Canto Restaurant

A hole in your pocket and your stomach.

★★☆☆☆

Having come across Canto on LinkedIn, I knew I’d have to pay it a visit. The food looked colourful, healthy, and light; it was perfect for Fat Day.

Vegetarian and vegan friendly options, which are something that some establishments in Manchester still do not provide, were also available. I’m very much a meat eater, but it brings me joy knowing restaurants are at least willing to entertain those with differing beliefs when it comes to food.

When we arrived, we were immediately shown to our seats. A positive in this day and age, but as it was early afternoon on a warm Spring day, I think we got lucky. Be aware you may not be seated until your allotted time if you go during busier times.

We were advised by our waiter that two people generally share 3-5 plates; however, as the Fat Day participant identifies themselves as a pescatarian, we could really only share fish, which meant we ordered two fish dishes and one chicken, which I ate all by myself.

Salt cod fritters with tartare sauce
Salt cod fritters with tartare sauce

The cod fritters were the highlight of the experience. I wasn’t very pleased with the second fish dish we ordered, nor was I very impressed by their peri peri chicken.

After we had finished the cod fritters, there was an unnaturally long wait before our other two dishes arrived. This may be my pet-peeve, others may disagree, but at a small-plates restaurant, I prefer to have the food brought to the table together. This allows me to eat some of one dish, whilst preparing myself for a bite of another dish.

Chargrilled peri peri chicken
Chargrilled peri peri chicken

The food was very hit and miss. The Fat Day participant had a few bites of their cod pil pil with caramelised peppers and red onion before knowing it wasn’t for them.

As a big fan of small dishes, this restaurant seemed perfect. I was going to try a variety of different dishes, but for the prices you’re paying, I would expect the food to have been of a higher standard.

This was Fat Day, I want my main stomach to feel comfortably full, whilst having enough space for dessert. Canto left us feeling empty inside and for what we paid, our wallets were also empty.

The Verdict

Maybe the excitement of finding Canto and trying out Portuguese food led me to have high expectations and they weren’t met, or it just isn’t good enough in its current state. Either way, I will never know.

Not good enough for Fat Day.

This was my experience. You are welcome to try it out, but that’s at your own risk.

CantoCutting Room Square, Blossom St, Manchester, M4 5DH.

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