Updated: Tuesday, 19th February 2019 @ 2:58pm

Review: Guerrilla Eats pop up @ Port Street car park, Northern Quarter

Review: Guerrilla Eats pop up @ Port Street car park, Northern Quarter

By Tui Benjamin

A drizzly car park in the Northern Quarter was the site of a self-styled ‘food revolution’ earlier this month with Manchester foodie collective Guerrilla Eats launching a mission to shake up the city’s street food scene.

Traders took over a space on Port Street to showcase a celebration of some of the most creative and diverse of Manchester’s street food vendors.

Culinary offerings included tender southern-inspired barbeque pulled pork and sumptuous mac ‘n’ cheese from Fire and Salt BBQ, grown-up luxury ice cream from Ginger’s Comfort Emporium (Peanut Butter and Salted Caramel being the most popular flavour) and spicy Indian dosa pancakes from Chaat Cart.

Also proffering their range of delectable treats wares were traders Dirty Dogs Hot Dogs, The BarnHouse Bistro, Sugar Bun Sisters and Las Paelleras.

Organiser Mal O’Connor estimated that at least 250 people bought food from the street traders over the weekend and said the first outing had been a great success for all traders.

“Even in the cold and the rain, people trekked out to find us and it was so inspiring to see how many people were interested in the street food movement,” he said.

“After talking with the group, we’re already fired up and starting to plan our next event for 2013 – next time we plan to do it even bigger.”

Claire Kelsey, of Ginger’s Comfort Emporium didn’t make a good turnover at the event but said it was encouraging the ‘risky venture’ had a turnout at all and hopes to support future Guerrilla Eats events where she can.

“I think it can be built on,” she said.

“Lighting and entertainment are a must, and a drinks license is a bonus.

“Because you’re trying to start something very new to Manchester it wasn’t a failure, but had this been another event or market it would be a different answer.”

Sean Robinson, of Dirty Dogs Hot Dogs, said street food makes sense and is the best way to bring new flavours to local people.

“Guerrilla Eats celebrates people who are passionate about the food they make and bring us together with people who are passionate about the food they eat,” he said.

“It’s fun, relaxed, inclusive food that makes people happy – there’s not a starched napkin stiff upper lip in sight!”

Alan Fox, director of streetfood.org.uk, thinks 2012 has been the year that cities outside London have fully opened up to the street food revolution but that that 2013 has the potential to be even better.

“It used to be the case that London was the only city where events like this were taking place, but now there is no doubt that other cities are opening their eyes to street food,” he said.

“I think there certainly is an opportunity for a street food revolution to take off in Manchester.”

Mr Fox said it is only a matter of time before councils start to see the benefits of events like these and assist with opening up more public spaces.

“It’s the opportunity to get people to gather together in places they might not usually gather in, and to foster community spirit through events,” he said.

“There’s definitely the opportunity for more entrepreneurs who see potential in the movement to get involved.”

For more information go to www.guerrillaeats.co.uk, email guerrillaeats@gmail.com or follow @guerrilla_eats on Twitter.

Picture courtesy of Guerilla Eats, with thanks.

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