Throughout the last couple of years in particular, we’ve seen the once-humble sandwich elevated to some truly remarkable places in Manchester, gargantuan creations that continuously push the boundaries of what can be done with two slices of bread as the simplest of starting points.

It’s a special kind of food, one that’s part of our daily routines from the moment we can carry a lunchbox. A blank canvas and an opportunity to be as creative as your culinary imagination can muster up. You know what, give me a proper sandwich over a high-end, sit-down meal any day.

In celebration of the butty, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite places in Manchester to grab one. From banh mi and bagels to hoagies and sky-high stacks—get stuck in.

Katsouris Deli

Katsouris’ colossal ciabattas are the stuff of legend among Mancunians in the know, from traditional club sandwiches to more adventurous forays like the Lamb Siciliana, it’s no accident that this Greek-inspired deli has been feeding hungry Mancunians for more than ten years along Deansgate.

Be warned, if you’re stopping by at lunchtime it gets BUSY, so we recommend ordering ahead and collecting.

113 Deansgate, Manchester M3 2BQ
Northern Soul

A proper local success story, Northern Soul have been serving up the most insane interpretations of cheese toasties imaginable for what seems like forever now, and long may that continue.

All their creations begin with The Soul—a secret three-cheese blend on golden toasted sourdough—before veering off into progressively more stacked sandwiches like The Pig on a Lead, which adds nine-hour BBQ pulled pork, or the Salt & Pepper Fried Chicken, which adds lashing of chicken, onion, spring onions and spicy mayo.

 

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Unit G20-21 Smithfield Building, Tib St, Manchester, M4 1LA / Unit 10-11 Church Street, Manchester, M4 1PN
Fat Pats's

Self-proclaimed purveyors of exquisite sandwiches—and who are we to argue—Fat Pat’s now serve their magical sub creations out of a window on Portland Street, proper old school and we absolutely love it.

All subs come in an 8″ milk roll that the team bake fresh every morning and guests can choose between tantalising drops like a traditional Philly Cheesesteak, Double Meatball Parm, Eggplant Muffuletta and the big crowd-pleaser; the Hot Honey Fried Chicken.

 

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88 Portland St, Manchester M1 4GX
Kong's Chicken Shop

The guys at Kong’s have quickly risen through the ranks to become one of Manchester’s favourite fried chicken spots. They now operate out of their own bricks-and-mortar spot after a series of hugely successful pop-ups and takeovers, occupying the former Cocktail Beer Ramen & Bun premises in the Northern Quarter.

103 Oxford Rd, Manchester M1 7ED
Micky's (formerly Mira)

After proving a hit in their original guise as Mira, Micky’s is the new identity behind that same fantastic team. Specialising in sublime focaccia sandwiches you can now catch the team operating out of the kitchen at NQ stalwart, Ply.

 

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PLY 26 Lever Street, Manchester, M11DW
Rustica

Another one steeped in Mancunian folklore, this no-nonsense butty shop is as much a part of NQ history as any of the famous music venues and bars.

Whether it’s a hearty breakfast barm capable of soothing any morning after the night before, or the award-winning Milano (chicken, bacon, pesto garlic and mayo), Rustica is a true staple of the city and we implore you to visit whenever, and every time you get the chance.

1 Hilton St, Manchester M4 1LP
Pho Cue

Pho Cue’s glorious Banh Mi’s are comfortably one of our favourite lunchtime treats in Manchester, and given the rate at which they sell out, it seems we’re not alone on that one.

Sumptuously fresh and crammed with impossible amounts of flavour, visitors can pick from char siu, beef, chicken, tofu or crispy king prawns. If you do manage to grab one, get a katsu curry sauce for dipping too, just trust us.

 

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52a Faulkner St, Manchester M1 4FH
Lapwing Deli

Another over in the Didsbury suburbs, Lapwing’s charming deli counter stocks everything from freshly-baked bread and local cheeses to mouthwatering doughnuts and fiery hot sauces. They also boast a sizable toasted sourdough sandwich menu that makes for the perfect lunchtime treat. Come hungry, as the servings are pretty hefty.

 

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109 Lapwing Ln, Didsbury, Manchester M20 6UR
Ad Maiora

Ad Maiora have become something of a viral hit on Insta, building a cult following when they began serving up massive authentic Italian focaccia sandwiches from their Northern Quarter flat. You can now order from them for takeaway in Ancoats, or pull up a seat at MediaCity’s huge new food hall, Central Bay.

The Bread Club

Over in Monton the folks at The Bread Club have been earning rave reviews since opening their doors, banging out gigantic butties to suit any and all tastes. Whether it’s traditional Cubanos, their signature Taco Chicken or a classic Club, there’s plenty to work your way through, so come hungry.

253 Monton Rd, Eccles, Manchester M30 9PS
Rack

Rack admit that they aren’t trying to reinvent the wheel, rather focusing on quality and a ‘passion for simple, convenient yet delicious food’. With four locations now across Manchester, in the Arndale Market, YES, Stockport, Sale, they’re making a pretty good go at just that.

Manchester Arndale, Manchester M4 3AD / 24 Lawrence St, Stockport SK1 1DL / 84a School Rd, Sale M33 7XB
Wed 1 May
Words:
Bradley Lengden
Published on:
Wed 8 May 2024