A Sunday afternoon in Chorlton – Electrik Bar and Epicerie Ludo

This new semester began with the January edition of the Pangaea student festival, which, for the second time this year, I missed. Although last time was unintentional, I was ill for the whole of freshers’, this time I was punished for my carelessness, as I could not be bothered getting a ticket early and they sold out. Although I could have bought one last minute, I wasn’t too happy to pay 50£ for something that’s normally worth 25£. So I missed out on Pangaea, again.

However, the good thing was that I wasn’t too hungover to get out of bed and decided to go to Chorlton for a Sunday roast with my flatmate Tilly who is also a food enthusiast (read her blog full of amazing recipes here!). Although we got on the wrong bus and ended up walking almost all the way there, it wasn’t too bad considering the amount of food we were going to have! I had heard of Electrik Bar through Twitter and thought it’d be a good idea to go try their Sunday roast, which looked amazing, and we weren’t disappointed.

I rang them a little too late to book a table, but we decided to go anyway, thinking that we would be able to find somewhere to sit, as it was only two of us. It worked this time but I strongly recommend you call to book in advance, especially if it is going to be a lot of you, as it is very busy. What is interesting about this place is that you can see a rather different crowd than that of central Manchester, which is usually full of students. Electrik seems to be a favourite for families with children, as there were a lot of them, all well behaved. Anyway, let’s get serious and talk about the food. You can choose between a chicken, beef, pork or vegetarian roast, but we opted for an Electrik board: a bit of each, just because we thought it’d be a good way to get to taste everything. Our table neighbours looked quite jealous as we were served this massive wooden board full of different meats, buttery veggies, roasted and mashed potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and stuffing, as well as the extra cheese cauliflower we had ordered.

The meat was succulent, especially the pulled pork, which was terrific. The beef was nicely cooked and very tasty. The chicken, however, was a little bit dry, not quite as outstanding as the rest, but still good. The cheese cauliflower is worth mentioning again, and even though you have to throw in a couple of extra quid to get it, I strongly recommend you do because it is truly amazing. The vegetables could have been a bit more exciting, and there could have been a bit more of them, but the rest was so good it made up for it. We could not finish the whole board and left some of the mash and a couple of roasted potatoes as there was a lot of them. I wouldn’t lie if I told you that by the end of it we were so full we could hardly move. But it was just too good. Drink-wise we had a beer each, chosen among a very large selection of English and foreign beers.

Overall, Electrik is a very good place to get a Sunday roast from. If you call early enough you can book a large table and bring all your friends for a nice Sunday party. You can get sharing boards for 2 or 4 people, respectively 24£ and 46£, or an individual main for 11.50£. You can also add some extras for a few pounds, such as the cheese cauliflower I mentioned earlier. We paid 17.50£ each for a big portion of roast with three different types of meat and a beer, which I would say is a reasonable price. Also, for the locavores out there, the vegetables are locally grown in Manchester.

These cakes looked delicious, but unfortunately there was no way we could have any more food... Maybe next time!

These cakes looked delicious, but unfortunately there was no way we could have any more food… Maybe next time!

After the meal we walked around Chorlton, where you can find plenty of nice pubs and shops, and we went to Epicerie Ludo on Beech Road, another one of my Twitter finds. Nostalgia pushed me through the doors of this French fine-food shop, and I soon found myself eyeing the rillettes and the Camembert. However my New Years diet resolutions came back to my mind and I managed not to buy rillettes (which are, if you don’t already know, essentially duck meat cooked in duck fat). However me and Tilly decided to buy a few things for dinner and so we left the shop with artisan pizza bases, tomato sauce and mozzarella to make homemade pizzas (not French but oh well!) on the same night, as well as wine from Alsace, comté, Cornish yarg, baguette and a special box of chocolate for wine, to throw a little wine and cheese party the following night. Tilly also bought a box of Williamson Tea earl grey, which is very fragrant (I will definitely be stealing some from her, sorry Tilly!).

Chorlton is a bit out of the way from the places we usually go to as students, but it is worth spending an afternoon there for a change, and there are plenty of shops we haven’t had time to explore but are certainly very interesting. With all its cafés, restaurants and shops, Chorlton is definitely an up and coming area of Manchester, and reminded me and Tilly of North East London. So next Sunday get out of Fallowfield/Rusholme and go to Chorlton! To get to Electrik, take bus 85 from RNCM to Chorlton/Wilbraham Road Post Office, or walk down Alexandra road and then down Wilbraham Road, but it will take about 45 minutes from Oxford Road. From Wilbraham Road to Beech Road, simply go down Whitelow Road and then left on Beech Road.

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