Thursday 13 April 2023
In the late 80’s, a university boyfriend who’d travelled to visit me, in my home town of Prestwich, insisted on a pilgrimage to the house of Mark E Smith, sadly now late but ever irascible frontman of the Fall. Two weeks ago, another uni friend calls to say that we must ‘do lunch‘ at a great Prestwich restaurant that is featuring on The Great British Menu. Yes, all Prestwich, my childhood stomping ground, … who knew?
Is there no end to the eclectic mix of fame and fortune in this small Mancunian suburb? (Prestwich also boasts, to name but a few: Victoria Wood, Elkie Brookes, Arlene Phillips, novellist Howard Jacobson and Godley and Creme!) Well, clearly not; indeed I could be forgiven for feeling quite the serial underachiever as a local of these parts! But enough of my life reflections, what of the latest star on the Prestwich podium?
Requests from old uni pals aside, we have already been once, but when I frantically text my fellow diner with the exciting news that chef Danielle Heron is indeed now on the TV, we decide that we have to go again. So let me tell you our latest trip to Osma…
What can I say but… an outstanding evening!
Our waiter is a delight. Knowledgeable, attentive and fun. He also gets full marks for navigating the hilarious confusion my friend causes when mistaking the wine prices for the alcohol percentage. (Oh yes, it will be a while before I let this one drop!) And then comes the food. We share five small plates and each is sensational, I mean I write my fanciful adjectives now, but at the time after one dish I just have to tell our spirited server,
“That was bloomin’ fantastic!”
Influenced by the chef’s time in Oslo, the plates have a definite ‘Scandi-feel’; fresh and light but utterly full of flavour. In short, each serving appears crafted to make your taste buds sing. It also looks beautiful. What’s not to love?
The atmosphere is also friendly and relaxed. It is one of those evenings when 7pm becomes 10pm before you’ve even noticed. We are having such an amazing time, that we also share a desert and dawdle over coffee.
So would I recommend? I definitely would. In fact, I cannot wait until my other uni friend visits is the Summer to try out the ‘Lunch Menu’. Whilst the evening is all about , “small sharing plates … accompanied by wines and cocktail” the midday menu promises
“open Scandinavian sandwiches and hearty salads – using seasonal ingredients from local British farms and producers – alongside fresh juices and great coffee.”
So for this evening a fond farewell to Osma, a definite reason to feel even prouder than ever to come from Prestwich, but be assured, I shall be back … it might even become a compulsion with me …