Brunch is somewhat of a ritual in my world. There is nothing more delightful than snoozing in and skipping the plain porridge I eat every weekday, in favour of venturing out and indulging in something special.
Eggs Benedict, pancakes and bacon smothered in maple syrup and smashed avocado are just some of my faves, but my lunch experience was completely unique as I travelled to Manchester’s own answer to the Caribbean, Turtle Bay, in the Northern Quarter this weekend.
Now Turtle Bay is not the kind of place I associate with brunch, I’m more of a spice wimp than a spice girl, but after traipsing around the NQ for half an hour trying to find a place that didn’t have a 20 minute wait, we were more than happy to sit down among the almost empty restaurant.
I fell in love with the decor from the moment I stepped in, every single detail was carefully anticipated, from the vintage cockerel print chairs, to the special hot sauce bottles; the atmosphere was vibrant for a half empty restaurant.
I ordered the revitalizer, a smoothie consisting of carrot, ginger and orange, while my sister had a fresh juice made from mango and orange. Both drinks were delicious, although mine had quite a kick to it from the ginger, which in hindsight wasn’t the best accompaniment to fiery food.
We shared some sweetcorn fritters to start, which were amazing, but what deep fried food isn’t? For main I had a salmon salad, with watermelon, mango and a sweet chilli sauce. It was served in a deconstructed style on a board, which was very appealing to the eye but I’m always slightly suspicious of deconstructed food.
My sister had a prawn, mango and chilli wrap and fries, which she did enjoy overall, but did mention that it wasn’t as flavourful as she expected.
My verdict? We both enjoyed the food and it was so filling that I actually didn’t even eat any dinner later, which is shocking for someone as greedy as myself. However, as I mentioned before, I struggle with spice and the whole meal was a bit too hot for my palette, but I suppose that’s just what you get from a Caribbean style restaurant so I shouldn’t be a jerk (jerk, get it?!).
Definitely head to Turtle Bay if you want an alternative brunch, as the venue was quiet with a relaxed atmosphere. I imagine it would get really busy in the evening in the throws of happy hour but still worth a visit.