VIVA reviews The Counterhouse
| 3rd February 2020
There were a number of real gems which we unearthed at the colourful and eclectic Ancoats eatery, The Counterhouse, where the menu is equally colourful and eclectic.
Tucked into a sprawling booth and looked after wonderfully by Andreas, I’d say the main vibe was Mexican but there’s not much of the globe left unexplored with its worldly menu which was delivered with flair and confidence.
There’s small plates and big plates which you can adapt for traditional mains and starters if that’s your want, starting from £4.50 for the small ones and £11.50 for the bigger dishes, all plentiful so bring your appetite.
In the day it offers what sounds like mouth-watering brunch and brekkie options, but we tried out the dinner menu which starts at 5pm.
Cocktails are also a speciality and a Night Nurse was the hot toddy half our party needed to combat the cold and ailments that are as traditional as a derby match this time of year. Margaritas were also a salty perfection.
We shared a plethora of the small plates to start to see how we went and just to note there was plenty of options to keep gluten-free VIVA happy, with vegans and veggies well represented too.
Firecracker chicken skewers were gluten free and married sweet and sour with their charred pineapple accompaniment whilst salmon fishcakes also hit the spot for those looking for a less spicy option.
Mains were equally fantastic, and I just adored my baked almond chicken katsu, which is just how I like it, sweet and juicy and a dish I’d go back for.
A gluten-free poke bowl managed to be both tasty (unlike how it sounds) and healthy at the same time, while sliced beef fillet with eggs and chimichurri gave the whole table food envy and tasted delish when I stole a bit.
A side of halloumi fries were heralded as the best VIVA has put in its mouth, they even looked like fries and managed to contain that wonderful cheese without going all greasy and leaky. Just yum.
We shared a couple of puds (starting from £4.50) and adored that Brit classic of sticky toffee pudding while a molten chocolate pudding also stood out from the crowd.
VIVA verdict: Excellent food, vibe and great cooking from all corners of the globe.