After months of fragrant pie-focused speculation wafting through city-centre neighbourhood Kampus, it’s confirmed – Great North Pie Co will finally open its doors there next week. We were lucky enough to get down early for a sneak peek at the new space.
Great North Pie Co’s Kampus venue which opens on Monday 27 February, is the popular pie maker’s first ever city-centre kitchen and bar. The award-winning pie company has taken over a cosy L-shaped spot in the developing district. The colour palette is giving urban garden vibes with exposed brick and chocolate brown tiles offset by forest green booth seating made for post-pie slouching. They’ve even managed to squeeze a bar into the space that’s not much bigger than a treehouse which will have local beers from Track and Manchester Union Lager on tap.
Starting life as a pop-up homemade pie stall buzzing around various artisan farmers markets in Greater Manchester and Cheshire, owners former police officer Neil Broomfield and his wife Sarah launched their extremely popular “pie and mash hatch” at Altrincham market in 2014 before opening a fully grown pie shop in Ambleside in the Lake District in 2017. Their signature deep-filled pies are made with carefully sourced British ingredients and have won them an army of fans. They can still be found popping up at markets in places like Urmston, Wilmslow and Knutsford but now, city dwellers no longer have to market-hop to guarantee their pie holes are filled.
The growth of the business hasn’t gone unrecognised, Great North Pie Co has picked up some prestigious accolades along the way including nine gongs from The British Pie Awards including best small producer. Sarah and Neil have also been asked to judge at the awards. More recently, Great North Pie Co was listed as a finalist in the BBC Radio 4 Food and Farming Awards.
What is it about Great North Pie that people rave about so much? It’s the love that goes into the generous fillings. No half portions here, buttery pastry cases are filled almost to bursting with ingredients like Dewlay’s Lancashire cheese with caramelised white onion, white pepper, and nutmeg, or grass-fed Yorkshire beef braised for 14 hours in Manchester Union Lager. There’s also a new butter pie, inspired by the Lancs classic, which features sliced Maris Piper potatoes, roast onion puree, double cream, white pepper and nutmeg. But it’s not just pies on the menu at Kampus, the carbs continue with additional menu items like lamb suet pudding, corned beef hash and Lancashire hotpot. There are breakfast butties in the morning too. The menu will change every four months.
“I just can’t wait to start serving our pies in Manchester,” says Neil, “As soon as we saw the space at Kampus we knew it was right for us. It’s dead cosy here and suits pie and mash down to a tee. What’s different about our Kampus space compared to Altrincham and Ambleside is that people can come down and grab a drink outside and stay until the evening. We’re also hoping to launch a menu of bar snacks for people to enjoy alongside the local ales.”
Great North Pie Co opens to the public next Monday (27 February) at 10.30am. Its opening hours are 10.30am – 6pm Sunday – Wednesday and 10.30am – 10pm Thursday – Saturday. The venue operates on a walk-in only basis.