The Pen and Pencil

4.4
390 reviews
£25 and under
American
Sitting on the corner of Hilton and Tariff street in Manchester’s lively Northern Quarter, The Pen and Pencil takes its name and inspiration from the infamous mid-20th Century bar on East 45th Street in New York, which was popular with newspaper journalists and ad men – the original ‘Mad Men’.

Open seven days a week from 10am until late, the restaurant and bar not only offers a variety of beverages including cocktails, beers, wines, spirits and soft drinks, but focuses on its strong day time offering with great breakfast, brunch and lunch options as well as quality coffee and freshly blended smoothies.

The Pencil and Pencil has an array of events throughout the month with a resident DJ to get the party started every weekend, a weekly quiz night on a Tuesday, and its sell-out Bottomless Brunches! It also offers of rooms for private hire for networking meetings, private parties and launch events.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitising
  • Surfaces sanitised between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitised menu provided
  • Sanitiser or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 390 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Energetic
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SA
SandraA
1 review
Dined a day ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really nice venue, had a late lunch then drinks, food great, service excellent, would go again!

OT
OpenTable Diner
London
3 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really friendly and great staff. Quick service and nice food

C
vipCavy
Manchester
145 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Everything absolutely great, except the soft shell crab which was too oily and deep fried. Lovely burgers _ best I have had in a while. Service pretty good too. Well done.

J
Jack
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The P&P breakfast was very good, the bacon was a bit on the crispy side for me but overall it was delicious!

NS
NicolaS
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on 21 November 2021
Overall3food2service4ambience4

Service was good , however the crab burger was like a lump of deep fried fat with very little crab.
The feta and avocado was ok
The third fish didn’t come with the other two and when we queried it she said sorry they had run out of tacos !
So food not great.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on 21 November 2021
Overall4food3service4ambience5

Burnt food in places, messy presentation on an other- mine was fine though. Good ambience

OT
OpenTable Diner
Edinburgh
1 review
Dined on 21 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of the best veggie breakfasts I’ve had. Staff are lovely and the winter berry Bellini is a must. Can’t wait to go back ❤️

KS
KatieS
Cheshire
2 reviews
Dined on 20 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We went for brunch on a Saturday.
The selection available is great, each dish was delicious, the staff were top notch and the place, fun and quirky.
We would easily fo back!

R
Rares
Manchester
1 review
Dined on 15 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very tasty food, excellent customer service and a pleasant atmosphere. Appreciate that the music wasn't very loud :)

MC
MaeC
1 review
Dined on 15 November 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience5

The service was wonderful, with great staff and quick responses. The vibe of the venue was perfect for a Monday evening and created a great and relaxing atmosphere that still had energy. The P&P burger was delicious and perfectly cooked, i unfortunately just wasn’t a fan of the buttermilk chicken burger as the sheer amount of
Red slaw overwhelmed the burger I personally felt. The chicken itself was tasty though!

SB
ShelleyB
1 review
Dined on 13 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great cocktails. Friendly staff. Recommend booking a table as very busy. Enjoyed our time there and will definitely return.

S
Star
Berkshire
2 reviews
Dined on 13 November 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Excellent atmosphere, the food was great and good value for money. Service was good but just lacked attention to detail, no napkins or side plates for the chicken wings. Staff really friendly.

B
Ben39
1 review
Dined on 13 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very good customer service and food was amazing, would recommend to anyone 😍

JW
JaneW
Manchester
2 reviews
Dined on 12 November 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Booked a meal Friday evening with 4 friends. The atmosphere was lively and we were made to feel very welcome.
The food was delicious. We will definitely be back

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on 10 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First time in pen and pencil and was very impressed. Staff were amazing, food was fantastic. Atmosphere was really nice. Will be visiting again.

C
Charlotte
Yorkshire
4 reviews
Dined on 7 November 2021
Overall2food1service2ambience3

I’d seen this recommended a lot so I was really excited to try it with my friends who were visiting Manchester. Unfortunately, I left hugely disappointed. I ordered their take on a full English breakfast. Firstly, they were unwilling to swap out one item of the breakfast for another without an extra cost (I know restaurants don’t ‘have’ to allow this free of charge, but every single other place I’ve been to for breakfast have been more than accommodating, so this really stood out as being rather awkward). Secondly, my breakfast arrived cold - and I mean freezing cold. I left most of it. It’s a shame because it had real potential.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Edinburgh
2 reviews
Dined on 6 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fab food and drinks and lovely staff

OT
OpenTable Diner
Kent
1 review
Dined on 6 November 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Forgot one of the parts of our meal,
Staff were happy to sort it out but unfortunately too late in meal, staff were very lovely and kind.

