Escape to Freight Island’s Sunday Roast dinner is brought to us by the team at Carnival. With top quality meats and all the trimmings, it’s definitely worth coming down and having a nibble.
Before our starters, we tried the sourdough with cauliflower butter snack, which believe it or not did taste like cauliflower. It was warm and autumnal and felt like you dipped a piece of bread in soup.
To start we had the duck leg and the cheddar churros. The cheddar churros were different from any starter (or churro for that matter) that I’ve ever had before. However, as far as churros go, I’d say these were more like deep-fried cheese batons. A level up from mozzarella sticks, if you will.
Whilst the cheddar churros were crispy and cheesy and the pickle dip was lovely, the duck leg outshone them both. The duck leg, plainly put, was delicious. It fell off the fork and melted in your mouth. The red cabbage ketchup which accompanied the duck was unreal. Overall there was so much flavour, it was a strong start from Freight Island and potential the star of the show.
For mains, we had to go with the classics, a cheese and onion pie for the veggies amongst us and roasted porchetta stuffed with peach, sage, and pancetta, both with all the trimmings and cauliflower cheese on the side – a Sunday roast must!
The porchetta was very well balanced with a caramelised, sweet, crunchy exterior and a chewy and fatty meat interior. The sweetness from the peaches in the stuffing was a great match for the sweetness on the outside of the meat which was completed with an accompaniment of apple sauce.
As for the pie, the cheese and onion had amazing flavours, it was incredibly creamy and rich, but did have a little bit of a soggy bottom – not that that mattered as the pastry melted in your mouth.
On to the trimmings! Right off the back, the Yorkshire puddings dominated the plate (quite rightly so): it was nearly as big as my head! What more could you want?
They went heavy on the veg with arguably too many greens and perfectly cooked carrots – you know the type, a good texture, a nice flavour, and soft but crunchy. They hit the nail on the head with the roasties nail on the head. They were the perfect combination of crispy and fluffy. My only complaint was that the gravy wasn’t quite thick enough…
Cauliflower cheese is up next. It was good, but not the best cauli cheese I’ve ever had. The white sauce sat in the happy medium, not too thin and not too thick. We were told at the beginning of lunch that they were behind on prep so that might explain the lack of caramelised onions and herb crunch as described on the menu.
To be honest, we didn’t necessarily need it as the portions were massive and the meal was cheesy enough what with the cheese churros AND the cheese and onion pie.
I’m the kind of person who looks at the desserts first when deciding what to order – I have a huge sweet tooth. So it was only right that I tried what Freight Island had to offer.
The sticky toffee pudding – a post-roast classic – looked and tasted amazing, it was crispy and gooey with lots of flavour and a massive portion, definitely shareable. The other, somewhat unusual, dessert they have to offer is grilled English strawberries, elderflower and honey mascarpone.
Overall, Freight Island pulled it out of the bag with their Sunday Roast. It’s surely up there with the contenders for the top spot as one of Manchester’s best roasts.
Sunday Roasts are served at Escape to Freight Island every Sunday 12-8pm.