I don't really like shopping, it's not my cup of tea. My least favourite type of shopping is shopping in huge shopping centres. Despite this I find myself in the Trafford Centre from time to time, because it's near my house and sometimes I need stuff. Convenience is King.
Saturday lunchtime was such an occasion. I needed some stuff before heading off for the rest of the weekend. I don't think I've ever been in the Trafford Centre on a Saturday before (I usually pop in in the evening after work) and I don't think I'll be doing so again. The place was absolutely mobbed. Prizes for the busiest stores of the lot go to Hollister and Starbucks. Which says pretty much everything about why I don't like shopping.
Take Hollister first. This place seems to have stormed the high street with a very cunning marketing plan. This consists of doing away with the time honoured way of identifying your shop to the world, i.e. putting a sign up out front with the name of the shop on it, and building a sort of lean-to/shed out front instead, through which one must enter. The lean-to obviously acts as a magnet to the passing public, as there must have been about 40 of them queuing up outside it as I walked by. And what do you get when you are finally allowed to enter through this hallowed portal? Is it a bounteous, fragrant land of milk and honey? No, you get to buy an overpriced hoodie in the dark. Anyone know why it's dark in there? Me neither.
Hoodie in the bag, you can then go and queue for an equally lengthy amount of time at Starbucks. What joys await you there? Some shit coffee and the most tedious playlist in the world. They actually release compilations of the music played in their cafes, in case you want to recreate that Starbucks 'vibe' in the comfort of your own home. I can think of a better plan and it involves an idling car engine and a length of hosepipe.
Sorry, got a little sidetracked there. There was a point to this post. Honest. After queuing at Hollister and Starbucks for two hours I was feeling a bit peckish, so sporting my new hoodie and slurping on a frappachococino I headed for the main foodhall. I've been to Barburrito before and thought it was ok, definitely a notch up from the obvious fast food suspects, and more importantly it wasn't too busy, so I thought I'd give it another try.
I went for the slow cooked pork burrito with chipotle salsa. Rice, beans, salad, cheese and soured cream are all included as standard alongside your choice of meat and salsa. Guacamole is a rather steep 75p extra (I didn't bother).
It was nice enough, but could have been better. Can't fault the portion size, it was a big fat burrito, but contained a little too much filler and not enough killer. Rice was the most generous of the fillings, and who wants a rice sandwich. The pork was nice and moist, and the chipotle salsa was warming and smoky but not hot as advertised. The beans and cheese didn't seem to add much flavour-wise. £4.75 for the burrito and £1.50 for a bottomless soft drink.
A reasonable option, but I won't be rushing back. If you're in town I'd recommend giving Pancho's Burritos in the Arndale Market a try instead. Haven't been for a while but I seem to recall it being a better burrito and better value.
The Trafford Centre