#FirstThursday with Gilkes Street Artists

Gilkes Street Artists will be taking part in this month’s #FirstThursday line-up with an Open Studio Evening on 6 August, 6-9pm.

#FirstThursday began in July and is an agreed action by many of the Art Spaces and Art Studios in Middlesbrough, to work together to collectively promote a series of co-ordinated events on the first Thursday of each month.

The Gilkes Street Studios are located in the Brentnall Business Centre on Gilkes Street and will give the public a chance to explore behind the scenes of this vibrant and creative collective.

The group officially began back in 2012 and was founded by Emma Bennett, Jenni Thirlwell and John Wheeler at the former Cleveland Crafts Centre and moved over the road in April last year to the Brentnall Business Centre when the Crafts Centre was sold.

Artist Emma Bennett explained   “We have settled into the new spaces very well and the artists are happy working here.  On the open evening visitors will be able to meet and chat to the artists about their work, we have eight artists working at the studios and a lot of work being made including various types of painting, drawing, printing, embroidery and tapestry weaving.

Having open studio events gives the public a chance to see artist’s work in progress and perhaps purchase an original artwork or handmade gift.  Also some of the artists will have details of creative workshops people can sign up to”.

Group member, John Wheeler currently has an exhibition of paintings at the Pyramid Gallery, York which runs until September.

Artist Jenni Thirlwell stated “John had a really successful preview with one of his paintings selling before the actual opening. The artists made the trip on the day which is good for us all to get out of the studios together”.

All of the studios are located on the first floor (unfortunately no wheelchair access available) and accessed via the main doorway on Gilkes Street.

The entrance area of the Business Centre displays the permanent site-specific wall painting ‘Speaker’ completed by one of the artists Emma Bennett in 2014.

When questioned Emma said

 “The painting is made up of four colours including vivid orange and dark brown chosen to be sympathetic with the era of the building, to work alongside the original interior teak woodwork and converse with the neighbouring building, Broadcasting House.

I spent a lot of time looking at the space, the Business Centre stands in the shadow of Broadcasting House which had a huge influence on the final choices of colours and forms I used.

The title ‘Speaker’ references a 1970’s music speaker, I see the centre as the ‘speaker’ and Broadcasting House as the ‘Hi-fi’, and to me that is the sort of relationship the buildings have with each other.  The managers and the other businesses within the centre really welcomed the idea of me developing my painting in this way and were very happy with the end result”.

You can take a closer look at Gilkes Street artists and their work on their website or befriend them on facebook or follow them on twitter.

(Thanks to Emma Bennett)


Twitter    @GilkesStArtists facebook      https://www.facebook.com/gilkesstreet.artists



George Friend Launches New £500K 3G Pitch

It was apt that Boro’s community champion launched a major new facility for the community with a fully refurbished half a million pound state of the art 3G pitch. Under the stewardship of MFC Foundation every part of the community from youngsters, to ladies, disabled, everyone will get the same enjoyment George Friend experienced on it yesterday with a group of local school children.

With the help of George, the Deputy Mayor of Redcar and East Cleveland and also Foundation chairman Stuart Smith, Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation unveiled a refurbished full-size 3G floodlit pitch at the Club’s Herlingshaw site, following an investment of £447,142 by the Premier League and The FA Facilities Fund.

A tanned George Friend broke off from the final days of his holiday to pose for photos with the youngsters and then join in their practice matches. He then kindly answered a few questions. I didn’t even bother to ask him if he was staying at Middlesbrough. Am sure he is totally bored stupid by the rumours. He is certainly looking forward to the challenge ahead with Boro.

So, first the interview then more details about that incredible new facility, the 3G pitch.

Q: You must be impressed to see this new 3G pitch that will be used by so many groups of people right across the community.

GF: It is an amazing facility. It obviously costs a lot. I am sure it will give back a lot. I look forward to coming down and seeing everyone using it. It really is finished to a professional standard and it is a really good piece of equipment. I hope everyone on Teesside is able to enjoy it as much as I have today.

Q: The children here today seemed to really enjoy it too.

GF: The kids have been brilliant, running around on it and chasing me about. It is superb, honestly we are very fortunate to have something like this. I wish I had something like this when I was growing up.

Q: And obviously all year round use.

GF: That is the beauty of it. A lot of grass pitches in the past or different surfaces aren’t brilliant all year round but some like this you could go on it any weather. The snow we get here in December/January it will be perfect and then on a hot day like this it is perfect and I’m sure it will be well used through the Foundation.

