Roasters/Suppliers in the Manchester area...

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Roasters/Suppliers in the Manchester area...

Postby soma » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:02 pm

...are there any recommended local roasters? I went to an expensive Deli in Didsbury recently (admittedly a well run place) as I recalled seeing coffee beans beans behind the counter.
I went in to ask if they had fresh beans for sale and was immediately led to the tinned Illy in the back (with a nice margin to boot).

I'm aware that they're are many good roasters out there in internetland, but it would be nice to strike up a link with local suppliers.
I'm also aware of Roberts and Co (ironically once had a place in Manchester?) and will take a trip up to Lancashire, hopefully this weekend. Is that my best bet at the moment? The city is into double figures for each of the main coffee co's, but sadly very little on the independent variety (the suburbs fare better in that respect).

I recently got hold of a gaggia classic (2nd hand but have descaled, puri cleaned it till it's sparkling). At the moment I only have a Krups blade grinder to keep me going, and with that only supermarket beans. But even this is far superior to pre ground coffee..I had one earlier (it was the only decaff we had in the house)...absolutely awful. The supermarket beans were pretty sour as an espresso but pretty nice as a cappuccino (and bettered the moka I've been brewing coffee with for years).

I'm being sent a Ascaso I mini in a week or two, so would like some quality beans for that time. Would I be right in saying I should look outside of the darker, oilier beans and more towards the other, medium roast varieties? With blade ground, 'fresh' (supermarket) beans, I must admit the coffee when brewed properly with the moka can be pretty good (almost had that thick, buttery 'mouthfeel') so I'm looking forward to a burr ground, freshly roasted and gaggia classic brewed coffee in a few weeks. I once considered pre ground, sainsburys (et al) coffee as sophisticated...! How wrong I was.

Thanks all.
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RE: Roasters/Suppliers in the Manchester area...

Postby Gary » Thu Jan 22, 2009 10:12 pm

About the lack of independents in machester. I know exactly what you mean. They have some fantastic restuarants but little in the way of coffee. Piccadilly is crying out for one! Sadly though the reason for this is the lease's are sky high. Still I'm hopeful if property prices continue to dip the rents will come down too. Then I'll make my move.
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Re: RE: Roasters/Suppliers in the Manchester area...

Postby soma » Fri Jan 23, 2009 12:22 am

Gary wrote:About the lack of independents in machester. I know exactly what you mean. They have some fantastic restuarants but little in the way of coffee. Piccadilly is crying out for one! Sadly though the reason for this is the lease's are sky high. Still I'm hopeful if property prices continue to dip the rents will come down too. Then I'll make my move.


True, but the Northern Quarter could hold a few decent ones and I suspect it does one or two, although Love Saves the Day, I believe closed down in that area recently...saying that a new coffee shop is opening in it's place/grave. However, good coffee, sadly, isn't that high on many peoples agenda (for the moment at least).
Wine, on the other hand has a good grounding in the city...but it looks like Lancashires Roberts and Co in Mawdsley is my current nearest point of call.

Cheers.
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Postby matisse » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:56 am

why not just get the beans from steve at has bean? he's only in stafford and does a great mail order service.

the problem with the inde's in manchester is a big one. i was working for nero whilst in uni there and in just three years they went from 1 to 5 stores within the city centre. add this ti the plethora of star-bizzles and costas and you're running out of space.

lease price is a huge issue, obviously, but i go back regularly for work and i still haven't found a place within central/south manchester thata does a really good cup, which is a shame.

maybe i should move there and do it myself? :)
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Postby soma » Fri Jan 23, 2009 2:52 pm

matisse wrote:why not just get the beans from steve at has bean? he's only in stafford and does a great mail order service.

the problem with the inde's in manchester is a big one. i was working for nero whilst in uni there and in just three years they went from 1 to 5 stores within the city centre. add this ti the plethora of star-bizzles and costas and you're running out of space.

lease price is a huge issue, obviously, but i go back regularly for work and i still haven't found a place within central/south manchester thata does a really good cup, which is a shame.

maybe i should move there and do it myself? :)


Please do - I'll certainly pop in!
Nero must be into the double figures in central Manchester now (although admittedly, I find the Nero's far better than the others).
There are quite a few indies in the Northern Quarter and a new coffee house has opened in the Carvers Warehouse (Piccadilly Basin) called 'An Outlet'. I haven't as yet visited (and I have by no means an expert 'tongue') but I will pop in some time over the next week. I'm close to getting an office in that area of the city so hopefully I can do a bit of digging around (rent is usually cheaper here). But it's perhaps not the best time to open such specialist places? Subway on Deansgate did a good job before, unfortunately, folding - I imagine the lease on that street to be pretty high. Solomon Grundy in Withington do a decent cup (grind their own beans for a start) but nothing out of this world. If you come across anything special on your next trip, please let me know (I shall indeed do the same).

Hasbean is pretty much top of my list - and I will order from there, but it would be good to find a place nearby I can visit in person....wishful thinking I guess?

Cheers.
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Postby EricC » Mon Jan 26, 2009 3:15 pm

Don't forget Square Mile Coffee Roasters. 8)

http://shop.squaremilecoffee.com/
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Postby fred25 » Mon Jan 26, 2009 5:20 pm

Love says the day are using Union coffee, which apparently also gives them training - I had an espresso there recently, and though the people at the shop are really really nice, the espresso was rather thin and bitter. There's another coffee place at the corner of Cross Street and the passageway leading to St Ann Square which has a 'traditional' look, with big glass containers containing (!) roasted coffee - though that might not be necessarily a good thing, as the turnover must be quite slow and the coffee potentially quite stale. I have yet to try it - one of these things on the to-do list! ;)

Incidentally, I've always thought that reasonably-priced wine shops in Manchester were thin on the ground - love saves the day has a nice selection, but rather tiny, and the new shop (forgot the name) by the cathedral-ish has eye-watering prices - at least for my wallet. I'd love to hear if anyone has any recommendation - the only shop I know of (and really like) is Winos in Oldham (of all places!), but that's quite outside the centre....
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Postby matisse » Mon Jan 26, 2009 5:26 pm

fred25 wrote:Love says the day are using Union coffee, which apparently also gives them training - I had an espresso there recently, and though the people at the shop are really really nice, the espresso was rather thin and bitter. There's another coffee place at the corner of Cross Street and the passageway leading to St Ann Square which has a 'traditional' look, with big glass containers containing (!) roasted coffee - though that might not be necessarily a good thing, as the turnover must be quite slow and the coffee potentially quite stale. I have yet to try it - one of these things on the to-do list! ;)

Incidentally, I've always thought that reasonably-priced wine shops in Manchester were thin on the ground - love saves the day has a nice selection, but rather tiny, and the new shop (forgot the name) by the cathedral-ish has eye-watering prices - at least for my wallet. I'd love to hear if anyone has any recommendation - the only shop I know of (and really like) is Winos in Oldham (of all places!), but that's quite outside the centre....


can't help you on the coffee place on cross st fred, but wine!, try Reserve on Burton Rd in west didsbury, just round the corner from the met. closer than oldham?
Last edited by matisse on Tue Jan 27, 2009 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby fred25 » Mon Jan 26, 2009 7:42 pm

A great many thanks for the tip! Had never heard of them - will definitely give them a try! :D
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