New pan-Asian restaurant Fable to open in Manchester

By Hannah Thompson

- Last updated on GMT

(Photo: Twitter @Manchester_Hall / Shed Design)
(Photo: Twitter @Manchester_Hall / Shed Design)

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The co-owner of Manchester bar and club Panacea is expected to open Fable, a £3m pan-Asian restaurant and bar, with further expansion to London and abroad already planned. 

Joe Akka, who first opened Panacea in 2005, has reportedly submitted a planning application to open in the basement and ground floor of the historic Manchester Hall building, with a letter adding that he intends to expand the brand internationally, reports the Manchester Evening News​.

The Grade-II listed building was formerly known as the Freemasons’ Hall but is now a new food, drink and events space named Manchester Hall.

Its own Twitter account ‒ @Manchester_Hall​ ‒ appeared to confirmed the new opening, saying: “We are very excited for a new restaurant coming to Manchester Hall! Introducing Fable...”

The new site will reportedly serve a mainly Japanese-inspired menu, taking influence from Asian culture, and ‘fables’ from its past.

The venue’s décor is expected to be bold, including stylised Chinese dragons hung from the ceiling, and brightly coloured glass windows and walls.

“The intention for Fable is to expand the brand in to major cities internationally,” explains a letter submitted with the planning application. “London will be Fable’s second location and the intention thereafter is to take the brand to key cities across Western Europe, the Middle East and USA. And it all starts in Manchester!”

Akka made his name in the hospitality space with over-21 bar and club Panacea, which opened on Manchester’s John Dalton Street just over eleven years ago, and received a major revamp in 2015. Since opening, it has become a favourite with the local celebrity crowd, including footballers and actors.  

Fable will not be the only restaurant in Manchester taking influence from Asian fables, after Michelin-starred Man Behind The Curtain chef Michael O’Hare opened The Rabbit in the Moon site in the city, backed by Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville’s GG Hospitality.

With head chef and former O’Hare chef Luke Cockerill at the pass, its name comes from the moon rabbit of Asian folklore. 

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