Q: The last time we spoke to you was just before Wembley. Obviously we are disappointed about that but are you looking forward to the new season now?
GF: Yes, that was disappointing but we have got to bounce back and we saw how Derby faired in the end after they lost and they didn’t even make the play offs last year and we don’t want to replocate that. We want to do one better really if anything. It is going to be a long, tough season but we are confident there won’t be any hangover that is for sure.

Q: Have you learned any lessons do you think?

GF: Yes and there will be additions to the squad, there might be a few new faces and that will always help freshening things up because I think if it is exactly the same squad it can be hard. But obviously there are a lot of loans that have left and there will probably be some new people in so that will certainly help. That will help bring a team spirit that will miportant to take on the challenge.

Q: We had such a big well of good opinion around the play offs and Wembley it would be good wouldn’t it if we could take that on into the new season?

GF: Yes, if we can keep that momentum going. There was a special feeling around Teesside last year and if we can get one up on that as well I am sure we will achieve the success we need.


 Friend Stuart Smith

The site, which is based at South Bank, Redcar and Cleveland, is used by Middlesbrough Football Club’s Foundation as a base for a number of their club and community group sports sessions including use by their ladies team, disability groups and schools partners.

Simon Morgan, Head of Community Development at the Premier League, said: “Middlesbrough are a very community-focussed club and the refurbishment of the pitch at their Herlingshaw site will ensure a significant opportunity to increase football participation by local people. The Premier League’s ongoing investment into facilities alongside The FA and the Government, via Sport England, is part of our ongoing strategy to develop Clubs as hubs of their local community.

Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “I am delighted that a grant from the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund has enabled the Middlesbrough FC Foundation to develop this new 3G AGP.  This development will provide a real boost to sport in the local area.

“Since 2000, the Football Foundation has supported grassroots projects worth more than £1.3bn, investing into areas where the need is greatest and where it will have the biggest impact in terms of getting more people playing football and a wide range of other sports.

“With this funding, provided by the Premier League, The FA and the Government, through Sport England, we are helping to improve community sports facilities across the country and thereby the playing experience of those who take part. This latest project in Middlesbrough is the latest addition to the inventory of modern community sports sites we are developing that cater for the needs of local people who want to play sport purely for the love of it and to stay healthy.”

Helena Pinder, Head of Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation, said:  “We are delighted at the completion of the new facility. It looks fantastic and we are looking forward to opening it up to the public and local community to use. We would like to thank the Premier League and FA Facilities Fund for their investment and our local partner, Tees Valley Community Foundation for their contribution of £50,000 towards the project.”


Restaurant Week at Oodles

It is Middlesbrough Restaurant Week and if you fancy a noodle delight then there is only place to go. Oodles. Owner, George, has been satisfying Middlesbrough’s noodle nutritional needs for fifteen years now and he shows no sign of slowing down.

He likes to keep the customers guessing does George, as you will read he prepares all fresh food and so the menu is a mystery until the actual day you eat. One thing is always consistent and that is the quality. You don’t stay around for fifteen years if you are not always satisfying the customer.

Here is my brief chat with the ever amiable George Ooi about Oodles and the second Middlesbrough Restaurant Week.

Q: We have just started Middlesbrough Restaurant Week 2015. Was it a success for you in its first year in 2014?

George Ooi: Yes it was. Obviously it was the first year so there were many things to learn from that but overall it has been successful in terms of people coming in and trying new things. That is the whole idea of restaurant week, the customers that do come in don’t only come in here but also they try food which they would not normally try, given the fact that the value for money was there and the offers. So I have got no complaints.

Q: What is your offer?

GO: A lot of people are offering 2 for 1 or a free course with 2 courses etc. We did that last year but not this year. We thought we would do something that has a little bit of a gambling element to it. We have got a spinning wheel and everyone that buys a large take out or sit in meal will get the chance to spin the wheel. And because our spring rolls are sought after throughout the whole of Teesside that is what we will be offering.

So the spinning wheel will have, One, Zero, Two, Zero, Three, Zero. So, if you get into the Three segment you get three spring rolls. Get the One segment you get one spring roll. If you get Zero you go away with nothing at all.

So, it is the same as offering a discount but this gives it a little more fun.

We know that irrespective of if people like spicy foods or not our spring rolls are one of the items everyone likes.

Q: That is a summer food, isn’t it?

