Every now and again an e-mail plops into my inbox inviting me to review somewhere or something and every single time I get butterflies in my tummy cos I can't believe that someone out there has found my blog and finds me worthy enough to review their product or service. It's an upside to blogging that I never imagined I would ever be on the receiving end of and I will forever be grateful for the opportunities Alright Blondie has given me.
Anywho enough of the slushy vom fest - The reason I'm telling you this is because on Saturday Jody and I hopped on the train to go try out the food at the brand spanking new Manahatta Greek Street* in Leeds.
The Greek Street restaurant is the second Manahatta location in Leeds (the first one is on Merrion Street) and they offer a Asian American inspired menu that is very reasonably priced (you can find it here if you're interested).
Upon approach the first thing Jody and I noticed was how swanky and upmarket the exterior of the restaurant looks - It stinks of 1920's NYC glamour. We walked in and were greeted warmly by all staff members who were by the door and yep, the inside definitely matched the outside. Loads of cosy booths, warm lighting (really cool light fixtures by the way) and NYC inspired art work adorning the walls.
It was definitely my kind of restaurant.
Our lovely waitress came over and talked us through the menu before leaving us with our thoughts. She gave us plenty of time to think about what we wanted (but not enough time that we thought she had forgotten about us!) and she made conversation without it seeming forced.
After much deliberation we came to a decision and here's what we both opted for in the end...
SALT AND PEPPER CALAMARI £6.95 With a garlic aioli.
Not gunna lie, this was without a doubt my stand out dish of the day, it was A-MA-ZING. The squid wasn't tough, it was cut up into perfect bite size pieces and the salt and pepper batter was beautiful but not to over powering. The garlic aioli went the with the calamari perfectly and I think I could have had this for all three courses and still have room for more. It's a generous portion for the price and it's definitely big enough to share between two (although I wasn't interested in sharing with Jody cos I'm greedy).
If you try one thing at Manahatta, it should be this.
YAKITORI BEEF FILLET SKEWERS £7.95 Spring onion and soy glaze (n)
Jody opted to try the beef fillet skewers for his starter and in his words 'it was very soft and tender, the perfect temperature but the chilli nearly blew his gob off'. He liked it but as he's not a spicy guy the chilli was a bit much (I did warn him to eat around it because I knew he wouldn't like it - He didn't listen obviously).
I had a bite of the beef and I can confirm that the beef was beautifully cooked - It literally melted in your mouth - and I found the seasonings to be just right. Would order again.
MANAHATTA CHICKEN £11.95 Crispy friend chicken, spicy house slaw, chipotle BBQ sauce and skin on fries (sweet potato fries +£1.25)
It took me ages to pick my main as Manahatta has such a great entree menu (aswell as a pretty extensive brunch menu) but eventually I settled on the Manahatta chicken with sweet potato fries.
The chicken was lightly spiced. - like a fancier version of KFC - and you got 4 fillets which actually surprised me as I didn't expect such a large portion (I only managed three, sorry Manahatta!). When dipped in the delightful bbq sauce (something that I don't normally like) you got the perfect mouthful of food and thinking back, I'm gutted I couldn't finish the whole thing!
As for the sides, I'm currently loving sweet potato fries so I was over the moon to see I could have them instead of skin on fries. They were nice and crunchy and made me feel a little bit better about all the calories I was consuming. The spicy slaw wasn't something that really interested me as I'm not a big fan but for review purposes I had a taste and it was actually pretty nice - I imagine if you like slaw this will be right up your street!
Overall the dish was really good, although the portion was a leeetle bit too big for me. Still dreaming of that left over chicken fillet though, wah!
ALL AMERICAN £9.50 2 eggs any style, Manahatta fried chicken, crispy bacon, sausage patty, hash brown on a buttermilk pancake with maple syrup and cream on the side.
My chunky money boyfriend took even longer than me to decide what he wanted and after a discussion with our waitress he decided on the All American from the brunch menu. Our waitress told him that he would struggle to finish it due to it's size bit Jody saw that as a challenge and was determined to finish the whole thing.
Spoiler alert, he finished the whole thing, so it must have been good right?
I just asked him to tell me what he thought about his meal and he said 'All of it'. I asked him to elaborate and he said the pancake, then did a little sigh when he remembered how soft and fluffy it was. Thumbs up from the boyfriend it is.
BANANA FOSTER £6.25 White choclate, shortbread biscuit crumb, banana ice cream, crispy banana, hot run caramel sauce. (v)(n)
This is another one of our waitress' recommendations but I probably should have gone for the lime cheesecake as I found the rum in the caramel sauce to be quite overpowering (I think I completely missed the word rum when I read the menu description oops!) If you're into your booze this won't be an issue for you but for me it kind of ruined the dish as it was just too much.
Apart from the rum sauce (which just wasn't too my taste I'm afraid) the dessert itself was pretty good. The white chocolate was really creamy (but not too sickly) and the crunch of the banana and the shortbread went perfectly with the soft nana ice cream (which was also marvellous).
With just a plain caramel sauce this would have been my perfect dessert - I'm just a bit of a wuss when it comes to strong alcoholic flavours!
WARM CHOCOLATE FONDANT £6.50 Vanilla ice cream. (v)(n)
Jody refuses to go to a restuarant if there isn't some kind of chocolatey gooey goodness on the dessert menu and this chocolate fondant ticked all of his boxes. The sponge was moist, the sauce was rich and he loveloveloved the crunchy caramel twist on top. The only thing he didn't like was the ice cream as the flavour wasn't too his taste.
Apart from that though? Perfect.
To summarise: Service at Manahatta was great, the food came out in good time and was beautifully presented and to be honest, it was just nice. I know that nice sounds lame and twee but it really was. We had an awesome time at Manahatta and next time we are in Leeds we will no doubt be back to trial some more of the brunch menu.
*I was invited by Manahatta to sample their menu and get a feel for the new restauant in return for an unbiased and honest review. All thoughts, opinions and calamari love are my own.
Find Manhatta Greek Street:
29 EAST PARADE
LEEDS LS1 5PS
Manahatta social media: