Pi shop is a studenty cafe bar in chorlton, Serving a range of beers and of course pie.
The atmosphere is reminiscent of a Dutch "brown cafe", that comfortable relaxing buzz with customers coming & going rather than settling by a TV to watch sport. (This was last night, in Manchester, United were playing CSK Moscow, if they were going to show sport, it would have been then). The beer menu is nicely laid out, by country, with spirits, non-alcholoic drinks and so on at the back. Austria and Belgium have the biggest sections, and oddly Holland is not represented at all (This could be due to the Dutch habit of keeping their best stuff to themselves). Since I was driving no beer for me.
The other main event is PIE, these come with a choice of sides and a little jug of gravy. Sides are a small selection, with Mash & Mushy peas leading the pack. The pies themselves are from Pieminister an award winning Pie maker (who it has to be said I normally pass over for Lime tree pantry, but thats mainly to do with size). Pieminster say their pastry is one of the things that makes them special, and they're right. No puff pastry hats here, these are proper crusted pies. Mum and I tried to disect the pastry, but beyond short crust & flakey it wasn't succesful. Inside are the fillings, some of which are quite novel such as the "Heidi" a vegetarian pie in which goats cheese plays a large part. I went for steak & kidney, after all if they can't get that right...
No such worries, its a rich pie with an ale gravy, and just the right amount too, its not going to flood the plate when you cut into it, neither is it going to leave you with dry crust. The mash was smooth (Smoother than I really like) and creamy, the board said it was made with local desiree potatoes, I find it hard to argue that it wasn't. The jug of gravy on the side was a great touch, we are all different in our gravy tastes (I like to add none) and the dished plate allowed for you to swamp everything, if thats the way your tastes run.
Its not the biggest of places and it seems reasonably popular so if you like beer or pies go along and try (quick before the 2010 good beer guide comes out). Oh and the largers ? Well if its in a bottle they'll do you an off-sale, so now I have the record holding Samiclaus beer to try, that though ought to wait till the 6/12/??
But fear not, I'll report on it here