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With Manchester Pride’s Big Weekend striking in August, we headed to local restaurant Steak & Lobster at Alto to discover what the foodies are raving about.
Steak & Lobster is an exceedingly simple concept. When you arrive at the restaurant at Alto, based on the ground floor of the Radisson Blu Edwardian in Manchester city centre, you are asked one simple question: steak or lobster. This is brought out to you in super-efficient time, giving you the rest of your day (or evening) to do with as you please.
Of course, if you don’t want thing to be simple, you can add a few minor complications. You can order starters and desserts. And of course cocktails, wine, beer and all the spirits you can muster. But for your mains at least, there’s just the two dishes. Oh, and unlimited fries and salad. And because chefs aren’t fussing over lots of complicated recipes, the food arrives promptly, so you’ll never have to wait too long if you’re hungry.
Service in Steak & Lobster was fantastic. The staff were friendly and welcoming, and one or two of the waiters definitely got our attention. They were helpful, attentive and good looking.
Onto the drink: we started off with cocktails. The Steak & Lobster Spritz is basically a posh Aperol spritz: Aperol, lemon juice, sugar and champagne, finished with lemon zest and served over ice. For £8.50 this is a pretty average price for a cocktail, and the fact it was made with champagne and not prosecco is a winner with us. The Sloe Gin Fizz is another standout cocktail: Tanqueray and sloe gin, lemon juice and soda, over ice. The staples are there too: a cosmo, a margarita, a Long Island iced tea and an apple martini.
Onto the food: we started with marinated mixed olives (£4) and chargrilled steak bites with dijonnaise (£6.50). Other starters included onion rings with a garlic and chive dip (£4), garlic and herb foccacia (£5), chicken frites with chorizo aioli (£6.50) and prawn and lobster cakes with lime and coriander dressing (£6). Having ordered a steak and a lobster between the two of us, there was little point having the steak bites (which are just small slices of steak), but the chicken frites and prawn and lobster cakes look great. The steak bites would be perfect for someone who was having the lobster but wanted to try the steak too.
The mains came swiftish after our starters, but not soon enough that we weren’t ready for them. Both portions are a decent size, although it’s worth bearing in mind that a lobster yields much less flesh than it would at first appear once it’s shelled – remember this when ordering. The free fries and salad on the side, however, more than make up for this – and you are eating lobster, after all!
At £17 for each main, the price is also fairly reasonable. There aren’t many places in town – of the same calibre and esteem – where you can pick up a 10oz ribeye cooked to perfection or a whole lobster (grilled or steamed) for £17.
For dessert we opted for knickerbocker glory and a glass of muscat. These rounded off a perfect meal and left us feeling satisfied but not at all bloated.
You can book online or call 0161 835 8903. Open till 10.30pm every night.