Cocktails/Drinks, Food

Small Plates And Cocktails At Tampopo, Corn Exchange

Tampopo is a favourite amongst many in Manchester and it is not hard to see why. A fusion of flavours from Asia, they take the palate on a taste tour like no other and it is always a bit of a ‘go to’ for me, for healthy and fresh flavours that I struggle to find elsewhere. So when Tampopo invited me in to try their small plates and new cocktails I knew it was going to be worth it.

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The cocktail menu is small and perfectly formed with the Singapore Sling being a perfect balance of gin, cherry liqueur, cointreau, grenadine and pineapple. It is fruity without being overly sweet and even my wine loving, none cocktail drinking partner agreed that this was a winner. The lychee bellini was also good with a lychee in the bottom dying to be dug out with fingers, which complimented the dry fizz perfectly.

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The small plates menu is tapas style smaller portions for if you either have a small appetite or if you fancy trying lots of tasters from the menu without committing to just one dish as a traditional main. The menu highlights the Tampopo classics mixed amongst new dishes so you can either stick to what you know or try something a little different.

The Thai Prawn Crackers are crunchier and spicier than their Chinese friends. They are so moreish, we had nearly eaten them all before our food started to arrive and, let me tell you, that was not long. The Japanese Style Sticky Wings had a beautifully fragrant crispy skin and were a brilliant size, no nibbling at teeny scraps of meat with these babies.

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We tried two of the Hot and Sour Soups – Mussels and Tom Yam Prawn with Vermicelli Noodles. Whilst it is spicy, it is also perfectly fragrant with a generous amount of plump prawns and juicy mussels. I am not normally a fan of hot food but this I would definitely order again.

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The Vietnamese Spring Rolls house crunchy fresh vegetables, vermicelli noodles and a beautifully balanced blend of Asian herbs. I loved the crunch of the vegetables in contrast to the light coating. The Japanese Pork Dumplings have been on the menu for as long as I can remember and are something I order every time. They are so much lighter than you would expect with a soft pork filling, so tasty.


Last and definitely not least was the Rendang Roti Bites. These little mouthfuls of Malaysian beef stew served on top of roti, are quite simply divine. The beef has been slow cooked so melts in the mouth with the lightly spiced sauce complimenting the roti bread so well. If I wasn’t so full I would have ordered at least another portion.

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Onto dessert and we tried the Malaysian Pancake and Coconut Chocolate Fondant. The pancake was an instant hit and I fought over every mouthful with my date! The buttery flaky roti is lightly drizzled with condensed milk and cinnamon sugar then served with a cinnamon ice cream. It is wonderfully different and surprisingly light for a pancake. The fondant was much heavier with a liquid chocolate centre around a fairly dense coconut heart. The coconut was a bit too much for us to be honest but the chocolate part was just as a fondant dessert should be. The black sesame ice cream served with it brought out the sweetness well too.

The new restaurant in the Corn Exchange is the perfect hideaway when you have just had too much of the bustling shoppers. It is down a few steps from the ground level so slightly underground and perfect to just get away from everything, even if it is just for a drink. But that said, you won’t be able to avoid those roti bites right?

I was invited to dine as a guest of Tampopo and wasn’t asked to pay for my food or drink.

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