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Quirky Manchester hangouts

February 10, 2017

Whether you’re a local Manc or visiting on long weekend break, make the most of Manchester with our shortlist of cool cocktail bars and eclectic establishments. From secluded spots to the most popular drinking parlours, this vibrant city has something to keep you sweet no matter what you’re into.

Pure imagination

Feeling decadent? We dare you to descend into Apotheca, an enchanted emporium that will quench your curiosity.

This Northern Quarter establishment attracts a professional crowd and offers an exciting menu in a setting that oozes style. Mixing antique pharmacy cabinets with a gothic look, this is the place to go for unique homemade cocktails designed to shake and stir your senses.

Tuck into a selection of Northern favourites alongside your choice of unusual tipple and you’ll be set for an evening to remember.

Wheel of fortune

They say don’t judge a book by its cover, and this is why. Dusk til Pawn bears a cunning disguise behind an old pawnshop window and is bursting at the seams with speakeasy charm. This former fortune-teller’s den will fix you up with impressive cocktails made by some of the best mixologists in the city. Practice the jive to the free jukebox and try out this week’s specials as you attempt to put your finger on those secret ingredients.

American pie

Satisfy an unrelenting rumble at Almost Famous Manchester’s popular burger joint; so good they made two of them, so check out the Northern Quarter or head to their newest residency in the Great Northern Warehouse.

This chilled out burger bar doesn’t take reservations, so you’ll need to be patient during peaks times especially on Fridays and Saturdays. An indulgent menu inspired by American icons takes no prisoners, so be prepared to ditch the diet at the door.

Showcasing a different flavour boozy milkshake each week, Almost Famous also hosts a cocktail masterclass where you can learn to mix their signature cocktails for yourself and, of course, sample them afterwards.

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Do you want to know a secret?

One of Salford’s best kept secrets, Under New Management is the definition of cool and covert.

Dash in after dark for a late night drink but leave time to take in the menu of tantalising cocktail titles. Hidden away down an alley in Leftbank, this welcoming establishment is yours to explore.

Listed in FHM’s ‘Top 10 Most Secretive Drinking Dens on the Planet’, this might just be one for the bucket list.

Wipe out

Formerly home to a legendary Northern Quarter skate shop and party hangout, retreat to Cane & Grain for rum, ribs, bourbon and beer next time you’re feeling restless.

The Rib Joint & Tap Room boasts a gnarly interior inspired by the skater’s paradise, the walls plastered with wacky conversation starters. Head upstairs for a more eclectic experience, where taxidermy and leather upholstery give this place the edge.

For those who feel more at home with the sound of the surf, take a pew (or rather, an up-cycled beer barrel) in The Liars Lounge. This bar has a Hawaiian feel with a mix of corrugated iron and bamboo keeping the elements out.

Please note all images in this article are for Illustration purposes only and are not reflective of any establishment mentioned.

Jack O'RiordanView all posts

    Jack is the editor of The Leisure Lounge. Expert in the art of writing things and putting them online. Loves travelling, especially anywhere in southeast Asia. Hates mushrooms.