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Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Restaurant Review: Jade Garden, Didsbury

Had enough of trying to cut down on all the things you enjoy this January? Me too. Hence an impromptu Tuesday night trip into Didsbury, firstly to sample the remarkably good half price wine sale at The Pitcher & Piano. This is meant to end on Thursday, but the staff seemed to think it might last another couple of weeks so get yourself downthere while you can still snaffle a bottle of Chateauneuf-du-Pape for an astonishing £12.50 (or a stupid £6.95 for Nero d'Avola if you're still on a post-Christmas budget). The P & P has recently been done up, and although the atmosphere downstairs feels a little sterile as a result, the new seating area upstairs is impressive (and frankly with wine this cheap you can surely create your own atmosphere anyway).

The P & P also does a nice line in bar food, but we required stronger sustenance than this and made the short journey to Jade Garden Chinese restaurant, which was empty on such a wet January night. This meant we had the undivided attention of the charming staff, who were helpful when needed but retreated to the other side of the room when not, thus avoiding that awkward we're-the-only-people-here-so-keep-your-voice-down scenario.

Jade Garden is pretty much reckoned to be the best Chinese in this area, and the food is reliably good: we had Banquet D at £25 per head and found only one item (the filo prawns) to be disappointing. All the rest - crispy duck, mixed starters and four main courses - went down a treat, the undoubted highlight being the fillet steak in Cantonese style sauce. They offer a full range of beers and the wine list isn't bad either - we had a bottle of Shiraz at £14.95. They also do takeaway for those too weary to vacate the couch. None of this matters as I really, truly am returning to the gym next week.

Jade Garden: 743 Wilmslow Road, Didsbury, Manchester M20 6RN (tel. 0161 4456979)

Pitcher & Piano:
1D School Lane, Didsbury, Manchester M20 6SA (tel. 0161 4489326)

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