The presence of the Bee, the Manchester spirit animal, is felt strongly in these vaulted ceilings
17:15 and they dim the lights. Low hanging bulbs set in wide lampshades. Quarter past the hour they turn them down, come into their world and surrender control of light, surrender your politics, surrender your mouth, your nose.
In the 16th century, a man named Benvenuto Cellini sculpted a bronze statue of Perseus holding high the severed head of Medusa. Adorning the walls of the Mackie Mayor interior is a mural that recreates that statue, except Medusa is replaced by Theresa May, curly entrails of snake hair still intact.
It’s their market, they can do what they want with the interior, but it raises some eyebrows.
One comment on the Manchester Evening News website said, “Also if I was politically correct like them I’d say a depiction of a powerfully built man with a decapitated woman’s head in his hands perpetuates misogynistic violence and male hegemony.”
Whilst this comment has a whiff of mouth-breather internet troll about it, it has a point.
Moving on, it is perhaps one of the most beautiful buildings in Manchester. Walking into the Refuge by Volta in the old Palace hotel used to be favourite dining establishment entrance, but MM may have taken the top spot. You can’t help but be overwhelmed. It makes you excited for the new plans for the London Road Fire Station.
Firetop, aka the Red Head, and I’s first port of call was Reserve wines. There we found little pockets of humanity and endearing conversations with young sommeliers. We found Aperol Spritz, strong reds wines from Portugal and a brilliant natural wine from Beaujolais. It was both beau and jolly in equal measure.
We then went halves on cornish spider crab over toast at Fin Fish Bar. It was good, perhaps a bit heavy handed with the rouille, at least I think it was a rouille, a spicy spread at any rate. They do an exceedingly generous fish & chips there as well. The rotisserie spot, Nationale 7, seems to be turning a lot of heads, including mine. I will be going pack for porchetta.
Mackie Mayor is the new offspring of the people behind Altrincham Market, in their practice, they have perfect this operation at the back of the Northern Quarter.
The building that houses Mackie Mayor started life as a meat market, took a brief sojourn as skate spot, before being presented to us in all its glory
This is exactly what Manchester needs. The brilliant Time Out market in Lisbon is setting up shop in London, and they’ve already got Borough. Mackie Mayor is like a hive where customers, cooks, and vendors cross paths and mingle with fine wine and good taste. The presence of the Bee, the Manchester spirit animal, is felt strongly in vaulted ceilings of Mackie Mayor.