Don Giovanni pop up at Per Tutti
Following the recent announcement that Don Giovannis (manchesters longest running Italian restaurant) had taken over Pre Tutti on Liverpool Rd as a pop up venue for the run up to the end of the year, we decided to drop by to see what was happening there..
Per tutti is the pop-up restaurant on Liverpool Road managed by Don Giovanni - the marvellous Italian restaurant on Oxford Street.
My pal and i staggered in on a fairly bleak October day - definitely not late summer - to have lunch and catch up. I arrived first and was warmly welcomed by the delightful Em, who helped my faltering steps to the table I chose. All the staff were delightful - friendly, swift, polite and all that jazz, but Em was a wonderful main contact!
The atmosphere is elegantly informal, crisp and light. Other diners clearly included leisurely ladies, important looking business chaps discussing business and office/work parties and they all seemed very happy.
My Friend finally arrived ( i only say that because i’m normally late and it will drive him crazy) and we swiftly settled in for a gossipy catch up and lunch.
The Pal ordered a bottle of rose. Now i have to be honest, i would never have chosen this, but what arrived at the table was so elegant and peach coloured a blush (Nina Grigio Rosato) that I was entirely converted. In future, I will have to look at the colour of the Rose before dismissing it so lightly. This wine made me feel, despite the evidence outside, that perhaps the summer was not altogether over.
As starters I had a mushroom soup of the day with what I can only describe as “gravitas” - big, rich,meaty flavours and a plentiful portion. The Chum had the Duck and Chicken Liver Pate which - because he let me have a go - I can tell you was darkly dense with a pleasant grainy texture on the tongue, refreshed by the tangy orange element of the pate and the superbly tart cranberry compote that accompanied it.
Lovely though the first course was, the main course was even more delicious - and came in extremely generous portions.
I actually couldn’t finish my delectable spaghetti carbonara ( i make it a rule to always get this classic and any new Italian restaurant. You can tell a great deal about a place from the carbonara) to which i added chicken.
However I think the Chum won the main course with a spectacular DG pizza (cheese tomato and meatballs). It was fresh and gorgeous - not surprising given the new pizza oven, but so generous that i think if you wanted a light lunch, you could a have a starter and split one of these lovely pizzas. My Mate, however, scoffed it all to himself - apart from the nibble he allowed me. Mean.
We waddled out replete but without trying the puddings, though i imagine given everything else they are also delicious.
This “pop-up” restaurant fad is so much fun - especially when you find one this good - one can only hope that Per Tutti won’t disappear from Manchester.
Highly recommended: light and casual in the day but I bet it’s a great date night spot - especially with Home, cinemas and Castlefield so close.
By Jonathan Mayor for Canal St Online