GO: Yes it is. And they can take it away or sit down and eat it here. It is a value added. 20% discount is old hat we just wanted to try something different.

Q: You open through the day until 8pm. Do you get people in mainly for lunch and tea?

GO: Traditionally it is very much a lunchtime thing and an evening thing, for early tea. Or there are a lot of our customers who are catching an early show. What is becoming much more apparent now, people are going to the concerts in the Town Hall and maybe have a bite to eat 7-7.30pm. It suits them down to the ground. So, our clientele tends to be a little bit more polite than maybe takeaways that open later.

Q: Talking of your clientele, last year you told me about how some people travel a distance for your food.

GO: Recently we have got a couple who work for Barclays and they usually come at 3pm. So, the last few afternoons when they have come in I wondered why do they eat so late. They said it is because we come from Gateshead. Everyday. I don’t know whether they have business in town as well but they come in usually 2.30-3pm. That is a long way to come for noodles.

We do get the odd one that comes from quite far like Washington, Newcastle etc. They would say why don’t you open one up in Darlington or Newcastle? But one is enough. I am supposed to be winding down, not winding up.

Q: How many years have you been open, George?

GO: Fifteen years, February gone. It has flown by. The blink of an eye. Frightening. The older you get time passes much quicker, as you well know.

Q: A lot has changed in the past fifteen years.

GO: Yes, for the better. I think there can be too many pizza shops in the same block. The council want this to be a café environment in central Linthorpe Road so we need to offer complimentary eateries. It can be a fight between empty units and income that can be collected. But they are creating an environment where people will come up here because they have so much choice.

Q: It is interesting that you are talking about people coming from work before they go to a show. It is a change for the better that people don’t need to go home first from work for their tea. There are food places open.

GO: Yes there are places open now. They come straight from work to The Purple Pig, or here or wherever and have a quick bite. Because now most of the places do open during the day it makes it much more convenient. In the past it used to be everywhere closing at 2pm and then open again at 5pm etc. So, it is becoming a little bit more cosmopolitan compared to the big cities where they open throughout the day. You have obviously got your peak times and your trough times.

Q: I guess working habits are more flexible now as well.

GO: Yes, they are. It is all more flexible and also encourages people to say I’m not really hungry at 11.30am etc I might be hungry at 3pm, so I want to eat around that time which tends to be a much more bigger city type mentality. That gives people the choice.

We do get a lot of performers coming down here to eat. They are setting everything up during the day and then between 4 and 6 there is a lull and they want to grab something to eat. The Town Hall will say go to Oodles they are open all day. So, we do get people like Alan Carr or Paul Daniels coming here.

Q: That must be good.

GO: It is amazing.

Q: Apart from the spring rolls. I recall you saying that the menu changes all the time.

GO: All our menus are done by social media. I use a software called mail chimp. A lot of our customers go on the website and then have a chance to join the mailing list. When they join the mailing list they get the dishes sent to them by email or follow us by facebook or twitter. So, as the dishes change we update our social media. People don’t have to ring up, traditionally they would. They will have a favourite dish but we don’t know when we are going to cook that favourite dish as there is no rota for doing it. It depends on what we get fresh and that is the dish we will cook for that day. So, actually I can’t tell you now until tomorrow morning what is going to happen tomorrow. On facebook or twitter they can tap into it or they can send me a message on facebook and I can reply to it.

I think it is quite good and different. And people can check up from all over. Also it is fairly instant because on social media now everything is based on real time, everything is instantaneous. We still get the old fashioned one or two that ring up and there is nothing wrong with that.

Q: The mailing list points to you having an awful lot of repeat customers.

GO: About 80-85% of our customers are repeat. They will come two or there times a week. Some at the University come every other day. Also with a lot of new customers, if for example you take a portion back to your office, then you can check online what else is cooking. We also get a lot of corporate clients. We do a lot of deliveries on a Friday. People on RiversidePark, Teesdale. We go as far as Billingham. I think the furthest we have delivered to is one of our regulars at Wynyard.

We are the only restaurant or an eaterie where you actually don’t know what you are buying until you walk in here.

It does mean we cannot participate like many takeaways where people can order online through an App because they have a set menu. In our case it is constantly changing.

That amazes me after fifteen years that there are people coming in here, they have driven for a long way and they don’t know what they are buying until you tell them what it is.

Q: They obviously trust you and like the food here a lot.

