Last Thursday night Sydney Social 101 was invited to attend the new food & cocktail menu launch at Cloud 23 at the Hilton, Deansgate.

We weren’t sure what to expect in terms of food offering, as Cloud 23 is known essentially for the amazing cocktails and the stunning view.

We weren’t disappointed, the food choices were delicious and the cocktails peaked intrigue and creativity with the unusual colours and taste.

We also has the pleasure of meeting with David Gale, who is the Head Chef Hilton Manchester Deansgate and boasts an amazing career that left us hanging on his every word. He is Manchester born and bred and is proud to be Head Chef at the Podium Restaurant, Hilton Manchester Deansgate, which he firmly believes is the best place to eat in the city (after the food sampling on Thursday we are very inclined to agree that it is up there with the best eateries in the city).

David chatted to us about his career and how it has taken him from his early years in Wythenshaw to some of the best restaurants in the UK including the three Michelin starred Chez Nico and Nico Central in London and on to the Big Apple itself, New York, where he was responsible for opening and launching the restaurant at the famous Soho House Boutique Hotel & Members Club situated in the meat packing district of Manhattan (pretty impressive huh!).

But it cannot be denied that home is definitely where the heart is for David and it becomes clear that he is now more than happy to be living and working in the city he loves, supporting local children’s charities by giving his time and expertise and nurturing the talent of his brigade of up and coming young chefs, some of whom have had quite a difficult start in life.

 

David’s love of food and fine quality British ingredients is obvious in everything he does and says and he has developed strong relationships with producers. When asked about the food he loves to cook, the dishes he names are firmly linked to his classical training made using simple, high quality ingredients beautifully cooked. He describes his culinary heartland as Tuscany and one of his favourite dishes as Tuscan Tomatoes with Sea Salt and Olive Oil. David Gale is a chef who loves stunning ingredients, beautifully prepared and not messed around with – no foams or emulsions here. As he says himself, there is nothing better than a fresh piece of fish, simply cooked and served with lemon.

To the cocktails, oh the cocktails… here is an overview of my favourites from the evening:

Washday Blues: £10.50

Wash Day Blues

‘Flapping in the breeze, pegged out to dry in the back yards and ginnels, freshly laundered clothes made from fabrics spun in local  mills were a familiar sight to generations of Mancunians. This sunny gin breezer is guaranteed to banish the washdays blue.’

Ingredients: Tanqueray gin, honey blue Curacao, tio pepe, lemon and dandelion &burdock bitters topped with soda and served with popping candy

 

Mr Mercer’s Cotton Peculiar: £12.00

Mr Mercers Cotton Peculiar

‘Invented by Lancashire chemist John Mercer, mercerisation – which is the practice of treating cotton with caustic soda to give it a smooth silken sheen – is a process still used today. We trust you’ll find our cotton candy topped ice cream smoothie equally groundbreaking.’

Ingredients: Light Havana Club rum blended with our homemade spiced syrup, passion fruit and ice cream – fluffed up with ginger beer.

Here is a selection of our favourites:                                            

Homemade Salt & Vinegar Crisps

Homemade Salt & Vinegar Crisps

Italian grilled Veg with Hummus, Iman Byialdi, grilled Artichokes, roast Tomatoes & crisp Garlic toast

Italian grilled Veg with Hummus, Iman Byialdi, grilled Artichokes, roast Tomatoes & crisp Garlic toast

Spiced Aubergine Iman Byialdi with macerated Raisons & crisp Toast

Spiced Aubergine Iman Byialdi with macerated Raisons & crisp Toast

Marinated mixed Olives & preserved Veg

Marinated mixed Olives & preserved Veg

Beetroot cured Salmon with Beet Carpaccio, Creme fresh & Caspian Pearls

Beetroot cured Salmon with Beet Carpaccio, Creme fresh & Caspian Pearls

Slow cooked Lamb Tagine with pomegranate Couscous & toasted Almonds

Slow cooked Lamb Tagine with pomegranate Couscous & toasted Almonds

Close up of the locally cured Ham with Mettrick's Pork Pie, homemade Piccalilli, roast tomatoes, soft boiled Hen's Egg, Picked Onions & Crusty Bread

Close up of the locally cured Ham with Mettrick’s Pork Pie, homemade Piccalilli, roast tomatoes, soft boiled Hen’s Egg, Picked Onions & Crusty Bread                                                                                                                                                                                  

Close up of the classic cocktail of Lobster & Prawn with Cucumber, Spring Onion and Melba Toast

Close up of the classic cocktail of Lobster & Prawn with Cucumber, Spring Onion and Melba Toast

Macaroons

Macaroons

Manchester Social highly recommends the menu and suggests that you check it out!

About The Author

One British girl who wants to live life to the max and make the most of now! This isn't a dress rehearsal!

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