Cafe’s these days are a little posher than the ones I used to get lasagne and chips from on my lunch breaks in college. Served in polystyrene trays with plastic forks that couldn’t stab through a cloud even if they wanted to.
Nowadays, (I say this like I’m old, or at least above 30 and can refer to the ‘good old days’ – I’m not), cafe’s have somewhat of an Australian luxury about them.
You’d be dumbfounded if the menu didn’t boast the bright hues of an avo on toast or an acai bowl that looks like it would supply a weeks worth of nutrients in one small colourful bowl.
Whatever they serve, WE LOVE ‘EM. So here’s a handy list of the best ones where you can get avo on toast, including perfectly poached eggs and maybe a sweet treat delivered right to your door…
It goes without saying that I’d put this top of my list. It is by far my personal favourite spot for brunch in Manchester and I know I’m not the only one when I give it that high praise. If you don’t know by now, get to know and order below. Strongly recommend some Natas too.
In Lockdown 1.0 Trove became a Sunday staple, a nice walk around the marina with one of those fantastic croissants and a coffee? Bliss. Their online shop now boasts a good range of Christmas stock – some only available for pre-order – including deliciously festive full cakes. They’re open every day for takeaway or are now on Deliveroo (woop!).
Just Between Friends
The most favourite cafe slash coffee shop in the Finest office is the excellent Just Between Friends on Tib Street. They’ve been sliding open their ‘hatch’ ever since the first lockdown, and they’re the best place to go for a proper good cup of coffee and cheeky little morning treat. Always with a smile too which works wonders for grumpy morning people.
You might not have heard of Coffee B yet but they’ve been offering up coffee and breakfast delivery and collection long before the first lockdown was even a tiny spark in the mind of Boris Johnson. They offer up everything you could ever desire from a cafe, coffee, tea, cakes, freshly baked pastries… but LOADS more on top of that. There’s beers, wines, loaded platters, ‘chunky’ toasts with a variety of toppings and best of all – ‘Winter Warmers’ courtesy of legendary Japanese restaurant – Umezushi.
Foundation Coffee House
The A-boards outside will tell you and I’m telling you now – Foundation are open for take out coffee. Yep, you can pop into any one of their branches and grab yourself a lovely hot drink or freshly baked treats to really get your day off to a good start.
Another Heart to Feed
The newest Australian ‘style’ cafe in the Northern Quarter are open throughout lockdown for collection and take outs – including an impressive range of daily sandwiches, pastries and the usual coffee excellence. Best of all though – they’ve converted half of the space into a dedicated natural wine shop – offering up bottles of truly outstanding wines to take home (or to your local park bench) to enjoy alone.
Ezra & Gil
If you’ve ever found yourself struggling to get a spot in Ezra & Gil under the normal business-as-usual-queues-out-the-door lockdown might be the perfect opportunity to give some of their proper good brunch dishes a go. I always opt for a flatbread from here though – it’s just mega. They’re open most days for takeaway, Deliveroo or click & collect on their own app.
Feel Good Club
Still open for collection and takeaway, the newly launched ‘Feel Good Club Cafe’ as I’m gonna call it is the perfect remedy for these dark, cold, lonely winter lockdown days. Wife and wife team Aimie and Kiera are all about the positivity, and helping people get through these difficult times. So pop in for a coffee and some cake and have a chat with them and realise – we’ll get through this. PS – 2021 will be mint year, I promise.
You can get your Grindsmith fix via a wonderful turquoise box, they’ve got all the classics like Full English and Eggs Royale plus ‘Quick Breakfasts’ like a bacon butty. There are also four rather fancy sandwich options to give you that proper cafe feel.
Open throughout lockdown for takeaway or online pre-orders Monday through to Saturday from 8am. Sandwiches are available from 11:30am and start at just four quid. You can also get salad boxes and plenty of cakes.
Pollen is open Thursday through to Sunday in lockdown and you can shop their pastry and pretty famous bread on their online shop and get it delivered right to your door. There’s a Cinnamon Morning Bun (£2.60) that is calling my name.
This NQ cafe offers an impressive range of foods and drinks on their Deliveroo page, from the classic brunch dishes you’d expect, to a mega ‘Soul Breakfast’ which will leave you unbuttoning your jeans as soon as you set your eyes on it. There’s also loaded waffles, gelato, milkshakes and an impressive range of coffees and teas.
Hampton & Vouis
It sounds classy, it looks classy and it is indeed – very classy. It’s Hampton & Vouis just near the Town Hall, who you’ll find on UberEats – ready for delivery each week during lockdown 2. There’s everything imaginable here, including some wicked vegan cakes, grilled sandwiches and best of all – a Jammy Dodger Pancake Stack with Ice Cream.