GO: The trick is that your food has got to be consistently good. Our regular customers just think do I like it spicy today or don’t I like it spicy today? Am I going to have beef today or chicken?

I get customers coming in saying I don’t care what it is George, the spiciest one, I will have that. That is very weird for Middlesbrough.

Q: You were saying that Middlesbrough Restaurant Week is an opportunity to try something different. It sounds like your customers are the type of people up for that.

GO:  All with no exception. Our customers eating habits are very cosmopolitan. Everyone that comes in here will be slightly adventurous. Look at our menu today it has unusual dishes on, people night know what they are. Most of our dishes won’t be found in a Chinese takeaway. The only you will know is by tasting it. It took me the first four years to educate people. We are there now. I hope anyway.

Middlesbrough Restaurant Week – Monday 13th – Sunday 19th July 2015   


Take a Taste of Arabia in Restaurant Week

There is a corner of Middlesbrough that is an Arabian oasis. From the outside it might look much like any other take away but step inside and facing the food counter is a room modelled on the Middle East rather than Middlesbrough. Somewhere you can sample Lebanese cuisine whilst seated under ornate, oriental arches.

Upstairs is another world again. Gifts adorn the walls where patrons can dine on floor cushions; the walls are festooned with gifts, notably a genuine hand stitched shepherd’s cloak. Then outside is an amazingly large open decked rooftop area, somewhere the Shisha Bar patrons can relax above the hubbub below.

Intrigued, I asked Mustafa a few questions about his Taste of Arabia and why they call him the Falafel King.

Q: Tell me something about your restaurant, Taste Of Arabia, please. I have walked past many times but tell me why I should come in. What could I expect?

Mustafa: The most unusual place where you could find multi culture introduced. But when I say multiculture with Arabia you have to see Arabia as vast communities, each one different than the other. So, you get the North African, you get the Moroccan, you get the Lebanese, Syrian, Egyptian and people from the Gulf such as Saudi, Kuwait, United Emirates. So, that is why we say it is the culture of the Arabian, we try to create something for them here in Middlesbrough.

Before I was here I actually started down Linthorpe Road, opposite Kwik Save but then I decided I had, had enough and went away somewhere else. I came back 5 years ago and saw this building up for rent and made an offer and said, right I am going to start in here. We created a place to chill out, have a good bite to eat. We invite a few people to share with us our experience. I have a lot of old friends as customers, they say you are still here; we want to be with you.

So, I introduced to them the food. It is not 100% Lebanese. Middlesbrough probably would need a lot of education in foods before that. We try to sneak through and introduce something. We have 40-50% Lebanese food here. We are famous because we are from the old frontier of the parmesan when we came to this town in the old days. So we serve that. I wouldn’t say that is Lebanese but you cannot be in Middlebrough and not sell parmesan. And to be honest with you, we are serving it to a lot of Arabs who don’t know what parmesan is. They come in here and they trust our food is Halal. This is a priority.

We don’t serve alcohol but allow people to bring their own. I don’t want anything to do with it; it is against my beliefs, my religion. But you bring it; I will provide you with the glass, good luck with it. I won’t charge for corking etc. People want to have a drink so I say bring your own.

We created here this atmosphere and we recently did this little alteration where if you spend a fiver you can have a meal with a drink.

I have a lot of Arabic customers coming from Saudi. They are from Sabic on the Wilton site. We are the bridge. A lot of time they will come in as a group. We entertain them upstairs (there are fabulous rooms and an outdoor decked area) where they can smoke shisha. We are typically Arabian style shisha. They sit on the floor and eat. They bring other team members because Sabic have branches all over the world. Sometimes they will get together and say we need a typical Arabian feast, we cater for that.

So, Taste of Arabia. I don’t want to make it like a restaurant. I will say, feel free, if you want to eat I will cook for you. I’ll cater for what you think is nice. And that is what I do. So, this is my taste of Arabia.

Q:  I am looking at your menu and there are familiar items such as falafels. Shawarma is something I see on a lot of takeaway signs.

M: Shawarma today is the poor person’s meal if it’s served properly. A few places have been shut down, they were not serving the right stuff. There are good places but it is for the low budget people. You have to remember there are a lot of people with limited money. We are catering for the people with only £2.50 to spend. We are the only place here serving falafels. No one else does it. A few people give me the nickname The Falafel King. They have been eating my falafels since I started in 1999 and I have stuck with that recipe. Or the chicken tawook, on a skewer marinated. This is a recipe that has been with me for quite a long time. I do the kebab but not the doner kebab but it is actually what they call kofta. It is minced lamb with onion, parsley and mild spices put on a skewer.

