My abominable sense of direction is pretty pronounced. On leaving a shop, I often go the way I came before eventually realising my error. I was in Bordeaux for a year and even at the end when I entered a square I felt like the rest of Bords had swivelled round like a rubix cube and I wasn’t sure where the high street was. I saw my sister last week in Manchester & was astonished to hear her referring to roads as ‘north of here’ or ‘south-west of such-and-such’ with a clear image of the area in her head, when in my head once we go round a corner my bearings had flown away.
However when we were exploring Manc which is where she’ll be living for the foreseeable future, I made an effort to memorise and picture places. If I close my eyes I can picture the main road which goes north to Manchester city centre and there is Fallowfield nearby. We ate at a place just off this road called the Fallow Café. It was actually a tough call between that and Beer Studio which is really close, but we went for Fallow Café (ok we stopped off at Beer Studio for a drink b4.)
It was a fairly small place but their website told of open mic events, live bands and film screenings which suggested it had some good vibez. The staff were friendly when we turned up and there were a few people sitting at tables, which gave the place a heartbeat.
The menu was alluring particularly because there were a lot of vegetarian/vegan options (and not just dishes that happen to be vegan which, while sometimes legit, can imply a lack of imagination.) The falafel burger served with rosemary focaccia, onion jam, & harissa really tempted me but since I tend to avoid garlic and onion where possible I settled on Gnocchi Primavera or potato dumplings in a saffron sauce, with braised radicchio, asparagus, courgette, roasted almonds & cheddar while my sister ordered the pulled pork which is, according to their menu, slow cooked for more than 10 hours. It arrived resembling an Impressionist painting: dots of cream, white and forest green. Gleaming eggs of potato squidge-bites among scatters of courgette cubes and asparagus coins, the radicchio sunbathing on top. Flavour-wise, I didn’t get much of the saffron and thought the sauce seemed to be about 9/10 oil which put me off a little, but thought the almonds snapping next to rounds of soft gnocchi worked really well, and the vegetables complemented in texture and taste. Twinny said her pork was rich and saucy, and was particularly taken by the coleslaw.
Our mains came to under £20 which is decent and overall I thought the place was inviting and friendly. We were able to chat n chill in after-exam relaxation, and I may not have a v good sense of direction but I think Becky is headed off to a great place this September!