Living in Fallowfield halls you may be tempted to stick to what you know, venturing no further than Chesters for a late-night drunken snack, or a midday no-food-in-the-fridge fix. Your only interaction with the Curry Mile might just be on the 142 into uni, and I’m here to change that.
The Curry Mile is a stretch of Wilmslow Road, which runs through Rusholme, housing a continuous half a mile of restaurants, food shops, and takeaways, serving cuisine mainly from South Asia and the Middle East.
Having spent the last year living in Rusholme, on the doorstep of Curry Mile, I feel I am qualified to uncover the culinary delights that this busy stretch of road has to offer. Here is the Mancunion’s unofficial guide to wet your appetite for Manchester’s famous Curry Mile.
The first thing that caught my stomach’s eye was surprisingly not curry, but instead falafel and hummus, which is simply delicious. If you have only tried shop-bought versions, as I had before coming to university, you will be impressed at just how different the real deal is.
Some of my favourite falafel spots are Jaffas, Falafel, and Go Falafel – all boasting delicious hummus and falafel wraps. The hummus is light and creamy, the falafel is crisp outside, soft and not too dry on the inside. If falafel is not your style and you are a meat eater, then both Jaffas and Falafel also make fantastic shawarmas.
Of course, I should mention the eponymous dish. There are plenty of restaurants to choose from. These places all boast very different kinds of Curry and other Indian dishes.
Sanam Jalebi serves fresh Saags and comforting Dahls.
MyLahore is an Indian and British fusion restaurant which offers classic curries like Masala, Jalfrezi, and Korma, as well as various other Indian dishes alongside British favourites.
Mughli’s graphic art shopfront will certainly catch your attention and is a great option for curry when you may have a bit to spend on a more sophisticated meal out (i.e. when your parents visit). They serve Indian and Pakistani street food, and an array of curries, alongside other dishes including Chaat, Pakora, and Angithi. For drinks, they also offer a selection of ‘twisted cocktails’ (Students also get 10% off).
Another option is Chit n’ Chaat (An Indian street food restaurant): whilst they do not serve curry, they do serve delicious Indian street food such as Chaat (of course), South Indian Dosas, Indo -Chinese dishes, and one of my favourites, the Bombay burger and grilled Sandwich.
All along the Curry Mile, restaurants and food places are open later. This is especially true for the dessert bars meaning you can get saccharine puddings as late as 1 am. Perfect for when you want a late-night (or midday) indulgence.
I’d suggest Moonlight and Heavenly Desserts with mouth-watering desserts such as soft cookie dough, waffles, sweet cakes, ice cream, and gelato.
Sweets bakeries however are my favourite place to go for a sugary fix, they offer more traditional Arabic and Middle Eastern sweets.
Syria Sweets, for example, makes delicious Konfa (also spelt Knafeh) and Baklawa, they also offer sweet trays with an array of products that would be perfect to bring back home. Mal Alsham also offers similar goodies.
Delhi Sweet Centre sells Indian sweets such as Jamun in all shapes, sizes, and colours. Jamun is a soft dough made from reduced milk sweetened with a simple syrup and sometimes topped with dried nuts.
Sanem Jalebis offer another popular sweet treat called the Jalebi, a deep-fried batter twisted into circular swirl shapes. Definitely worth a try!
There really is such a plethora of options on the curry mile, alongside the types of food I have already talked about, there are other restaurants and cafes to mention that do not fit into the previous categories.
Gong Cha and Cupp are bubble tea cafes that stand opposite each other. Both open late (until 10 pm and midnight respectively) which means that you can continue to fuel revision sessions into the night.
Ariana’s serves Afghan and Persian food such as Ashak (Afghan dumplings) and the best Mango Lassi I have ever had.
Don Tacos is a Mexican grill, serving Tacos (of course), burritos, and quesadillas with plenty of plant-based options.
As a side note, I also highly recommend doing some of your food shop in any one of the supermarkets along the Curry Mile, such as Worldwide Manchester Superstore. You’ll find that spices, rice, vegetables, and herbs are a lot cheaper here than in your run-of-the-mill supermarkets (and arguably better quality as well).
The Curry Mile is expansive and varied with restaurants, cafes and food shops to fill your belly. With many places open to the early hours of the morning, they also fit in well with the late-night student lifestyle.
Whether you try my recommendations or search for your own places, I really encourage you to give them a go and explore the wonders that the Curry Mile has to offer right on your doorstep.
For more Curry Mile recommendations, follow UoM student Mark (@ml7.currymile) on his curry mile tour!