The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

PLY

Elena Gibbs spins a 4PLY yarn about the Northern Quarter’s hippest pizza joint

By

When advising new contributors on what to include in a review, I tend to say the same four things: layout/decor, service, food, atmosphere. These headings more or less encompass all one needs to know about a place.

However, not everyone cares about all of these things. Some love what’s on their plate, but don’t care if they’re sitting on a gold throne or a Hessian bean bag. Some love the music, and are indifferent to hostile service. Some want it all, but to make it easier to digest the expanse of comments under each heading in reference to PLY, they are split here visually into slices of information.

 

LAYOUT.

It’s not until

you look around that

you realise how big PLY actually

is. Up a few stairs and through a door,

you’re faced with a large bar taking up the

majority of the front-facing wall. The middle has a

few low sofas and chairs for relaxing on, and either side has

long tables suitable for large parties and creative

events. The right side with high chairs that

seems to mark the spot for after-work

drinks, the left more suitable for

casual dining and creative

pizza-box doodling. PLY

has a second level,

which outskirts

the

perimeter,

making for a more

private and intimate setting

for those not wishing to mingle in

large open space. For those with work to

do, PLY also has an area designated to reading,

complete with a colour-coded bookshelf.

 

SERVICE.  Everyone who works

in PLY is also a really big fan

of the place. The staff are

friendly, upbeat and

so ready to plug

their own

establishment.

Customers are always

greeted with a smile and are

attended to in a timely fashion. Any

questions will behappily answered and

requests always welcomed; even the tap water

is served in a quality glass with ice, straw and a sprig of mint.

When such care is taken with no money involved. that

really shows a genuine attitude in a place.

 

FOOD.

PLY are the  proud owners of a

unique mirror-balled

disco pizza oven,

the object

responsible for

its production of

irresistibly chewy sour-

dough Neapolitan flatbreads,

all topped with a range of gourmet

ingredients. From porcini mushroom with

garlic oil to fennel sausage and wild broccoli,

courgette taleggio and flowers, confit tomatoes,

rocket and goat’s cheese. Gluten Free dough is also

available, confirmedly as chewy and delicious as the real

thing. Drinks start from a range of bubbly draught

beers to a well-stocked fridge of carefully

selected bottled varieties such as the

Beaver Town Gamma Ray pale ale

and ABC Crate Digger coffee

stout. Wines have been

chosen to comple-

ment the food

and the

atmosphere,

and a range of in-

house cocktails such as

‘Kid in a Sweetshop’ reflect

PLY’s playful and creative nature.

 

ATMOSPHERE.

PLY is more than just a bar-restaurant, it is a

creative space that plays host to exhibitions, artwork,

and youthful eclectic parties. Due to the many areas sectioned

around the venue, there is a sense of being in a school workshop, an

art day where the staff are the supervisors (also serving beverages)

and everyone is encouraged to think outside the box. Customers

are encouraged to get involved with the displays and have

some down time for artistic thinking. At the moment

they’re exhibiting pizza-enthusiast Scott Wiener’s

box artwork, where, on the opening night,

people could meet Scott and have their

own go at designing a luxury

takeaway container.

Previously, there

has been a DJ-

style pizza

booth

where patrons

could animate their

own topping-designed

slip mat. PLY’s vibe, put simply,

is fun.

 

26 Lever Street,
Northern Quarter,
M1 1DW

plymcr.co.uk/