Six by Nico has arrived in Manchester, and I have been dying to try it out and share the news ever since I heard about it a few weeks ago.
Last month, I took to Instagram to share my delight over discovering Edinburgh’s finest restaurants, Six By Nico, which is also popular in Glasgow. I visited the restaurant ahead of the Manchester launch to truly get an understanding of the concept, as it is something that Manchester is not currently offering. Some places may be offering a similar or close concept, but not exact.
Below is the Instagram post I shared following my trip to Edinburgh, getting to grips with the new Six by Nico launch that was soon to be taking place in our Northern city. As you can see, I left very satisfied, with a happy belly and a rather cheery mood after exploring one of the most delicious desert wines I’d ever tried.
What is Six by Nico Manchester?
Six by Nicol is a new restaurant which runs from the concept of a new menu every six weeks. The signature six-course tasting menu, which changes every six weeks in style, cuisine and inspiration, also offers a wine pairing option, where a suitable wine paired to the each dish is an option.
When you dine here, you have the six course menu which is the only offering for the six week duration – which includes an extra option for starter snacks if you’re feeling particularly foodie!
This mini-chain is launched by chef Nico Simeone, who has opened the Manchester restaurant in Spring Gardens as a new July 2019 launch (following Belfast, Glasgow and Edinburgh).
The interior of this particular Six by Nico is very Edwardian chic combined with dark mystery. It’s classy, and you would never guess there is probably a team of very busy chefs rushing to get all the dishes ready to a spectacular presention behind the scenes.
It has a warm, snug feeling to it, and feels kinda premium yet not pretencious, if that makes sense.
Six by Nico Prices
The 6 course tasting menu is a set price of £29, which I think is fantastic to say you can an array of unique dishes, all at reasonable sizes. You might think they look small if you browse online, but don’t be fooled! You WILL be full by the time dish 5 arrives.
For an extra £26 you can get matched wines for five of the courses, which again, I wouldn’t grumble at that.
I paired with the wine when I experience the concept in Edinburgh, but due to being a driver on my Manchester visit (didn’t think that one through) I skipped it.
Each six week offering is themed, and Manchester opened with no other than the ‘Chippie’ theme. I mean, us Northern monkeys appreciate a good chippy course, right?
What I loved first off about the menu is that although it is called ‘The Chippie’, don’t expect a large portion of fried cod and bitty chips to be served up, If that’s what you want, you can go down to your local chip shop.
Chips & Cheese
The first course is ‘chips and cheese’, and is much more carefully created and put together than the hangover classic some of you will associate this with!
It comes as a serving of creamy melted parmesan and tasty curry oil, with a crisp salt and vinegar potato croquette sat in the middle. Unusual was my first thought, but I had devoured it in pure delight before I could think of anything else. A cheesy dream is now the only words I can think of now I’ve sat and reflected.
Next, the scampi dish came out which is in fact a serving of monkfish cheeks with a pea emulsion to create a gourmet version of the beloved mushy peas side. It comes with a herby butter and a gribiche, kinda of like a zingy tartare sauce and creamed egg.
A perfect little dish combining a rich dressing with delicious fish.
We also tried the Cauliflower version of this, which is photographed above. A great alternative for those who don’t eat fish.
The ‘steak pie’ was one I was intrigued with, as I knew this wouldn’t be your ordinary steak filled pie with pastry and a splash of gravy. Instead, it was an intense combination of rich flavours, where layers of shredded and flaky beef shin sat aside sliced mushrooms and an onion ketchup, making this dish go down particularly well.
I’m a steak fan but tend to not order it much when I dine out, as I get a little bored of a slice of steak with chips and veggies. So this version won be over for both originality and taste.
Of all the dishes, this one is probably the one I would say was my least favourite but that is purely because I’m not a huge fish fan. I’m one of those that prefers all my fish breaded the unhealthy way, yet this was a large chunky piece of just done cod, topped with a sprinkling of batter and sitting on confit fennel and samphire with beer pickled mussels, a sharp celeriac remoulade, and Brandade.
For those who enjoy ‘proper’ fish (not me and my fishcake diet) I can see this being a favourite dish for many. It also had one of the best presentations of all 6.
I’m a sucker for a veggie sausage – another odd thing about me as well as the breaded fish situation – so I swapped the smokey sausage for the veggie sausage dish instead. However, I managed to try a bit of the original dish and compared them both, which were both delicious in taste.
This was the most theatrical dish as it came with it’s little glass case complete with a touch of smoke. silliness of the ‘smoked sausage’, which came in its own glass cloche pumped full of applewood smoke.
The meat version sausage was made up of crisp pork belly with caramelised apple and black pudding, paired with apple and salt-baked celeriac. It was a really flavoursome sausage mix and I kind of wish I’d gone for it after all.
The vegetable one didn’t disappoint though. It felt like a healthier spring roll with all the vegetables packed into a crispy coating. A dish packed with lots of roasted and smoked flavours – one of my favourites.
Deep fried Mars Bar
I get overly excited for the pudding at any restaurant, and the fact the choosing element was taken away from me didn’t ruin my experience because everything about this six course menu just pleased me from start to finish. Perhaps the fact I spied it was a take on the Deep Fried Mars Bar, I knew I was in safe hands.
And I was. A mash up of nougat, orange, chocolate, caramel and honeycomb in the form of mousse, gel, crisp slices and fruit slices was a crazy concoction, but in my eyes, was a refreshing take on a dessert.
The portion size was plenty for this dish, and although some may find it sickly, I couldn’t eat it fast enough!
If you love a surprise element, intense flavours, food carefully thought out and top notch presentation, then Six by Nico is completely worth it.
Plus, for £29 for 6 courses, you really can’t go wrong. You get the feel of premium dining without the price tag, and I honestly think Manchester has been missing a place like this since… well… forever?