On The Quietest Street In Greater Manchester Is Where You'll Find This Genius Pizza Maker
"I fell in love the second I set eyes on it"
When researching restaurants I look at the photos to give me an insight into what to expect. I find they tell you way more than menus, customer reviews or the opinions of friends.
"A picture paints a thousand words" is a phrase that's actually truthful.
Pictures are especially useful when it comes to finding great pizza. Are the crusts properly cooked? Is there a wood fired oven in the background? Is the mozzarella oozing as it should?
Despite my best efforts, I don't often spend an awful lot of time exploring Greater Manchester outside of the city centre, so when I heard about Morley's in Hale and saw all of the drool-worthy insta-photos my curiosity was instantly piqued.
My first thought when I saw it online was 'that looks like really fucking good pizza'. I'd had a long week of travelling but with my tongue hanging out of my mouth with the hunger and anticipation rising I hopped on the Met and headed down to Morley's.
If you're not familiar with the place you really shouldn't be walking around Greater Manc saying you know the city inside out. Morley's is without doubt one of the greatest pizza places in the city, which is saying something given that Manchester is becoming a city well-known for the woodfired elite, with Rudy's, Chorlton's Double Zero and Ply in the Northern Quarter just a handful which often get the attention of the majority.
I'd have it in my top three in town - possibly even in top place fighting off close competition from Double Zero.
On approach, I wondered if we were going in the right direction as the street Morley's is on is so hidden away and quiet. Step inside though and the place is a hive of activity, and progressively got more and more packed throughout the afternoon.
I ordered the seafood platter (featuring the softest salmon, calamari and mussels) the cheese and tomato garlic bread and the halloumi skewers with truffle and parmesan fries as a main.
I ate mine in the cool booth sipping a pornstar martini looking at other happy faces around me.
Manchester is changing in front of our eyes and money is washing through the streets sucking creativity out of the bars and restaurants as chains swoop in. As I sat there eating my exquisite food I just thought to myself that this was the Manchester that I love - amazing, honest grub, fantastically friendly staff and bartenders who seriously care about the end product.
The cocktails are outstanding. An absolute delight and straight up there with the best in the city.
It feels like a proper den of iniquity - and that's before you've hit the secret darts rooms downstairs - The Oche Club.
Dark yet lively. The sort of place where you'd love to see the smoking ban reversed to add even more character.
Take my word for it and go spend a night there, you'll have one of the best nights with friends you could imagine.
The real deal.