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The Marble Arch Inn is a special place. Situated on Rochdale Road, a short walk from Victoria Station in what’s now known as ‘The Green Quarter’ it’s one of the oldest pubs in the city, dating back to 1888.
The beautiful Grade II listed building retains much of its original Victorian fittings; mosaic floor, exposed metal and tiled ceilings.
From the moment you step inside you feel like you’re in a proper pub, it just oozes history, character and charm.
It’s also home to the best craft brewery in Manchester.
Marble actually started brewing in the back room of the pub in 1997 before an expansion saw them move production to a railway arch down the road in 2011.
Although the bar does feature a couple of guest beers from selected breweries it’s really all about Marble’s own brews.
This is the first place to go to try their newest creations and the place to enjoy classics like Earl Grey IPA, Lagnonda IPA, Ginger and Chocolate at their very best.
As if this fantastic pub wasn’t good enough already, they happen to serve great food too.
The seasonal menu puts many restaurant to shame and even the bar menu is worth a look, featuring good value pub classics such as the excellent Marble Burger.
But for me it’s all about the fabulous cheeseboard, second in Manchester only to Simon Rogan’s fine-dining restaurant The French.
During the outstanding but freezing Grub Winter Beer Festival I escaped to the Marble Arch to warm up for a bit but ended up staying for an epic cheeseboard.
With a choice of either 4, 9 or 12 cheeses we naturally went for the full 12.
The quantity was staggering, the quality exceptional. There was far more cheese than two people should really eat along with a substantial amount of crackers and a slab of bread.
Highlights included Cotswold Blue Organic Brie, Cumberland Oak Smoked Farmhouse and Stinking Bishop.
No further food was required after that but I couldn’t resist ordering something that caught my eye from the specials menu; Cod cheeks, curried cauliflower puree and red onion bhaji with mango chutney.
As good as the dish was it was the cheeseboard that I couldn’t stop thinking about.
I found myself ordering another the next time I was in the Marble Arch a few months later. Albeit the slighter more sensible 9 cheese version. Needless to say it was equally good.
Dates of cheeseboard visits: 31.01.2015 & 18.04.2015Follow @BeerGeekBlog Follow @FoodGeekUK