Last week STYLEetc headed over to the Printworks for a spot of lunch at the Greek restaurant, Papa G’s. With no high expectations, simply because of location, and armed with the assumption that mass produced ‘chain restaurant’ style food awaited… we were cock-a-hoop to have our taste buds tantalised!
Papa G’s is an absolute gem amongst the usual restaurant suspects you can find at the Printworks, targeting the families who go to the cinema of a weekend, or the students who ‘rave’ into the small hours before throwing up on the manufactured cobbles outside. Papa G’s brings a genuine authenticity and a traditional Greek and Mediterranean menu to Manchester filled with fresh food and cooking techniques taught over generations.
Once we’d ordered from the £8.95 (for two courses) lunch menu, a very reasonable price we thought, STYLEetc got talking to the restaurateur himself, Angelo Pappou. Angelo is an interesting entrepreneur, whose passion not only for food but also for his customer is obvious as soon as you watch him purvey his restaurant with detail and care. Nothing is too much trouble for Angelo or any of his staff and all customers seemed to be relaxed and well looked after.
We asked Angelo how he started, and he enthused that in the late 1930’s grandfathers Pappou Angelis and Pappou Anastsasis arrived in Manchester from Kato Drys, Cyprus. They were penniless and homeless but armed with a suitcase full of Cypriot Lace – examples of which you can see hung in the restaurant. Travelling the country and selling the lace to wealthy families allowed them to save enough to start restaurants in Bolton and Wilmslow where they stayed with their families until they retired in the early 1980’s.
With such an interesting story, we couldn’t wait to try the food! And lunch did not disappoint. Starters arrived which consisted of roasted red pepper and feta soup and chicken wings. The soup was a generous portion and perfect consistency. I noted a real ‘kick’ which will have been the chilli, and Angelo explained that fresh soups are made every day, I’ve already vowed to return to try the broccoli and halloumi!
After such a decent starter, I was glad I’d ordered a salad as my main. Opting for the vegetarian option, the Greek salad was as refreshing and as authentic as the Papa G’s story, bursting with fresh ingredients. My colleague had opted for the salmon – a simple dish but unique in its taste, largely due to the fact that at Papa G’s all grilled food is cooked on real charcoal as it used to be, for maximum flavour.
Feeling more than satisfied, not only because of the decent portions, but also because of such great value for money, we left Papa G’s and it’s bright décor, the restaurant was now buzzing with a variety of lunch goers – from city corporates to older shoppers – and had completely forgot until we saw the glare of the Odeon lights that we were still inside the Printworks.
Check out www.papags.co.uk for more details and to book your table.