaries. Good suggestion though, could be one for the non-city centre brekkie list. Ed.

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

That's great, but if you could put your or ManCon's interpretation of why constitutes city centre Manchester then that would be helpful on this topic. As it takes at least ten minutes to walk from University Place to Central Library, I assume Castlefield, Shudehill/NQ and Piccadilly Train station area won't be included either?

JuiceSeptember 2nd.

Nobody considers that end of Oxford Road to be city centre, Anon. Castlefield, Shudehill and Piccadilly ARE in the city centre, their distance from the Library is irrelevant. Nonsense comment.

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

@Juice As Ed just stated, Anon's referring to a 'hop too far' as being a geography issue and therefore University Place 'is' in the city centre...so...nonsense comment? Who are the 'nobody' you refer to BTW?

EditorialSeptember 2nd.

Roughly the boundaries lay along Mancunian Way and Great Ancoats Street. Thanks. Ed.

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

You've said you'll be doing the 'suburbs, shires and towns' later, so will you be covering the breakfast eateries along the scum ring too ie. just over the Mancunian Way/Great Ancoats Street boundry?

EmmerageSeptember 2nd.

I understand, especially with all the qualifiers at the top, that it's about English breakfasts. And I respect that. Sort of... But. I really, really, really want to know about other best breakfasts. Best brunches. Best American style. Best pancakes. Best coffee/bakery pairings. All the other kinds of breakfasts one might want. This updated article just reminds me of what isn't there - and maybe, what we should be demanding from establishments. Just think about doing a bit on fresh, less meaty (though still bacony); perhaps sweeter (though not sugar coated); slightly snobby (but not too expensive) OTHER breakfasts. Please?!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
GordoSeptember 2nd.

do I get the idea you quite like breakfasts?

Nardia LloydSeptember 2nd.

I agree!

JimSeptember 2nd.

Terrace in the NQ needs sampling for this article. Best sausage in Manchester and poached eggs. A very good breakfast.

1 Response: Reply To This...
EditorialSeptember 2nd.

Good suggestion. Leave it with us. Ed.

Johno at SpiceSeptember 2nd.

what about the OX on Liverpool St?

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

Since reading the "cheap eats" article the other week, my vote goes to Linda's Pantry. Great value!

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

Gorilla every time for me.

AliceSeptember 2nd.

The Double Dutch in Moose is insane, and sheer indulgence. Granted, not a full English, but still amazing!

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

At the risk of being labelled a twat by a range of even bigger twats: No mention of veggie breakfasts? Disappointing 4/10

4 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

I don't think a bowl of cereal at your place would be considered as a 'Best of Manchester' breakfast. Ridiculous 0/10

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

I had a brilliant veggie breakfast in the Lass O'Gowrie a few years back. It was piled high with all the usual stuff but it was topped off with some Welsh Rarebit. Myself and my non veggie friend were very impressed with it.

EditorialSeptember 2nd.

Anon we do have a Best Of Veggie eateries in the pipeline. Worry not. Ed

AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

Cheers Ed, look forward to it.

Nardia LloydSeptember 2nd.

How about a decent reviews of breakfast menus? Not everyone wants the full English (or similar) and I happen to believe that the true indicator of quality breakfasts is a range of quality options and choices such as the menu at Yorks Bakery in Birmingham or the Front Room in penzance. Can we have some creativity please ? We expect it at other times of the day why not breakfast??

Paul CarterSeptember 2nd.

What about 47 King Street or whatever it's called? Had a decent eggs benedict there a couple of weeks ago and I'm sure they did a full English on their menu.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousSeptember 2nd.

Good shout. It's excellent

Brent HartleySeptember 2nd.

Vivid lounge on Great Ancoats Street do the most incredible breakfast with truly superb hash browns.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousSeptember 3rd.

agreed - yummy and good value too

Georgina BreezeSeptember 3rd.

Superstore is the best breakfast without a doubt, they make their own black pudding and its really tasty!

Michael IngallSeptember 5th.

Go to the lowry hotel, order srambled eggs, insist they make them fresh, order bacon well done, or a piece of dark smoked salmon, a pot of English breakfast, and you will have the best breakfast in any establishment in the world, well other than Stuzio in Kendal Street W2, where eggs are flown daily from their farm in Tuscany!

1 Response: Reply To This...
Sharyn CaseOctober 14th.

I beg to differ, breakfast at the Dunkirk Cafe just outside Ellesmere Port was the best - full English (sausage, egg, bacon, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, kidneys) plus a proper mug of tea/coffee (none of this fancy crap of teapots and cups) with free refills for £3.50...spot on and well deserved after a night out clubbing it :) shame they shut it down and shoved a flipping cash and carry in its place!

MollySeptember 9th.

to pay that for an F E B you must be very rich or pots for rags, try any wetherspoons, quality and sensible price. red molly

PiemanSeptember 11th.

Triangle cut toast with a breakfast is my biggest complaint. Keep it square, please!

AnonymousSeptember 25th.

Any of these places open at around 0800h on a Saturday. Need an early start and most seem to open at 0900h. Maybe Hansfords opens at that time?

JanusxxxFriday, November 14th.

Didsbury kitchen lapwing lane or saints and scholars didsbury village x.

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