Restaurant review - Erst, Ancoats, Manchester
PUBLISHED: 00:00 17 January 2020
Erst is one of the reasons why Ancoats is billed as the new food centre of Manchester
In Manchester's exciting new gastronomic heartland of Ancoats, Erst is a place that stands out. The innovative neighbourhood restaurant and natural wine bar is from the hugely talented team behind Trove bakery and café, originally founded in Levenshulme and now with another site, just next door. What Erst has done has allowed an opportunity to expand the popular brunches and food Trove was made famous for - the clutch of awards shows its success. They are now using fire to cook and create innovative small plates at Erst.
There are simple, welcoming and well thought-through interiors where muted tones and geometric shapes mix with an industrial look with exposed metal pipes and concrete floors. There's an open bar and a small number of tables, managing that perfect balance where drinkers and diners are able to linger.
But don't be fooled by its laid- back approach - bold is what Erst does best. Its regularly changing menus are packed with exciting, conversation-starter cuisine and much of the food is made to share, with dishes serving up stop-you-in-your-tracks flavour. Warm, puffy and soft flatbreads come laden with zingy gremolata and smooth, whipped lardo (cured pork fat) to be spread as liberally as you wish. My salt- baked cod came with refreshing clementine, bergamot, turnip and chilli - an absolute triumph - and pork collar, with delightfully sweet quartered plums and rosemary was a dish you will tell everyone about. Crispy potatoes with yeast sauce is exactly the kind of small plate that keeps you going back, delivering the most delicious golden morsels with a sauce serving up more than a hint of hoppy taste.
Just as much attention, you won't be surprised to learn, has been lavished on its drinks menu. Specialists in organic and natural wines, the price point encourages you to try new things. Their wines mainly come from European producers and there is a great selection of craft beers too.
This is a place you'll never want to leave and one you'll always want to go back to. Erst is quietly, yet determinedly, getting on with it and giving this foodie corner of the city something exciting.
Erst, 9 Murray Street, Ancoats, Manchester, M4 6HS
0161 826 3008