Friday, 25 November 2016
Tuesday @ Y Fabrica
When I first moved to Didsbury, Mudcrab was one of my favourite restaurants. I especially loved their signature burger and fries (perfect hangover cure with friends), but was also a place I brought my parents, and I thought they'd got that balance as an all-rounder down to a T. They've recently re-branded to Y Fabrica: still under the Mudcrab umbrella, but branching out to offer chilled, Cali-Mexican food. Think tacos, stuffed jalapenos, margaritas; sharing plates and cocktails - oh yess.
I got invited to come down and sample their tacos & margaritas and so last week, we made our way over for what I hoped would be a spicy, flavoursome affair to warm me up on a cold November evening.
I've got to say the furnishings give the place a lovely vibe - big wicker chairs (a bit like the furniture at the old Grand Pacific?) dominate the front area, and I imagine in the day light it would look beautiful. We were sat a bit further back so excuse the photos as some of them are a little dark (sorry).
The team at Y Fabrica were so lovely, our waiter Orion (I think that was his name!) was chatty (but not 'fake' chatty), made us laugh and feel at home. He recommended a load of dishes and asked us our favourite flavour combinations and how hungry we were... which resulted in this for starters:
Chicken Tinga Taco - pulled chicken soft flour tacos, with crumbled feta, pomegranate slaw and pico de gallo (Mexican chopped salsa, I learnt..)
Pork belly soft flour tacos with apple slaw and pico de pina (fruity salsa!)
Breadcrumbed and fried jalapeno poppers with a salsa verde
I'm known for being over dramatic but these were hands down the best pulled chicken tacos I've ever had. You'd think that the tacos themselves would be nothing to write home about, you know, the meat and filling should be the main affair? But take it from me, I've never tasted such fresh, "homemade" tasting soft flour wraps. You could just tell they'd been made moments before. Their plumpness worked well to scoop up all the pulled chicken (delicious), pomegranate and feta. I was gutted as James and I had agreed to go halves on each others starters, and so reluctantly handed over my plate.
The pork belly was gorgeous too, so swapping really wasn't so bad!
The jalapeno poppers were right up my street too. Whole jalapenos, injected with creamy, warm cheese. SO NAUGHTY but so good. A gorgeous salsa verde accompanied it. I'd highly recommend getting these to share.
When it came to the mains, Orion was really good at advising on portion sizes, and recommended that we get the nachos to share with our mains, as James's dish wasn't huge, he said.
I went for the slow cooked lamb tagine (obviously), with pomegranate couscous (pomegranate's really having a moment isn't it?) and yoghurt. It was delicious; full of flavour - rich and tomatoey, and very generous with the lamb. The size was perfect too, although I couldn't eat all the couscous.
James was content with his fruity choice too; fried chicken on a bed of chunky chilli watermelon - it sounds odd but in all honesty, it really worked! The watermelon was fresh and a perfectly unassuming partner for a plate of crispy fried chicken. It's definitely a good wild card option.
We also got the pulled chicken nachos to share (the pulled chicken was so good in the tacos I was so excited to know we were having more..), and oh my word, they were massive. Our waiter brought out a huge tray of nachos smothered in pulled chicken, avocado mash, jalapenos, salsa and cheese.
We could've just eaten these and been full! They were devilishly moreish and we had a pretty good go at eating them all ("just one more..").
I didn't have a margarita due to 'dry November' reasons, but James got the 'Smokey and the Bandit' - a spicy, oaky margarita with a Maldon salt rim. He said it tasted delicious, so I'll have to take his word, and try them for myself in December.
We really didn't need it, but we got dessert. I saw something with Snickers in and couldn't get it out of my head! Icecream, Snickers, chocolate sauce and torched meringue - it was LUSH.
You can check out the full menu here. I remember seeing a sign outside offering 2-4-1 cocktails during the week before a certain time, so it would be a perfect place for mid-week drinks and dinner.
They invited me down to try just their tacos and margaritas but when we went to pay the bill, our waiter told us that it was all on the house - which sweetened our evening even more. Such a lovely touch, they really didn't need to do that! We were expecting to, and would have gladly, paid for the rest of our meal, but it was a lovely gesture.
I'll definitely be back - I want at least two pulled chicken tacos next time around!
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