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Top 5 cheap eats
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by Kate Feld, writer of Manchizzle, a blog about life in the city that the Guardian called “the pick of Manchester culture and hub of blogging goodness”
This & That
One of the city’s best “rice and three” joints may be hidden down a tiny side alley in the Northern Quarter, but the curry faithful sniffed it out years ago. The decor’s no-frills but the quality is unbeatable, and a huge lunch’ll get you change from a fiver. If it’s shut or mobbed, try Al Fasial on Thomas Street.
Not far from the University is this tiny restaurant, recently expanded from a Korean grocery. Their inexpensive menu ranges from tasty dumplings, sushi and noodle soups to Korean specialities such as bibimbop. And you can’t leave without trying the kimchi (spicy pickled cabbage) – they make it there.
City centre workers rejoiced when this legendary Bury Greek deli opened a location on Deansgate. Here you’ll find reasonably priced sandwiches with unusual fillings (like lamb, mint yoghurt and aubergine), good soups and salads, and European pastries and cakes.
If you’re near the Arndale Centre when hunger strikes hit Pancho’s, a stall in the food market where Mexpat Enrique cooks up the spicy street food of home. Go for burritos, quesadillas, or my favourite, a trio of tacos for three pounds and change. Authentic corn tortillas make all the difference, but beware of the scorching habanero sauce.
The modern canteen layout of this Northern Quarter favourite gives it a bustling, community feel during lunchtimes. Not just soups, although there are six on offer daily, the Soup Kitchen also specialises in delicious salads, healthy homemade quiches and chef specials at very reasonable prices. Soup Kitchen opens Monday – Friday 10am till 3pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am till 5pm.