The concept of sociable dining has completely taken off, not only in Liverpool, but all over the UK. It seems that rather than choosing one dish from a menu, foodies far and wide are preferring to order an array of smaller plates to add variation and excitement to their eating experience. As a result of this, a love of street food and casual meals out has grown massively and inventive dishes from all over the world are popping up left right and centre in our city. Combine the excitement of street food with our very own waterfront, the defining point of Liverpool, and you have Dockside Dining Club, a brand new food hall coming this spring to Mann Island. We.can’t.wait.

Even on a dreary, grey Monday, walking down to Mann Island, it’s easy to appreciate just how much Liverpool has to offer. As a local, I sometimes forget just how picturesque our waterfront is, the only downside being the slight lack of great eateries and sociable spaces available in comparison to Liverpool One and other areas of the city centre. Not for much longer. With the plans for the Dockside Dining Club well underway, it was high time we took a trip down to the site to see just what we can expect from Liverpool’s newest feasting experience.

Sipping coffee (cos, Monday) with the brains behind the project Andy Duckworth, I asked him to tell me all that we can expect his new big plan. With a more outgoing style of dining now a trend in Liverpool, Andy is hoping to provide a space that appeals to people of all ages, from different walks of life. Whether you want to enjoy a coffee and a piece of cake overlooking the water, take a break from the busy Liverpool One with some delicious lunch, or enjoy an evening sipping prosecco and sampling street food, Dockside dining will have something for everyone. Andy is really keen to provide a hub of food and memories to Liverpool’s waterfront and hopes to appeal to tourists and locals alike – whether that’s residents of Mann island itself, office workers, shoppers spending the day in town or people travelling from all over the world to visit our city.

Dockside Dining Mann Island

Dockside Dining, Mann Island

One thing you can’t deny is Dockside’s stunning location. Situated next to the amphitheatre and directly facing the infamous Maritime museum, Dockside’s Mann Island home combines modern day dining an architecture with Liverpool’s amazing history. With plenty of outdoor space for our up and coming warmer months, the dining club will not only see ten street food vendors inside but also make great use of their outdoor space with talks of outside seating in the form of deckchairs making it the perfect summer hangout.

We were lucky enough to be shown around the 10, 000 square feet site and were immediately struck by the floor to ceiling windows which not only flooded the huge open space with light but really made it feel totally at one with the water. Standing in the currently empty shell, it wasn’t hard to imagine the bustling hub of eating and drinking Scousers (or otherwise) that will soon fill the venue. The actual vendors and creative chefs that will set up camp at Dockside are still being carefully chosen by Andy and team but there are exciting talks of both traditional and slightly more ‘out there’ offerings, from good old fashioned fish and chip cones to bubble waffles, with the aim being to have totally different choices of food from each stall which can then be enjoyed in a casual, communal dining space or even taken out to eat elsewhere on the docks. A Prosecco bar is also included in the plans – a total scouse essential.

Dockside Dining plan to open at the end of March this year, just in time for the brighter spring weather and is set to make a huge contribution to the ever-expanding foodie scene in Liverpool as well as provide a creative haunt for sociable people from all walks of life. Exciting, innovative and packed full of food, Dockside Dining Club, we are coming for ya.

To find out more about Dockside Dining check out their Facebook page here.

Laura Nicholson