So, people come and say we want to eat that and I look at them and I say no I don’t think you will like it. I will do something else for you.

I get a lot of vegan. They go for falafel, hummus, rice. I make my rice especially for vegans. I get Mediterranean mixed veg, I get hot potatoes. So there is a variety because the Lebanese menu is 70% non meat only 30% of it has meat on it. We are here with a bit of grills and a bit of atmosphere. This is what we try to do.

Q: Are you from Lebanon, yourself?

M: I am. I serve Lebanese cuisine which is catering for all those people who may want to come in here.

Teesside University was the reason I started. The Arabs at the university had no place to go so I started the old place. We were the connection between the people coming in. When we started this place there were 250 or more Arabic students studying in Teesside University with their families. They were looking for a place to settle, which is Middlesbrough, I think it is the greatest for raising children. That is my advice to anyone because there is the University, great education here, spot on, my children grew up here. It gave me the boost to go and cater for them. We were so busy we couldn’t cope. We had five staff here. But TeessideUniversity no longer has those students, sadly. It is a big loss because I estimate they each put £100 thousand into the town every year.

We kept on because I know the town and the area and people know who I am. They know Taste of Arabia. So we created this.

We now need to bring people back into the centre. They are like a bouquet of flowers that is how I look at Middlesbrough.

Q: What are you offering for Restaurant Week?

M: We have a Combo Extra which is a skewer of chicken, some falafel, some hummus, some chips. It is a platter. With a cup of mint tea for £7.50. Or a vegetarian vegan, we take the chicken out and we put in burek, which is similar to samosa style. We put that, falafel, hummus, salad, chips, the bread obviously and that refreshing mint tea.

Q: That is a nice opportunity for people to have a taste of Arabia isn’t it?

M: Yes. That is what we are, A Taste of Arabia.

I also decided to jump down to £5 for a meal offer, including a drink too. So, come and have three skewers of kebab. Do you want it with chips and salad and bread and your drink or do you want it with rice and Mediterranean vegetables and tomato? Your choice. Or you can have the chicken. Or you can have a falafel combo a combination between falafel, hummus, Lebanese salad with the bread and the drink. Again it is a fiver. Half a chicken, with chips and salad. So if you have a small budget of £5 it will get you a good meal. Even kebab shops can’t afford that. We are doing it.

Try a Taste of Arabia in Middlesbrough.

Middlesbrough Restaurant Week – Monday 13th – Sunday 19th July 2015  


Enjoy Caribbean Style in Manjaros in Restaurant Week

I have driven past the eye catching sign many times but a sunny Thursday evening in July was my first time stepping over the threshold of Manjaros. First impressions were the heat and buzz of activity around the big grills. Then the laid back musicThe light colour of the wood, from chairs to tables. The plants as exotic as the sign. The creamy aromas of food being whisked past by a waitress.

It is a real haven from the rush hour traffic outside. There is a relaxed vibe about the place. Owner Tariq greets me amiably and after spending a little time chatting about the restaurant he leads me away upstairs to view the work in progress of what will be the new Desserts Bar. There is a big room upstairs that will offer some privacy for guests and then a huge open terrace at the back that will double as a private members Shisha Bar.

Q: Please tell me about Manjaros.

Tariq: It is Caribbean food as well as local, traditional dishes like parmesans.

What we are doing for restaurant week is offering a free dessert for all that have a starter and main course. This is simply because we are opening a dessert bar upstairs. It will let us introduce all the desserts to customers. It has come at the right time as well because it is the week before we officially open the dessert bar. It works out perfectly for us.

Q: Are they Caribbean desserts?

Tariq: No they are home made desserts. Things you won’t see normally anywhere else where like Oriel cakes, Snickers cakes, malteser cakes, contemporary ones and ice creams imported from Italy. Things that Middlesbrough hasn’t seen yet. It is big in the cities but not here yet but will become big in 2 years time.

We want to get a cosmopolitan feel, which you can’t anywhere else in Middlesbrough yet. It is simple dining here at the moment. There is no X Factor about any of our restaurants. One is Italian, one is Caribbean. There is nothing else. This will be with the dessert bar.

Q: What are the favourites meals people order here?

