I’m not sure when brunches become a thing but I like them; especially when accompanied by a cocktail or two. When I was invited to check out the Kahlua Brunch Club at The Loft in Manchester, I knew that Adam wouldn’t object to spending the morning sampling good food so last Sunday morning, we headed to Quay Street for our 11am sitting.
As first-time visitors to The Loft, we found the modest building by spotting the colourful Kahlua Brunch Club sign on the railings outside. Once upstairs, we were greeted by a team of friendly faces offering us hot drinks. We both opted for a coffee and made our way into the game/lounge area.
The first thing I noticed was the decor. Cactus, coffee beans and bunting in bright Kahlua branded colours made for an Instagram delight. Adam challenged me to a game of table football as our fellow diners relaxed on the various sofas. I’ll skip over this as he managed to win quite spectacularly (18 – 2 in case you were wondering), much the amusement of the staff who began to take an interest in how our game was going!
We were then called over to the dining area, which consisted of several rows of benches and tables before being introduced to a member of the team (remembering names is not my strong point so please forgive me) who talked us through how to make the perfect Espresso Martini. All diners were given pre-measured spirits in the bottom of a cocktail shaker so that we could all have a go at making our own.
Apparently, the key to a perfect Espresso Martini is in the mixing; plenty of ice and give it a really, really good shake! Mine turned out quite well with plenty of froth and tasted even better. I’m looking forward to whipping up my own at home when we’re hosting a party (or you know, just for a Tuesday night treat).
Next up was the food. Before our drinks, we’d been asked if we had any specific dietary requirements to ensure that they could cater for all guests accordingly. A dish of smashed avocado on an English muffin, topped with Kahlua and maple-infused ham and an egg, with a side of hollandaise sauce was served/passed down the tables.
I know that the communal tables won’t be everyone’s idea of fun but we ended up chatting with our neighbours as we ate and liked the casual style of dining. The combination of relatively classic ‘brunch’ ingredients worked well and our empty plates were cleared away swiftly.
Next up was a stack of three coloured pancakes with Kahlua chocolate sauce and two chocolate covered coffee beans. This was in addition to a selection of optional toppings such as fresh fruit, marshmallows and chocolate chips. The pancakes were average but made better by the sauce.
We were also given another cocktail: the ‘Chokahlua Orange’, designed by Chris Bains from Australasia. This was made up of Kahlua, tequila, cacao syrup and fresh orange and had a zesty kick, making it a refreshing end to the sweet course. By 12.30pm, our table was being cleared so I took this as a cue to move back to the lounge area.
I forgot to mention that Adam was driving so I ended up drinking all four cocktails myself. Given that I rarely drink these days, being a little tipsy by 1pm is something that I’m really not accustomed to so that was interesting.
The Kahlua Brunch Club is only a pop up so won’t be in Manchester forever (sadly). They are hosting more sessions throughout May, including over the Bank Holiday weekend and you can get tickets for £20 per person – if you’re quick, you even can get a discounted ‘Early Bird’ rate of £16.
This is an excellent price given that the cocktails alone are £7 each so you’re only paying a few extra pounds for two courses of food to help soak up the booze. Enjoy!