With beer on tap, the kitchen behind the bar, and a staircase to the immediate right, it's stuffed a lot in to a small space, but it works. While students pretend not to care about the decor, the cafe-cum-bar is a solid mix of woody hues and woody textures; wooden floors, a mahogany bar, oak tables and chairs, and a blackboard lines the wall adjacent to the bar. Fallow is decidedly 'bar in the Alps', and at the same time, a modern European bar, with a speakeasy vibe.
Fallow isn't merely a cafe, it is a venue for a number of events which mostly include themed music nights from Ska to Reggae, as well as live DJ sets.
Music and decor aside, the food is fantastic; all of the meals on the breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus are superb, and have an artisan quality. You'd be forgiven for thinking this place is a bit poor in terms of food quality because it's only a small venue, and doesn't look like it would serve high quality food, but be prepared for some incredibly seasoned vegetarian, vegan, and meaty dishes.
Their Sunday roasts are famous, and nearly every customer who walked in on the Sunday I visited (a nut rooibos and oat cookie on table before me), ordered either a lamb or roast beef meal, complete with roast potato and all the trimmings.
While the Sunday dinners are great, the lunch meals are exceptional. I'd even go as far as saying Fallow serves the best lunch time meals in Fallowfield. The onion rings are especially good, if you're just a little peckish, and they're great as a snack to share with a friend.
Burger and onion rings
It is possibly my new favourite place to while away the hours of a weekend in Fallowfield. Sadly, I'm no longer a student, but that doesn't mean I don't get to enjoy the cheap-ish price of a meal, drink, and the easy breezy atmosphere any day of the week. I work 9am - 5pm Monday to Friday, but the cafe-bar is open from 9am until 2.30am, seven days a week, so I tend to fall in there after work, when I'm working up North. Surprisingly the cafe is busiest on Thursdays, as opposed to the weekends because the students generally go home for the weekend. If you do visit on the weekend however, it's not empty, but a bit more quiet than it is during the week.
Fallow has a very informal atmosphere, and although I was new to the cafe when I first visited, the members of staff were relaxed, and addressed me like they would a friend. Although they were professional, they were also extremely 'cool', and informed me there were free refills to my teapot of loose leaf rooibos.
Fallow was undoubtedly created with the surrounding students in mind, and born out of a desire for something a bit more refined than the somewhat scruffy pubs and bars which litter the casual area of Fallowfield. Comfort and style aside the food is great, but they also have free Wifi, for which the password is Tom Sawyer. If you're into English literature or enjoy reading you'll chuckle, like I did, at this Wifi password.
I spent three hours in Fallow and couldn't help but enjoy an oat cookie with my cuppa, as I penned a few articles, caught up on emails, and let myself be enveloped by the ever-so cool cafe/bar.. It was an incredibly relaxing afternoon, and while I was catching up on work on that drizzly Sunday, it felt like I was in my own domain, inhaling the scent of home-cooking, and watching the world go by.