Whilst Lizzie and I are currently away on our road trip of Italy, our good friend and fellow foodie Helen got the chance to check out Al Bacio, a charming Italian Restaurant situated on King Street. Here is what she had to say.
Tucked away on South King Street, in the backstreets off Deansgate, Al Bacio is a hidden gem. It’s been around for 3 years, and although it wasn’t busy the evening I visited, it seems to have a dedicated clientele thanks to the wonderfully friendly service and family-run atmosphere. The dining room is relatively small, with chandeliers and crisp white tablecloths; relaxingly classic without being too formal.
Starters at Al Bacio Manchester
We started with a fresh (and very generous portion) Insalata Tricolore, with chunks of mozzarella, tomato and avocado, decorated with a deliciously zesty pesto/salsa verde. My mum went for the Melanaze Parmigiana, a dish of baked aubergine topped with breadcrumbs and cheese. There was definitely a rustic, homemade touch to our starters, and the combination of flavours was well thought out.
The smell of a traditional woodfire pizza oven proved too tempting for us, and we asked for a garlic bread pizza. We couldn’t decide between a rosemary or mozzarella topping so we went for half and half, and our attentive waiter Franceso was happy to accommodate us. When it arrived, we were impressed with the unusually light base and delicate consistency.
Main Courses at Al Bacio Manchester
There’s plenty of choices available for vegetarians (and other food intolerances, as Francesco explained) and alongside the main menu, there were 2 vegetarian specials of the day. In the mood for mushrooms, I went for Penne Porcini, and my mum went for Truffle Risotto. My pasta was the highlight; a savoury sauce flavoured with a variety of mushrooms, white wine and herbs. It’s one of the nicest Italian dishes I’ve eaten outside of Italy, and I’d recommend it.
The truffle risotto (another huge portion) was creamy and rich, topped with truffle oil and truffle slices. My mum was disappointed she couldn’t finish it all.
Too full for dessert, I finished the meal with a cappuccino – expertly foamed milk served with a miniature amaretti biscuit (that I accidentally threw across the table after dunking in my coffee).
Al Bacio – 14 S King St, Manchester M2 6DW, UK