Tariq: Creamy Caribbean chicken, which is made with a creamy Caribbean curry sauce. Jerk chicken. Caribbean lamb chops, we use Caribbean spices, and everyone has their own way of doing them. One of our most popular dishes, even though we are a Caribbean restaurant is the chicken parmesan. You can’t get away from it.

We also do a hot wings challenge. We use a ghost chilli, one of the hottest chilli’s in the world to make the wings. Complete a starter and you get your main and dessert for free. It is a good little gimmick. It is ridiculously hot.

Q: Go home and get a new mouth.

Tariq: Yes it blows your head off…

Q: What kinds of people enjoy eating at Manjaro’s?

Tariq: We get a diverse crowd. It is multi cultural. That is one thing I like about it. It is not aimed at a specific ethnic group and you get all walks of life in here. Jamaicans, white British, Chinese students. That is what I like about it more than anything, seeing all the different ethnic backgrounds all under one roof, dining together. And everyone is comfortable with it. I think nailed it on the head when it comes to casual dining.

Q: The music and the décor is all very…

Tariq:… Laid back. It is not like you have to get dolled up to the nines. Back in the day you had to be smart going out for a meal. It has become a trend now, casual dining.

We get different age groups as well. We get 14, 15 year old kids coming up to the 60s. When marketers ask us who do you specifically market to as your target audience? We haven’t got one to be honest, everyone is our customer. It is that diverse. There is something in there for everyone, foodwise. Even if you don’t like it spicy, or like it grilled, there is other stuff, chicken skewers, chicken parmesan, chicken nuggets for kids, loads of varieties of milk shakes.

Q: You are in a part of Linthorpe Road where there are lots of food eateries, Pixies Diner to Akbars.

Tariq: Yes it has become like a hub around here for restaurants, for coming to eat. Initially it was just Joe Rigatonis on this stretch and then Al Forno. Then Akbars came and then we came. We have extended from one to two units. If we could get another one we would fill it. On a weekend that is how crazy it is.

Q: How long have you been open now?

Tariq: Two years. We’ve done pretty well in that time.

Q: There is Purple Pig as well of course just along the road.
Tariq: Yes, Purple Pig. It has become a hub for dining. It has brought life back round here.

Q: As you say it is very relaxed here.

Tariq: We try top call it fine casual dining. (laughs). A good way to putting it. Everyone likes the food otherwise we wouldn’t have customers through the door and it is casual on top of that. And the prices are alight as well. Put them together we have got a formula that works and long may it last.

And we are introducing pizzas as well. We are just waiting for the new menu to come. It is pizza with Caribbean toppings. Jerk chicken, lamb etc. Different flavours, Standard pizzas and bespoke pizzas with a Caribbean twist. Again, something that you won’t be able to get anywhere else.

The dessert bar opens on the 18th July. So, Restaurant Week will be like a free testing week for Malteser cake, Oriel extreme cake and strawberry milkshake cake etc. Bizarre names, oft the shelf. We are also doing waffles and crepes.

Exciting times for us. Food will never go out of fashion. Everyone has to eat.

Q: But people don’t always eat out.

Tariq: No but there are a lot that do. Especially in these kind of casual places and because the price is right.

Q: As you say in big cities people fall out of work straight into an eaterie.

Tariq: Yes, fall out of work. They don’t have to plan for it. If they are having a talk with friends, let’s go and get a bite to eat. I remember ten years ago it was nothing like that. You had to plan. Now you can just get up and go.

Q; Book for a Sunday lunch on a Wednesday.

Tariq: Yes, something like that.

I would like to think that we have happy customers as well. We have big student market because we are right on their doorstep. When the students come back there is another 20-30% footfall. That is how crazy it is. This next couple of months are the quietest. Students have gone back. It is Ramadan as well, with people fasting. Tthe weather as well, people tend to eat less or have barbecues at home. Especially when the type of food we do is grilled as well.

Q: Until it rains..

Tariq: Yes. But weekends are regularly busy anyway. It is just the weekdays that are affected. But we only have those couple of months without the students and it gives us chance to recoup. Search for new ideas, freshen up the menu.

Q: When they come back next term there will be some surprises for them here.

Tariq: Yes they have got all this to look forward to. They have got the dessert bar. We will also have a Shisha Bar. A members only shisha bar, Something very big in the cities now for those who don’t like drinking.

Manjaros Restaurant

186 Linthorpe Rd, Middlesbrough, Cleveland TS1 3RF, United Kingdom


Middlesbrough Restaurant Week – Monday 13th – Sunday 19th July 2015