There has been hype around the launch of Eden in Manchester , as the venue that formerly housed Tiger Tiger reopened in August to offer drinks and dining in the city centre.
Being a part of the Printworks, there was interest in what would be done with the space, would it adhere to the mainstream music and affordable club aesthetic as its neighbours do or would it venture in another direction?
The answer is neither, whilst it does adhere to some traits of the Printworks, cheap drinks and chart favourites on the playlist, Eden does offer a different aesthetic to its counterparts. Inspired by botany, the interior features plenty of greenery and floral displays. As you enter you are welcomed by a neon sign above the door set in shrubbery, this gives way to the hall which leads left for the bar or right for the restaurant. The bar has a clashing mix of themes happening to achieve a modern result. Embroidered floral and wooden stools accompany plant filled bar, so far so traditional, but placed atop a geometric patterned floor and include a faux-tree sculpture and things start to look more interesting.
The restaurant follows suit of the botanical theme, with a plant textured wall that includes neon typography, mirroring the entrance sign. Table and chairs for dining are fairly standard issue, all dark wood and the tables are adorned with some plastic flowers and candles.
With the redesign, you could almost forget this used to be Tiger Tiger, only the general layout remaining to remind you. The space is enormous, with multiple floors allowing room for four difference dance areas that can play different genres to suit the masses. Downstairs additionally caught our attention, as past the cloakroom lies a space before the toilets that is earmarked for engagement. Not only does this room have a cute photobooth to capture guests attention, but there is an actual swingset that just screams “tag us on instagram”. The added details to the venue give it something unique to stand out against the competition and features like the swing will surely be a good move for generating social awareness to increase interest.
Whilst we’re sure the nightlife won’t be vacant from Eden, it will be interesting to see how the food goes down. STYLEetc stopped by to try some of the key courses on offer for ourselves. Read on to see our thoughts.
What was surprising first of all was the price range of the menu, being in Manchester city centre this could have been in the higher range but pleasantly the starters were all under £7, mains starting at £9.50 and desserts around £5. It fell more within the Wetherspoons region of prices, but in a much more glamorous environment and superior cocktails. To begin we opted for the Raspberry Rum Spritzer and the Forbidden Fruit, priced at £9 and £8 respectively.
Onto starters, the chosen dishes were the garlic bread and cheese and chorizo scotch egg. The scotch egg had a nice juxtaposition in textures, offering a crisp breadcrumb exterior which gives way to a runny yolk inside. Garlic mayo was included in the egg, balancing out the chorizo to ensure this starter was not too spicy. Likewise the garlic bread was well received, generously portioned this could easily be shared and made for a simple dish to nibble as you wait for the main event.
For mains, the pepperoni pizza and rib-eye steak options were selected. Firstly, the pizza was in plentiful supply, being served as a long flatbread. This main can easily feed two or three diners together if you don’t want a huge meal. Whilst tasty, the pizza was a bit oily, but considering the price was under a tenner we can’t grumble about the value for money. Similarly, the rib-eye was well received, a little thin but cooked exactly as requested (medium rare) and overall decent. If you are opting for a steak we’d recommend paying the £2.50 extra to add a sauce on, the beef gravy option would be a great choice for dining northern style. Chilli broccoli florets were added as a side to the steak, these were slightly undercooked, this left a harder stem but this is actually to our preference so wasn’t a bad thing.
Dessert was found to be the hardest to choose a dish from as a few on the menu sounded delicious, but eventually the ‘Eden’ mess (pun intended) and the classic sticky toffee pudding. The ‘Eden’ mess was lovely and sweet but would have benefited from a better ratio of cream to meringue. The sticky toffee pudding performed better, being dense in texture and coming with a good portion of ice-cream and sauce. You usually can’t go wrong with sticky toffee pudding and this was certainly the case on this occasion.
Throughout our visit, there were a few teething problems with the restaurant. A few bottles ended up smashed, orders of other diners were forgotten and other instances occurred, such as our previous dish plates being left on the table as new dishes were served and glasses piling up as they weren’t cleared. Despite these minor issues, the staff were exceedingly friendly and seemed to be doing their best, let’s hope it’s just the settling in period whilst the restaurant is getting to grips with the new routine.
The final verdict is, Eden is certainly worth a visit if you haven’t yet had chance to stop by. It’s worth dressing up for your visit so you can get the perfect picture for the ‘gram on the adorable swingset. The aesthetic is cool and certainly fits the demographic the brand is aiming for, we can see the bar and upstairs club being busy every weekend over the next few months. The restaurant fits into this bigger picture well, the food is cheap and cheerful as you’d expect, it’s not premium or on the level of upscale establishments but then neither is it trying to be. The aim is to offer good food at affordable prices for those wants to dine and then go on to drink and party later and it certainly works to fulfil this.