Have been visiting Katsouris several times per week since 2006 - couldn't begin to count the number of times I've been there, which says a lot about the quality of the food. The carvery counter offers a delicious sandwich 9 times out of 10, however if you're not lucky, your meat of choice might not be available.
What really let's this place down is the terrible service and staff attitude. Management clearly couldn't care less regarding customer service and this is evident in being shouted at across 4 or 5 waiting customers for an order to be taken. The business started (and their other cafe remains) on Bury market and while this approach might be acceptable there, it is most unwelcome on Deansgate right at the heart of the Central Business District. The queue's back to the door at lunch time are hard work, as is trying to get a table during lunchtime when sitting in, however this does confirm the high quality of the food. That said, on several occasions, when the sandwich maker has got my order wrong (when preparing three sandwiches at the same time), they still try to "recycle" their damaged product (I was recently asked "is it ok if we just scrape the mayonnaise off and
give you the same ciabatta?" No it's not, I specifically asked for no mayo)...
I recently ate in with my partner at lunch time and the experience wasn't particularly
Relaxing. Having ordered beef, at the counter it was diffuicult to have to call her, sat across the shop, to request an alternate meat as the beef had all gone. This call was snarled at by staff (included the grey haired well spoken manager) who weren't pleased that I was disrupted their "cattle market" flow. I ordered coffee and had to take the sandwiches across the shop to my other half before returning to push my way through the queue to reach the counter an retrieve what I think was the latte I ordered. It's also worth noting that (possibly illegally as they don't tell you this until you have no choice to pay it?) if you don't have cash, this place will charge you 50p to use your DEBIT card to pay for your order. Awful. On top of this, it's the only eatery I'm aware of that doesn't have customer toilets.
All in all this place offers great food and coffee, so much so that it's become a Manchester institution but the poor clearly profit above satisfaction-centric attitude of the management makes the experience pretty poor if you visit anywhere anywhere near lunchtime. If you do go, I'd recommend a take away rather than sit in but be prepared to be part of a cattle market when trying to place your order regardless. Also, make sure you visit the toilet before you visit and that you have cash on you to avoid the outrageous debit card charge.
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