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Tried to get in on 28th October 2011. I am a regular at the ..
Had lunch with some work collegues on a Friday and we were all ..
Ye Olde Cock Inn
Absolutely amazing place! Staff so friendly and helpful. My ..
this place is a dump! staff very rude and full of wanabe gangsters! ..
Matt and Phreds Jazz Club
Great place, a welcomed change from the over stylized hair cuts ..
17 reviews written in the last 30 days.
You searched for: Bars - Modern
31 Withy Grove
Lounge 31 is a new late night bar within the Printworks featuring seven days of entertainment, and opening hours till 7am on weekends. The venue opened in October 2007, and has been pretty busy thanks to it's swanky interior and late night opening - a godsend in Manchester which, despite it's '24hour Party People' tag, tends to close down after 2am! Lounge 31 has a mixed music policy, concerntrating on the softer side of urban and R&B, but as a self described 'style bar' - with luminaries such as The Living Room, Sugar Lounge and of course Cloud 23 as it's rivals - the venue was going to have to pull out all the stops to succeed. Inside you'll find a stunning venue that's certainly up there with the best of them in Manchester, in fact a large proportion of their staff have been 'borrowed' from these venues so you may recognise some faces. Private booths are available for hire, each with their own LCD TV, and a VIP area that's seperate from the rest of the bar by curtains.
Arch 12, Deansgate Locks
Another change of tenant on the seemingly fickle Deansgate Locks scene, Sugar Buddha arrives to take over from the Sugar Lounge, so they could save a bit on the signage if they’re smart. Slotting into the notorious strip of bars has traditionally gone one of two ways – go wuith the flow (i.e. standard exposed brickwork, long bar, ‘modern pub grub’, funky house on Saturday nights) or try and stand out from the crowd. We’ve yet to get down there to see which way Sugar Buddha have gone but we will soon...watch this space.
As one of the first bars in the second phase of the Northern Quarter revival, Bluu is one of the busiest venues on the block with big-ass queues outside on a Friday and Saturday. Inside the venue consists of two floors - the welcoming upstairs bar, with plenty of seating and bar space, and the lower floor which is a bit more intimate - some might say sleazy. Although many argue that Bluu's popularity is waning, the selective door policy keeps this place a well behaved haven and you can't beat the restaurant during quieter times. Actually owned by the same people as Fat Cat's Cafe Bar on Deansgate Locks, Bluu still remains highly individual and is a great place to hangout - although it's mighty tempting to head over to the excellent Socio Rehab or Odd Bar (across the road)
Baa Bar Deansgate Locks
Baa Bar has been around since the conception of Deansgate Locks (a strip of bars and clubs built into railway arches and sat alongside a canal) and its still one of the busiest venues on that block despite the size. Combining cheap drinks and shooters will always mean a messy affair, but after a recent refit they're removed the giant mirror balls and side mirrors so ultimately reducing the chances of vomiting. Their speciality is definitely shooters, of which there are far too many varieties to mention. They're lethal but a lot of fun and ultra cheap. On weekends the bar can get far too busy, resulting in long waits at the bar and very little room to move. Good thing that there are more bars and clubs nearby as you can wander down the Locks and grab a drink somewhere else.
Hardman Square, Spinningfields
A new project from Black House, the people behind a number of restaurants and bars throughout the country, known in Manchester for their Grill on the Alley restaurant. Alchemy will apparently be “an old English pub done in a US-style bar feel”. It’s a while off yet – the company haven’t officially acquired the space yet, but we hope to see it later in 2010.
The large, impressive building on Spring Gardens that currently houses Athenaeum is due to be taken over by Browns in late 2010. The magnificent space has long been thought to be undermined by the cheap and not so cheerful feel of Athenaeum, so the news that Browns are to arrive is very welcome. For the uninitiated, Browns is a chain, but a slightly upmarket one with select venues throughout the UK serving a large choice of food and drinks, with a steering towards mid-priced quality rather than cheap and cheerful. A huge range of cocktails, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, as well as an extensive wine list and champagne selection accompanies a full menu at their other venues so we are assuming Browns in Manchester will follow a similar format. If it all goes ahead this should be a good addition to what is developing into a little clutch of decent places to eat and drink – Rosso, Room, All Bar One.
