On Wednesday evening I attended the Liberty wines of London event at Asha’s Bollibar restaurant in Manchester. This was an evening of Malbec and Indian small plates hosted by Liberty wines of London.

The first course was Pumpkin soup with star anise, ginger, green chilli and caraway stilton cheese kofta. I’ve never tried pumpkin before so wasn’t too sure if I was going to like the taste but oh my it was good. I’ve never tried stilton before either (I’m not uncultured with food I promise!!) but this cheese kofta was amazing. I never doubted that I could eat 4 courses as for someone so small I can eat a lot, but this was a perfect sized starter, to begin with. The pumpkin soup came separately and then you poured it over the kofta. Very cool! With this starter, we had a 2016 ‘Finca Los Primos’ Malbec, Valentin Bianchi, Mendoza wine from Argentina. I’m not a big wine drinker if I’m honest and I’ve never tried a malbec before and I never drink wine with a meal…only to get drunk (classy). But this wine went really nicely with the food!

The next course was a venison samosa dish. An English country estate venison minced with green peas, raisins and spices wrapped in wafer-thin pastry. It was served with a beautiful chutney. I think it was a chutney anyway, the wine had started to go to my head by this point. Now we were given a menu with a list of the wines that we had accompanied with each meal. However, I got caught in the rain and the ink of my menu has run on the second and third dish so I can’t see what wine accompanied this meal! From looking at the liberty wines website, I think the wine that I had was the Kaiken Reserve. It was a lot sweeter than the first wine and as I have a sweet tooth this appealed too me a bit more.

The chicken awadh curry was up next, a chargrilled chicken tikka with fresh tomato and onion gravy served with basmati rice and bread. This was amazing, it had a little bit of a kick to it but nothing too spicy. All the food was so beautifully presented and what I liked was that every time the food was brought to the table the waiter went through what was in the dish. Asha’s clearly takes a lot of pride in their presentation- definitely something important I consider when I’m eating out. With this meal, the rain has ruined this part of the menu so I can’t see the name of the wine I had but what I do know is that by this point my vision was getting a bit blurry lol. However, you don’t get a full glass just a little taster which for me as a lightweight was the perfect amount.
By this point in the night, I was a little merry and very full but there is always room for dessert. The last course of the night was the winterberry cheesecake. Now, I’m not usually a fan of cheesecake, it’s one of the only desserts that I don’t like and would never choose from the menu. However, despite this, the cheesecake was quite nice. I couldn’t finish it as it’s not my dessert and taste of choice, but I’m sure if you like cheesecake then you will have to take a visit to Asha’s as everyone else thought it was divine! It comes with a side of berries too. This was served with my favourite drink of the night, the 2016 Moscato, innocent bystander, victoria wine from Australia. It was incredible and didn’t even taste like wine…it tasted just like fruit juice. It was so sweet and refreshing, definitely a drink that you could chug back without thinking that you’re drunk. Definitely my kind of drink.
I had a fab night and want to say a huge thank you to Asha’s Manchester and Liberty wines of London for having me at your event. The restaurant was beautiful, the food was amazing and well presented and every member of staff was so welcoming and made me feel really valued. Thank you for an amazing night.
Christie xx