Take a trip to Oklahoma in the Northern Quarter

Oklahoma Northern Quarter Manchester

by Carolyn Hughes

Oklahoma is a quirky little place that makes the Northern Quarter exactly what it is. Hiding behind big wooden doors on High Street, this is a colourful treasure trove of kitsch gifts, notebooks, light shades, greetings cards, retro sweets, as well as a cafe.

The cafe intermingles with the shop section with tables overflowing, and there is even a DVD section on the far wall. An art gallery promises to be downstairs but I’ve never been down because you have to ask someone to unlock it for you, which is a bit of a turn off.

I’ve been here to shop before but never to eat. I actually went out with a vegetarian friend to review Earth cafe opposite, but it’s not open on Mondays. However, luckily, Oklahoma is a vegetarian cafe, with loads of vegan meals and options. They have soya milk for drinks and even do soya milkshakes.

Food includes ready made sandwiches, freshly prepared toasted sandwiches, as well as hot food. There is a massive selection of unusual baked potato toppings, such as hot puy lentils with marmalade dressing and red onions, as well as the option of sweet baked potato.
Oklahoma chickpea curry
Lasagne oklahoma manchester

I had the chickpea curry with mango chutney on a baked potato (£4.90) which was wholesome and homemade tasting. It wasn’t too spicy and the dollop of mango chutney gave it a nice tart twist. My friend tried the vegetarian lasagne (£4.10 or £5.90 with salad), which was tasty but a bit rubbery round the edges – always a hazard with lasagne.

I’d heard the service can be a bit hit and miss here but I got served really quickly and the food came out even quicker. The only confusing thing when we arrived was figuring out whether to order at the counter and where to find a menu. The higgledy piggedly aspect of the wonky tables and the chipped enamel plates all added to the quirky charm of this little gem. The music could have been a little more chilled as loud rock music isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.

The selection of  vegetarian breakfasts with organic eggs looks tasty, as did the carrot cake at the front counter. Drinks include fair trade coffee, selection of herbal teas, Green and Black hot chocolate, fresh fruit smoothies and milk shakes.

There was a great vibe in this place with people working on laptops, some people with kids and others just out on a lunch break.

Oklahoma 74-76 High Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M1 1ES.
T: 0161 834 1136.
E: oklahoma.manchester@virgin.net

One comment

  • March 31, 2009 - 3:28 pm | Permalink

    Popping to Oklahoma for breakfast is the kind of thing you miss when you move to t’ hills. It is the only place I have been where they manage to turn peanut butter on toast into an artform. Good milkshakes too. Next time you go can you ask if they have any plans to open a branch in Littleborough.
    Oh, and they don’t play loud rock music all the while so don’t panic. I seem to remember the last time I was there listening to something vaguely Brazilian. I can’t remember exactly. I do remember the peanut butter though.

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