CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Cheshire Life today CLICK HERE

Restaurant review - Opus One, Radisson Blu Edwardian, Manchester

PUBLISHED: 15:15 12 March 2013 | UPDATED: 21:06 05 April 2013

Historic facade at the front of the hotel

Historic facade at the front of the hotel

Harmony is the key at this slick Manchester hotel with a musical past. Words by Dean Bowman

The Radisson Blu Edwardian hotel, housed in Manchesters iconic Free Trade Hall, has inherited an impressive history.



Built in 1853 to commemorate the repeal of the Corn Laws, the building played a key role in the emergence of the Labour and womens suffrage movements. More recently the building played host to several key musical events including Bob Dylans first electric gig, Pink Floyds premier of Dark Side of the Moon, and the Sex Pistols launching the Punk era, not to mention being home to the legendary Hall orchestra for a century and a half. No wonder Radissons restaurants are named Opus and Alto in honour of this musical heritage.



With music and politics covered, Radisson are now hoping to make the building a famous culinary destination. Opus One is a lavish space with an incredibly moody atmosphere.



Modernist red chandeliers wrap around old fashioned pillars, throwing ruby light on the black lacquered surfaces. The decadent decor and furnishings, including crocodile hide chairs, somehow manage to be both relaxing and stimulating, whilst completely avoiding pretention.



Opus One has a similarly unstuffy attitude to its food with its market menu changing frequently along with the seasons, and offering diners the freshest local ingredients, some of which are even sourced from the hotels own rooftop herb and vegetable garden. These ingredients are given an inventive twist by Head Chef Neil Armstrong who makes a giant leap for British cuisine.



My meal included a starter of delicate Brixham crab and lobster cakes accompanied by fresh salsa and green herb mayonnaise. This primed the palate for the main, a sumptuously rich and deliciously tender seared duck breast with an elegantly sculpted tower of fondant potato subtly flavoured with garlic and rosemary.



The rich tastes on display were complimented by some spiced plums. What better way to finish the meal than with the signature dessert A Taste of Manchester? This quirky medley of Vimto flavoured parfait, miniature Eccles cake and berry smoothie demonstrated the establishments playful side.



After stuffing yourself with all that great food, you can hang out in the hotels chic new champagne bar, Opus Reserve, which offers a wide range of bubble infused delights which you can sip whilst pondering the buildings rich history, which still manages to seep from every surface. The majority of the hotels rooms are housed in a modern tower that juts over a dozen storeys above the Edwardian facade, ensuring that the highest rooms have a commanding view of the city centre.



The cosy rooms boast all the creature comforts you can desire and provide a perfect counterpoint to the history of the building below.

More from Food & Drink

Yesterday, 16:45

Head Chef Bradley Lancaster, aged 22, started off in the kitchen at a young age of 14 washing pots. Bradleys first chef training experience was working for the ‘Pecks’ group. He then moved to Camden Town in London to work for Mr Gordon Ramsay, where he intensely learnt attention to detail. Bradley has also worked over seas in Ibiza, learning different cuisines and cooking techniques. Bradley returned to the ‘Pecks’ group up as Head Chef at The Wheatsheaf in Sandbach before opening the family run business ‘Casters’.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:25

Set in beautiful Hawarden village, The Old Grocery occupies a building that historically housed a butcher and grocery store (fondly remembered by Chef proprietor Rob) and has been part of Hawarden hospitality for over 30 years.

Read more

Dorfold Hall is about to celebrate its 402nd Christmas, and as ever, it’s going to be a combination of family, tradition and fun.

Read more
Thursday, December 6, 2018

Chester’s restaurant boom continues, and a stylish recent addition to the dining scene is the 1699 Bar & Brasserie at The Townhouse hotel.

Read more
Chester

You don’t need to book a flight to get a taste of Sardinia... Sardus Cucina in Altrincham is on the doorstep

Read more
Italian Food Altrincham
Friday, November 23, 2018

Rowton Hall Hotel and Spa, set in a leafy Chester village, showcases seasonal flavours at an elegant luncheon

Read more
Cheshire Life Luncheon
Monday, November 19, 2018

New arrivals to check out this winter and in the new year.

Read more
Manchester Restaurants

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today


Local Business Directory

Property Search