We headed over to Brasserie Blanc in within the newly refurbished Manchester Airport Marriott Hotel in Hale Barns to try their new spring menu which sees Raymond Blanc look further afield, taking inspiration from his love of travel. Alongside his Executive Chef Clive Fretwell, Raymond has introduced dishes from all over the globe to bring in new flavours, spices and textures to work alongside their French classics.
For Raymond Blanc, French food is in Brasserie Blanc’s DNA – food that comes from so much tradition, inspired by his mother and eating quality ingredients when they are best in season.
For starters we had Chicken Liver Parfait with truffle butter, caramelised red onion Marmalade on a toasted brioche.
This was followed by Potted Cornish Crab with Avocado, prawn butter & sourdough toast.
For mains we sampled the fillet steak in Béarnaise sauce accompanied by French fries and Spinach.
For desert we tried the Pink Champagne Rhubarb and custard with cinder toffee. This was beautifully created with poached rhubarb and ginger, vanilla crème anglaise and honeycomb crunch.
This was followed by Sticky Toffee Pudding with a dark chocolate, almond & citrus crisp, Normandy crème fraîche & crunchy nougatine.
Raymond’s travels have taken him to China on so many occasions and as a homage, gunpowder chicken with papaya salad now sits proudly on the menu. The dish uses Schezuan pepper, soy, chilli, honey and a sriracha glaze to bring a true depth of flavour to the chicken.
Other global dishes to the arrivals board include a slow cooked lamb tagine and a Moroccan mezze platter with harissa aubergine, artichoke, falafel with cashew nut cream, houmous and flatbread – inspired by Raymond’s visit to a Moroccan market whilst exploring the Atlas Mountains.
Closer to home, the smoked pork belly with pink champagne rhubarb and hispi cabbage takes you back to the British countryside with seasonal ingredients. And, with springtime being prime time for asparagus, guests can enjoy spring on a plate with grilled asparagus, cauliflower, courgette, poached egg and a zingy hot smoked paprika dressing.
Classics remain with the likes of duck leg confit with citrus sauce, moules frites with white wine and shallot marinière, and chocolate feuillantine – a French classic of layered sponge and mousse.
Open seven days a week serving a full buffet breakfast through to dinner, just a stone’s throw from the airport terminal, Brasserie Blanc welcomes early morning espresso seekers, business lunchers and evening drinkers.