MANCHESTER RESTAURANT REVIEWS - Rosso Manchester Reviews  
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Rosso Manchester
 
Rosso Manchester Reviews
3.5 stars 69%
Address43 Spring Gardens, King Street, Manchester, M2 2BG

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Rosso Manchester review
Rosso Manchester Reviews

After six years of being one of Manchester's most popular restaurants, the re-opening of Rosso in January 2017 has seen a tasteful transformation where many of the amazing original features of the former 1890's Lancashire & Yorkshire banking hall have been maintained. Replacing the red and black fittings and tacky downloaded photographs of famous Italians, is an uber stylish dining arena, highlighted by a dazzling white colour scheme with chairs and booths adorned in expensive white leather which reflects the hue of the colour changing mood lighting from the impressive dome ceiling above. A side effect of which, sadly, is some of the worst food photography conditions you'll find on Instagram, foodie blogs or in local press.

We can only speculate the cost of this beautiful transformation, likewise that of the ongoing cleaning costs caused by the choice of expensive white leather seats. How long before they ban blue jeans, we wondered. Although it would be quite fitting if blues were banned from a restaurant named "red" and part-owned by United legend Rio Ferdinand.

 
Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review Rosso Manchester review
As you would expect from a restaurant headed by the affable Canadian whom is Sasha Svatek, one of Manchester's most talented barmen, one of the few things that have noticeably remained is the quality of the drinks. The extensive signature menu is made up of what is easily amongst the best cocktails in town (of which we loved the Chestnut Crescendo) and is accompanied by possibly the best selection of rare and ultra-premium liquors in the city, including a bottle of Remy Martin Louis XIII Rare Cask 42.6, one of just 738 bottles produced... and £750 a glass, in case you were wondering (or £17,000 a bottle here).

The wine list is also arguably the best in town with over 30 available by the glass, of which there are five Champagnes, starting at just £11 for a flute of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label. Dominated, as you would expect, by Italian producers bins start from £25 for some good basic wines up to as much as you would like to pay, including £450 for the Ornellaia Bolgheri, served at George Clooney's wedding. If your personal wealth or your expense account exceeds the means of George Clooney's, you could choose the £2000 Brunello Di Montalcino Riserva Docco. For us mere mortals however, there are plenty of good wines available around the £30 - £50 mark.

The beer list, like the wine card, is focused on Italy with Birra Menabrea, Moretti La Rossa, Peroni Gran Riserva and Trieste Theresianer Pale Ale the highlights. There's even a wide choice of Italian soft drinks and no less than five different types of water - six if you include " l'acqua del rubinetto Manchester".

With live music at weekends, you could quite easily visit Rosso just to hang out in the spacious bar area, which has also had a minor face lift; the paparazzi "wall of fame", featuring the restaurant's famous customers, has now been relocated to the stairway leading down to the toilets.

 
Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review
Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review
 

The wide and varied menu includes an imaginative Antipasti selection priced from £8-£16 for individual dishes, as well as some daily specials. We took our waiter's advice on what to order and could not fault any of his recommendations. We'd suggest you need just one dish as a starter though, given the generous portion size and noticable top heavy price of each. The Carpaccio Di Manzo (£14), with its parmesan crisp and watercress, was as tender as the waiter described, whilst the Calamari Fritti (£12) was equally palatable although, it should be noted, almost twice the price of what you'd pay in most other Italian restaurants in Manchester.

The highlights of the entire meal though were the two other Antipasti, both of which we'd make a return visit for alone. The Gamberoni Alla Rosso (£15) consisted of perhaps the plumpest and juiciest Jumbo Prawns we have seen in town, perfectly poached in lime and chilli butter, whilst the Capesante (£16) ranks as the best seared scallops available in Manchester today. Served on a pea and mint risotto with light battered lemon fennel, this could a main course dish in its own right.

 
Rosso Manchester review
 

Having taken the waiter's direction to sharing a middle course of pasta, we were a little overfaced when two large beautifully presented dishes arrived instead. Despite the black truffle and parmesan farce avoiding an overpowering taste, we found the Lunette Al Tartufo (£20) a little uninspiring and would opt for one of the other twelve pasta and rice dishes next time (ranging from £14-£28), most certainly choosing it as a main course or as a middle course sharing plate.

 
Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review
   

Alongside seven pizzas (£10 - £15), the Secondi selection has a comprehensive and impressive choice of meat and fish dishes, including Branzino (£24), a generous serving of Sea Bass, piled high with quinoa and green beans. A little over-cooked and dry, it was slightly disappointing following the delightfully perfect seafood starters and beautifully presented pasta dish. Our waiter's suggestion of Aragosta was much better, with the grilled lobster served already cut into juicy flavoursome chunks. At £50 however, I would have expected it to have been accompanied with more than just crispy kale (sides are £4), and, with hindsight, I wish I'd gone with my original choice of one of the many fantastic signature dishes Rosso has to offer (£20 - £48).

Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review Rosso Restaurant Manchester Review
   

The selection of desserts is very well priced and the Tiramisu Al Cappuccino (£6) was absolutely fantastic whilst the Torta Formaggio Al Cioccolato (£7.50) cheesecake with its baked pistachio and 72% Peruvian dark chocolate tasted as impressive as it looked.

The service remained prompt, efficient, knowledgable and friendly throughout the evening and, overall, like the decor, the experience was much improved from my previous visits. Yes, it is now Manchester's most expensive a la carte restaurant and food prices are a bit of a mixed bag with some great priced options, generous portion sizes and others that make your wallet gulp a little. The cheapest three course option of soup, Margherita pizza and ice cream will set you back £24, so if money is an issue then take advantage of their fantastic lunch menu (just £16.95 for two courses) or save Rosso for a special occassion, romantic date or important business meeting - the venue is one of only a handful in Manchester that takes your breath away and the whole experience should leave your guests impressed. Just tell them to leave their blue jeans at home". ~ Paul Jackson, Restaurants Of Manchester Trusted Reviewer (Monday 6th February 2017)

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3.5 stars 69%
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