C
Catherine
Buckinghamshire
3 reviews
Dined on 5 November 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience3

Some of the best chicken wings I've had in Manchester. Having my main with a different side was no problem. Only downside of this place is that the seats were v uncomfortable. We probably would have stayed for another drink if they weren't

OT
OpenTable Diner
London
1 review
Dined on 5 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, friendly staff and amazing cocktails

H
Hellox
Oxford
27 reviews
Dined on 5 November 2021
Overall2food1service2ambience2

Slow service and poor food.
Soft shell crab burger was awful. Minuscule crab drowned in sauce served with chips that had soaked up lots of oil (over cooked?). Had to send it back; altogether unappetising.
Breakfast was also cold and had to be returned.
Replacement dishes were ok.
What’s with the mountain of red cabbage served with the chicken? Weird.

S
Sazb
London
1 review
Dined on 5 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely food, lovely staff! Will be back for sure!

C
Chris
Manchester
1 review
Dined on 1 November 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great prices Plenty to choose from the menu. Friendly and helpful staff.

BW
BeckyW
1 review
Dined on 31 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

David was our waiter and he was fantastic! Really helpful and friendly, would definitely go again

E
Emily
Norfolk
1 review
Dined on 31 October 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Staff were very friendly and accommodating despite a mix up with our booking. The prosecco to celebrate our anniversary was a lovely touch and very well presented - as were all of our drinks!

HD
HollyD
1 review
Dined on 24 October 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Tasty food, nice decor and friendly staff. We had brunch.

MR
MiaR
Manchester
2 reviews
Dined on 18 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had the best breakfast ever with my friends. Our week couldn't start better. It was a nice Minday morning defenatly I will come back soon. The food amazing and good price and the waitress so nice with us. Amazing team guys thank you

BS
BarbaraS
Manchester
1 review
Dined on 17 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very nice place with amazing atmosphere. Food was delicious and came very quickly. I would definitely recommend

J
Jennifer
1 review
Dined on 16 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The staff were lovely and friendly. I enjoyed the atmosphere and the food was great.

NP
NigelP
Norfolk
3 reviews
Dined on 16 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What a lovely bar with a really nice brunch, the staff were very friendly and will definitely visit again

RU
RoryU
1 review
Dined on 15 October 2021
Overall3food5service2ambience4

We specifically chose the standard rather than high table option. However, on arrival we were shoved into a corner by the door on a high table.

The food really was great, although my partner did remark that the crab burger was more batter than crab. There were no staff greeting on arrival, and after being seated we were practically forgotten about. I was told it would be table service, yet I was only offered one chance to order and had to get up and walk to the other side of the room to get any staff to take further orders.

I believe we fell victim to being a couple and received no priority compared to the group bookings that were being constantly attended to. The music was so loud that it really felt like I was trying to eat in a club. Which is a shame because the food really was good.

OT
OpenTable Diner
London
3 reviews
Dined on 15 October 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience3

Loved it the food was amazing and very filling, the menu had so much to choose from too! Staff was great!!!

SB
SarahB
Manchester
1 review
Dined on 14 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a fantastic evening and the food was amazing! Would definitely recommend and will be returning again.

K
Kazz
Cumbria
1 review
Dined on 9 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fabulous food and exceptional service. Busy bar but no long wait for food and drinks.

M
Markymarkhx
Yorkshire
2 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely food, lovely staff. Thanks for a lovely lunch x

AC
AaronCoussell
Manchester
1 review
Dined on 2 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

1st time been here food and drinks were fantastic and tbe staff were so friendly would definitely go back

M
Maced
1 review
Dined on 2 October 2021
Overall3food1service1ambience1

Service was awful, small place felt squished in.
Felt like I was sitting on the next tables lab.

SS
SophieS
1 review
Dined on 2 October 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Incredible food! Lovely staff and brilliant atmosphere! Oh

JL
JennieL
Manchester
3 reviews
Dined on 30 September 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always great service and food! Good vibe with lots of happy people enjoying themselves:) Would be lovely to add something sweet/puddings to the menu thou. thanks!

P
Puds
Norfolk
2 reviews
Dined on 30 September 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great flat iron steak and sides and everyone at the meal all enjoyed their food. Very nice!

FAQs

The Pen and Pencil does offer delivery in partnership with Deliveroo. The Pen and Pencil also offers takeaway which you can order by calling the restaurant at 0161 660 3303.

The Pen and Pencil is rated 4.4 stars by 390 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting bookings at the moment.