The Crispy Garlicky Calamari to Savour with an Ice Cold Pint
I had a remarkably bad day that left me craving comfort food and good company. So I packed it early and headed for Kitsilano to the Manchester Public Eatery. The Manchester is a staple go-to pub amongst my friends, whether it’s for quiz night on a Tuesday or any and all sporting matches.
Here, it feels like you’ve stepped into a pub in the U.K. – brick walls, leather bar stools, leather booths, and TVs that are usually showing soccer or rugby. Framed jerseys, pictures, and classic beer signs line the walls. Come here during a big rugby game and you’ll be lucky to get a seat!
Without even looking at the menu, I will get the Manchester’s Garlic Fried Calamari without fail. It comes in a bamboo dim sum basket lined with parchment paper.
I’m a huge fan of calamari and wok squid, but what sets this one apart is its simplicity. It doesn’t come loaded with spices and sauces; it just hits the spot every time.
The Garlic Fried Calamari comes nestled between slices of vibrant green jalapeno and sweet red pepper. The batter is perfectly crispy, allowing the most satisfying crunch with each bite.
It doesn’t overwhelm the tender squid, and adds just the right amount of deep-fried flavour – without feeling greasy or unhealthy. I can taste hints of garlic powder and salt in the batter, which makes my mouth water just thinking about it!
The raw jalapenos sprinkled amongst the calamari bring spice to the dish. Eating the jalapenos on their own is a bit too much spice for me. But, having them mixed in with the calamari gives each bite a nice, noticeable kick. The lime aioli that comes with the calamari cuts the spice a great deal and complements the savoury taste. You also have the option of getting tzatziki instead if you prefer something more traditional. The sweet red peppers add freshness to the dish. But honestly, I could eat the calamari without them and be just as pleased.
But, to really enjoy the Manchester’s Garlic Fried Calamari, you need to have it with an ice cold pint and a couple friends! My friends and I have even gone so far as to order this as takeout to eat at the movie theatre.
The service at the Manchester Public Eatery is always friendly and surprisingly fast during big events as well! If you’re looking to enjoy this gem at its peak, make sure to make reservations!
Restaurant: Manchester Public Eatery
Featured Dish Name: Garlic Fried Calamari
Dish Type: Seafood
Available For: All Day
Dish Price: $13.00
Flavour Profile: Savoury
Portion Size: Large