Last Thursday, I headed along to the re-launch evening for The Rabbit in the Moon – the restaurant on top of Manchester’s Urbis, by chef Michael O’Hare.
It’s been talked about a lot, and I was more than thrilled to be part of a select few press and critics coming along to taste test the new menu. I actually reviewed this first for Lovin Manchester, in which you can find the full feature here.
But I’ve used some of my own personal imagery for this blog post, so read below and have a gander at the food…
Those who appreciate fine dining are in for a real treat with the relaunch of The Rabbit in The Moon, by chef Michael O’Hare.
The premium restaurant has just re-launched with a stronger and bolder menu. Located in the Urbis, the restaurant’s menu and the interior has upped its game, setting the scene for those who appreciate real quality ingredients and have a love for space-age Asian foods.
The Rabbit in The Moon officially re-opened on the 29th March, and I was lucky enough to try out the place the evening before it’s opening. It’s been said that the relaunch is focusing on a new, more visually and technically impressive, ingredient led menu.
So lets see what I thought…
First of all, when it comes to being more visually pleasing, they’ve certainly succeeded in this area. Housed in the iconic Urbis building, the venue has it’s own private lift which takes you to the top floor. As soon as you walk into the restaurant, you are greeted with the ceiling to floor glass windows, looking out onto Manchester,
It’s unique and has a distinctive identity, very elegant and sophisticated. However, due to it’s spaced out tables and separate floors, you get a real sense of intimate dining.
All the tables face the windows, meaning you can glare at the Manchester skyline, whether you’re there for lunch or dinner…
In a nutshell, this is an Asian inspired tasting menu, showcasing intense flavours which represent authentic asian food options.
I have to say – the menu is brave. And if they want to be a unique dining choice in Manchester, I’d say they’ve already got it.
You get some concoctions which I’d never put together. To start, I made my way through a glazed Eel bao bun, Oysters and Langoustine Toast, which I would never usually order.
However, I’m actually a real fan of Asian food, and I found these an unusual – and tasty – change. They also served up Native Lobster with Thai flavours served up in a fine crisp, which was delicious, and by far one of the best I tried on the night.
I feel I was more in awe at how delicate the starters were, and just how much effort had gone into the presentation. It was spot on for those perfect flat lays!
The main course also came out as tasters on a plate, and again I made my way through rather a lot of dishes – I think I was up to around 10 dishes by the time the starters and mains had finished coming out.
The Soy and Ginger Glazed Pork Cheek was a strong flavoured one, with real Asian vibes. However, it was the plate filled with a fillet of Beef with Salt and Pepper Prawn and crispy chilli beef strips that won me over.
The presentation was like an oil painting: all this black sauce decorating the plate, along with a mini fried egg sat on spicy rice at the side of the plate. Very, very interesting, is how best I can describe this.
I’ll tell you something for sure: the whole experience was experimental for me, and I’m prone to dining out a lot and trying out all the cuisines. But this was an eye opener.
The sweets included a lovely White Chocolate Passionfruit mix, set around the sweetest crisp. The Passionfruit and the White Chocolate went together strangely well, and I was actually left wanting more of this.
I’m not a huge fan of small desserts though – I’m a greedy one at heart, but for those who just like a small plate with a dessert sample to finish your meal, these desserts are designed for you. Definitely not over-facing, just expertly put together.
To finish the menu tasting, a plate of Petite Four came out, decorated with Peppercorn Éclairs, Matcha and Miso Crepes filled with cream and raspberry truffle chocolates.
This finisher certainly shared a few strong, bold flavours disguised in the prettiest of sweets. Never before have I tasted truffles so rich and intense.
The wine list is also interesting, and I rather enjoyed sampling a range of champagnes, white wines and red wines. But what stood out the most was a delicate Chinese Red Wine. I can’t say I have ever tried a red wine from China before!
It was smooth, easy-to-drink and complimented the meat dishes perfectly. Again, very interesting…The wine list is also interesting, and I rather enjoyed sampling a range of champagnes, white wines and red wines. But what stood out the most was a delicate Chinese Red Wine. I can’t say I have ever tried a red wine from China before!
It was smooth, easy-to-drink and complimented the meat dishes perfectly. Again, very interesting…