Wood has opened in the city centre as an addition to the upcoming Manchester bar and restaurant area of First Street and STYLEetc headed down to review the taster menu to get the jist of what’s on offer.
Dimly lit and elegantly laid out, Wood welcomes visitors with inviting decor. Modern with all the dressings of a high end establishments, the tables are left uncovered with modest adornments of candles and flowers.
An overly wooden theme runs through the whole restaurant floor (more style than pun). Mustard and blue covered seating provides a needed colour pop to keep things contemporary and interesting. The Kitchen is visible from the main dining area, so you can see the team of skilled chefs whipping your dishes up in real time.
For our visit we tried the 5 course taster menu, where every dish came with a carefully selected accompanying wine.
The first point to be noted is our waiter’s dedication to the service. He spent good time chatting about our wine preferences, giving the choice of the recommended glass with every course or tailoring personal taste to one bottle we could have. We decided to put our trust in the Chef’s choices.
The wine went nicely with the pork, which gave us woody and warm notes. The meat offered a slightly salty texture which was presented well with a burst of juicy flavour from the corriander and pineapple sauce.
The rarebit was served slighly crisp on the edges, with a toasty scent. Chopped tomato was arranged neatly underneath within the consomme for adorning flavour.
The Pinot Noir that came with offered was dry to match the moistness of the dish in a complementary fashion.
This was first served with a very wonky fork which took a good ten minutes to swap, this was no bother as the dish was cold either way so no heat was lost in the delay.
The Wasabi Melon Balls were juicy and fruity, accompanied with some very salty Salmon which was delicious and tasty. The course was one of the prettiest in presentation and the Catalonian wine to go with was skillfully chosen to suit.
At this point the restaurant became considerably busier so there was a 25 minute delay between courses 3 and 4. Our waiter was attentive during this time and offered us more drinks if we wished,
When the course arrived it was definitely worth the wait. Sumptuously soft lamb which literally melted in the mouth was presented with a drizzle of anchovie garlic and pea mint sauces. The meat was tender and juicy, offering the ideal comfort food you’d crave for a Sunday roast.
The slow service continued on to dessert, we did lose count of how long it took to arrive. When it did finally appear it didn’t disappoint.
Think childhood school dinner dessert, except amplified by the skills of a top chef. The result? A delicious ice cream with fruit sauce and wafer which brings nostalgia of being young whilst satisfying the tastebuds of an adult palette.
The wine was also a firm favourite of the evening. The Riesling was a very sweet dessert wine which not only fit the ice cream well but tasted so good solo we made note to get a bottle once we got home.
Verdict: Wood offers a heightened fine dining experience for the area and is not one to be missed if you enjoy browsing Manchester’s booming food scene. We recommend choosing your time wisely to not clash with peak hours and be able to take it all in at your own pace.