Honey – can you think of a more apt name for a venue in Manchester? You will find this exquisite restaurant within 5 star Hotel Gotham, which dominates King Street and is the former home of a bank. The grade II listed Lutyens building has kept its banking past throughout the design and the traditional art deco features had me wandering the place for much longer than I should have been!
Honey is located on the 6th floor with gorgeous views over the city from their vintage style windows. The restaurant is intimate with well placed partitions to make it feel like you are almost dining there alone. New head chef Ross Chatburn likes to showcase local produce and the unsung heroes, as he calls them, of the culinary world. And boy, can he do that.
The first dish focused on the humble radish. A delightful salad of raw and pickled radishes with pink lady apples and a burnt apple puree. The elements of whisky add to the burnt flavour but also allow for a sweetness to come through and compliment the apple flavour. The textures are beautiful with crunch from the radishes that gives the dish a light and slightly herbal edge.
Pig cheek, carrot, cherry and smoke was served next. The cherries have been marinated in hibiscus for a slightly herbal yet floral addition to cut through the richness of the pig cheek. The pickled carrot and carrot ketchup add a little sweetness whilst the aroma of smoke permeated from the dish to take over the senses as we ate. Apart from the dessert, this was my favourite dish and I loved the colours used on the plate.
The fish course of scallop, cucumber, oyster and sea vegetables was visually stunning. The scallops are tender and soft with texture from the crispy whitebait and there is a lightness from the charred cucumber and cucumber sauce. The small cubes of toasted sourdough give this otherwise light dish a bit of a kick to round it out and the smell of sea air wafted around the room delightfully.
The last of the savoury dishes was lamb, asparagus, wild garlic and gnocchi. The lamb is cooked pink and just cooked at that making it tender and flavourful. The white asparagus adds a slight bitterness to balance the flavours of the meat and the gnocchi finishes it off well for a fairly filling meal, considering how small it may look on the plate. The dish was served with a particularly good Argentinian Malbec which, although full bodied, almost becomes sweet when tasted alongside the lamb.
With my trip to New York pending I was particularly excited to see peach on the menu for dessert. Peach & honey, verbena and thyme to be exact. You would be wrong to expect an overly sweet dish here. The peach adds a fruity yet light element with the honeycomb providing good crunch and a little bitterness to proceedings. It is truly stunning and the perfect way to finish off a gorgeous meal.
Above Honey is Hotel Gotham’s members only club, Brass. The grand gold staircase leads to a beautiful bar area with a terrace to enjoy their delectable cocktails whilst looking over this fair city.
We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Hotel Gotham and I have noticed some bargain priced rooms available on a Sunday night so I am definitely going to plan an overnight stay, which can only mean more of Chef Chatburn’s beautiful dishes and more exploration of this gorgeous building.
Honey had not been on my radar until now. I’m not really sure why as I am an advocate of a good hotel bar or restaurant and can regularly be found on the terrace of King Street Townhouse with an espresso martini, enjoying the view. Honey is now firmly on my favourites list and I’ll certainly be back for their exclusive dining experience. I would recommend you treat yourself as soon as possible, before this hidden gem is the talk of the town.
We were invited to dine at Honey as guests and were not asked to pay.