Bread fans will love the Bakerie tasting store – just don't call it a wine shop.
Picture this: mounds of bread, gallons of delicious wine and a line of punters determinedly queuing for their free tasters.
As one man wryly observes: “It’s like the war, this is an actual breadline.”
But this is no ordinary bread, this the best bread you’ll get in Manchester courtesy of the Bakerie Tasting Store - the latest trendy delight to pop up in the Hive in the Northern Quarter.
The store’s no-messing strap line, “It’s all about the bread” will not disappoint carb fans with a passion for the doughy-stuff.
We’re at the opening night and over by the ovens, you can watch and chat to the bakers as they kneed their magic into a selection of loaves.
Meanwhile in the corner, people are scrambling over each other to mop up some balsamic vinegar – the organiser’s did not see this frenzy coming.
Another dimension to the Bakerie is their impressive selection of quirky yet high quality wines. Whether you’ve a taste for a full-bodied Malbec or crisp Sauvignon Blanc, or (like me) you haven’t a fig about vino, Bakerie’s tasting sessions are a great place to start.
Bakerie store manager, Dale Meakin, explains: “It’s not a wine shop, it’s a tasting store. For us it’s all about finding great quality wine, no matter where it’s from or how whacky it is. For example, we’ve got a stunning Sauvignon Blanc from India, wine made from grapes grown on Mount Fuji and another from Cyprus.”
This is all new to a wine novice like me, stuck in the “I’ll get what’s on offer” state of mind.
Dale adds: “Because we’re independent, we’ve got a freedom in choosing what wines we have on offer without anyone telling us what we should be selling. It’s all about great quality wine.”
Next we shimmy over to the wine tasting session in ‘the Classroom’ – Bakerie’s bespoke contemporary arty space (it has proper primary school benches, the one’s you dropped on your foot in P.E lessons).
We’re welcomed by Peter Dawson and Dougie Lowe of Origin Wines & Spirits who top up our glasses with their finest.
First up is an Italian rose, Anima Rosa. I’ll be honest, I’m not a big fan of the pink stuff but this is beautiful. Light, dry and crisp – right up my street.
Next is up is a red made with a ‘very rare grape’ – La Crima and for red wine fan Amanda Dubrowski it’s a hit.
“It tastes like you’re drinking from the bowels earth, like frankincense – it’s beautiful.”
As we admire the legs on a Majorcan red, Dougie explains: “This Virat is an example of a more unusual wine and it’s named after a native Majorcan dog.
“The thing is, a lot of people tend to drink a lot of the same – if they like Pinot Grigio, then they will often drink that. But here you have the chance to try lots of unusual wines from places you might not expect.”
With it’s simple but addictive combination wine and bread, it’s clear the Bakerie Tasting Store is a big hit with Mancunians.
For more information go to: http://bakerie.co.uk/bakerie-tasting-store