Cosy Thai Bowls at Vivid Lounge, Ancoats

Vivid Lounge is tucked away by a pretty section of the Ashton canal on Great Ancoats Street, it’s described as an ‘Eatery’ – cafe and lunch venue by day, friendly bar and informal restaurant by night. They specialise in great breakfasts, lunches, cakes and Thai bowls.  So quite an eclectic mix.

Vivid was voted one of the 12 best sandwich shops in Manchester by the Manchester Evening News and featured in The Guardian – so I was looking forward to checking this place out!

We went for a quick after work dinner and glass of wine on a friday at 6pm.  It was nice to be somewhere away from the crazy Northern Quarter drunken chaos where you could chill out and have a nice chat.  It had a happy feel to the place! I liked the informal local vibe  – I was guessing that the guys in there were mainly local workers and residents.  Vivid Lounge is a little off the beaten track, so you kind of need to know about it.

The staff were super friendly and attentive and very relaxed, which is always nice.  We ordered starters of deep fried tofu and thai fish cakes.  They were delicious and fresh and I especially loved the tangy pickles that came with the tofu.  And for our mains I went for a king prawn pad thai and Jamie chose pork and cassia leaf curry, thai pickles boiled egg and rice, with some extra pork skewers thrown in.  The food is cooked by ultra friendly thai chefs (we met them) so unsurprisingly it was delicious, fresh and authentic. And I LOVE eating my dinner out of a bowl! I need more of that in my life.

As the evening progressed I noticed that whilst inside the thai bowls were flowing, Vivid’s outside seating area was becoming pleasantly rammed with drinkers.  It looked like fun and again had that relaxed chatty vibe that is sometimes lacking in the Northern Quarter on a friday night.

vivid lounge 1
King prawn pad thai, thai fishcakes, deep fried tofu with chilli and peanut dip, pork and cassia leaf curry
vivid lounge 2
A happy customer enjoys a Thai bowl, while the relaxed drinkers outside soak up the warmth from the heater

I would definitely recommend the Vivid Lounge – their Thai bowls are excellent, and it’s so nice to find somewhere in the Northern Quarter vicinity that hits the sweet spot of buzzy yet relaxed. I need to go back to try those breakfasts!

Thanks to Vivid Lounge for providing the food and drinks.  All opinions and words are my own.



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