The annual Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, opening this year on Monday 27 March at Manchester's G-Mex exhibition centre and running for two days, is growing by the year. The 2006 exhibition is 40% bigger than last year, and new features include the Northern Fine Foods Theatre, with demonstrations from the industry's rising stars and biggest names. On top of that, there's the launch of the first Northern Hospitality Awards.
In addition to 300 exhibitors, the 2006 show is expecting 8,000 visitors who can enjoy free training and advice from independent industry experts, speciality food and wines and the Culinary Theatre and Drinks Academy as focal points of the show.
Culinary Theatre Demonstrations from well-known names including Anton Edelmann, Marc Wilkinson from Restaurant Fraiche, Marcus Wareing from Pétrus, Kuldeep Singh of Dilli's in Altrincham, Andrew Pern from the Star at Harome, and Shaun Hill, former owner of the Merchant House, Ludlow, among others.
Drinks Academy Tastings and demonstrations from the UK's top mixologists, including Jamie Mckinnon, Wayne Collins, Andy Gemmell, Jamie Stephenson, Steve Dingley and Craig Mcadam.
Beer Talks The Beer Talks Theatre, set up by the Beer Academy, will run beer appreciation courses. Visitors will be offered the chance to attend 30-minute sessions, where they will get the opportunity to taste six beers from lagers to lambics.
Northern Fine Food Forum New for 2006, the Northern Fine Food Theatre will present talks and tastings from some of the regions finest producers, as well as the chance to speak to the North West Fine Foods (NWFF) team. The line-up of producers, chosen by Nigel Howarth, Michelin-starred chef and patron of NWFF, will include names such as game producer Ian Banks, bacon producer Peter Boddy and Bob Kitching of Leagram's Organic Dairy.
Gordon Ramsay Scholar 2006 The search for the 2006 Gordon Ramsay Scholar finalists begins at the exhibition. Marcus Wareing of Pétrus and the Savoy Grill in London will be joined by previous scholars and competition judges to introduce the award and take enquiries from young chefs (aged 18-25) who want to start this challenging and exciting journey. For further information visit www.gordonramsay.com.
Aspire Restaurant Once again the restaurant will be run by South Trafford College, with a menu featuring signature dishes from the great Yorkshire chefs at a cost of £30 per head. To book call 0161-952 4678.
Opening Times 27 March: 10am to 6pm
28 March: 10am to 5pm
To register (saving £15) call 01923 690699, fax 01923 690 680 or visit www.northernrestaurantandbar.co.uk and www.northernhospitalityawards.co.uk for details of shortlists and winners.
The Northern Hospitality Awards The shortlists for the first-ever Northern Hospitality Awards have now been announced, whittled down from hundreds of nominations ranging from North Wales to North Yorkshire. The awards themselves will be announced at a black-tie event on the evening of 27 March at the Lowry hotel, Manchester.
Best Restaurant Anthony's, Leeds, West Yorkshire
L'Enclume, Cartmel, Cumbria
Northcote Manor, Blackburn, Lancashire
The Star at Harome, North Yorkshire
The Yorke Arms, Harrogate, North Yorkshire
Best Chef Lisa Allen, Northcote Manor, Blackburn
Paul Askew, London Carriage Works, Liverpool
Anthony Flinn, Anthony's, Leeds
Andrew Pern, the Star at Harome, Harome
Eyck Zimmer, The River Restaurant, Lowry Hotel
Best Hotel Bodysgallen Hall, Llandudno, North Wales
Feversham Arms, Helmsley, York
Holbeck Ghyll Country House Hotel, Windermere, Cumbria
The Green Bough, Chester
The Peacock, Rowsley, Derbyshire
Best Bar Baby Cream, Liverpool
Jake's Bar, Leeds
Socio Rehab, Manchester
The Tea Factory, Liverpool
Best Pub Crofters at Holbeck, Barrow in Furness, Cumbria
Freemasons, Wiswell, Clitheroe
The Packhorse, Hayfield, Derbyshire
The Spread Eagle, Clitheroe, Lancashire
Best Newcomer Soup Kitchen, Manchester
Restaurant Fraiche, Oxton, Wirral
The Packhorse, Hayfield, Derbyshire
The Three Fishes, Mitton, Lancashire