Over the past few years, The New Moon Pub Company (here), run by experienced chef Dave Mooney and hospitality supremo Paul Newman, have *quietly been opening a small group of quality gastropubs around Cheshire. I have previously visited their Old Sessions House in Knutsford. (*Known as @gobbychef on twitter, Chef Mooney does nothing quietly!)
With, Beef & Pudding, their first foray into Manchester city centre, due to open on April 4th, I thought it was about time I got around to checking out the “first born” - The Lord Binning.
To start, I selected ‘The Binning’ Sharing Plank which included: KFC (Kelsall Fried Chicken); chip shop fish & mushy peas; proper pub pate; Cheshire cheese; lamb curry; sweet chilli beef brisket; bread – an obvious collection of house favourites, to me, it proved a strange combination. The majority of components were good (especially the pate, fish and cheese) but I’m not so sure I wanted them together.
My wife started with the Crawfish & Crab Cocktail with baby gem lettuce and DIY sauce – whilst I know that quality crabmeat does not come cheap, she felt this was a tad expensive “for what it was”. The DIY element was a pipette of fiery sauce.
After the mixed success of the starters we were glad when the Lord’s new grill menu delivered – with show-stopping presentation, our 16oz Chateaubriand with half a grilled Cornish lobster & king prawns was a stunning piece of meat, cooked beautifully (as were the lobster and prawns.) The veg was great quality too.
My Whole Rainbow Trout with devilled shrimp butter was another winning plate. My personal preference would see a little more devil in the devilled shrimp butter but I really have no complaints. The fish had been grilled with skill. The chips were good too.
For dessert, ‘The Most Chocolate Tart’ with peanut brittle and a Crème Brulee with peppered raspberry vodka shot rounded off what was an overall very enjoyable meal in a great, welcoming pub setting.
The New Moon Pub Company are good, honest and reliable operators with a proven track record of opening and running decent gastropubs… in short, I can’t wait for Beef & Pudding to open… it should quickly establish itself as the place to go for the best pub grub in the city centre.