7-9 New Wakefield Street
***Updated July 2010*** We spent a Friday night in Font recently and can thoroughly recommend it for a decent place to warm up for a night out. They’ve got a huge range of drinks – from real ales to a choice of gin to plenty of lager, and it’s all reasonably priced. The place has the air of an organised but friendly independent bar, which is kind of what it is (it’s one of a small chain of three – two in Manchester, on in Liverpool), with decent food and very accommodating staff – we asked if we could reserve a small area for 7pm on Friday night and were able to do so no problem. The top end of Oxford Road is becoming increasingly popular and prosperous as a drinking destination (Jilly’s/Music Box notwithstanding), and Font is definitely one of the venues of choice for us. _________________________________________________________ The Font has been around for ages now, and its combination of drinks offers, playstations and table football has worked well for them. They're also one of the few venues that lets you hire the place out for free. Each weekend the DJs will play anything from hip hop to house music, and its location - tucked away down Wakefield Street (just off Oxford Road) - means that it's visited by those who are heading to the Music Box (Jillys/Electric Chair) or the Attic (Kindergarten et al). The Font is equally good for food, as it's cheap and quick. The fry ups are particularly good (£3) or the burgers for a mere £3.80.
TriBeCa and BED
50 Sackville Street
Situated on the edge of the Gay Village, Tribeca is a New York themed cocktail bar that has proven to be a huge hit with both gay and straight revellers. Named after an area of Manhattan (Tribeca stands for TRIangle Below Canal) the bar is decorated in leather and wood, with a double vaulted ceiling in the main bar area. At the back is a raised seating area that can be hired out for private parties and above the main entranceway is the Purple Lounge, which is a 25 capacity area that can be reserved as well. The drinks prices can be a little on the expensive side, but you can grab a good-sized cocktail pitcher for ?12. BED is located downstairs, and unsurprisingly it has very few seats and lots of comfy beds to lounge around on. Despite a positive launch it hasn't captured the imagination of the Manchester public despite being a decent enough 150 capacity bar. The d?cor is well executed and its well worth a visit, although if it's busy it can be annoying waiting for a bed to become clear - or just jump on a bed with some strangers!
A new grastropub for Manchester's Northern Quarter, with a focus on food rather than drink. Formerly The King, a pub that was a far cry from what The Northern stands for, the venue has undergone a complete refit.
Barbirolli Square, Lower Mosley Street
***Updated again, February 2010*** Barbirolli held a little low key open evening the other week, to which we were fortunate enough to be invited. On a Friday night at 6pm, it gave us a good idea of what the place is like. First impressions were of surprise – it was packed. Not with invited guests (there was a little area reserved for that) but with smart revellers. Not bad for a bar in its infancy. The decor is clean and modern but with a comfortable feel, the cocktails are ‘bloody lovely’ (according to those accompanying me for the evening), the beer cold and served in proper glasses and the live music unobtrusive but entertaining – just what you need at that time of night, post work on a Friday. Their aim of providing a sophisticated live music venue appears to have been realised and we look forward to going back there again soon to see the place in full ‘gig-mode’. If the preview was anything to go by, it’ll soon be something of a destination in an area that traditionally didn’t offer much in the way of nightlife. ***Updated February 2010*** We’ve finally received some more info from the people behind Barbirolli – it’s pitching itself as a sort of upmarket Matt and Phreds. That seems to be the idea anyway - “stylish, sophisticated and upmarket live music venue,” is how they put it. Positioned well for such an aim, right next to Bridgewater Hall and GMEX (sorry, Manchester Central), it’s an area of town that is more likely to attract the ‘stylish and sophisticated’ crowd than, say, the Northern Quarter, or even Deansgate, which seems to be turning into the new Peter Street. With two bars, a stage for live music (think jazz, blues and acoustic sessions) as well as cocktails and both bar meals and a la carte dining, Barbirolli looks to be carving itself a new niche in Manchester’s nightlife. _________________________________________________________ This bar has been rumoured for a while and Barbirolli, on Barbirolli Square, opened just in time for New Year’s Eve 2009/2010. Handy for the Bridgewater Hall and Manchester Central, it’s set itself up as a classy, up market joint. We’ve yet to have the pleasure and only have the attached ‘artists impressions;’ to go on so far, but we’ll be sure to get down to Barbirolli soon to check it out.
Great Northern Warehouse
Relish is located in the Great Northern Warehouse, on that site that was formerly Persia. The bar comprises a 120 cover restaurant, 350 capacity bar and a VIP mezzanine for the bling bling. Over ?3million has been spent on this place, but only 10p of that was spent on the website. We jest, this is a nice enough place to hang out and it gets a bit hip and trendy on Friday and Saturday nights, with some well selected local DJs. Two years ago I wouldn't have walked down Peter Street if you had paid me, but with the recently opened Manchester 235, the new Radisson and the nearby Beetham Tower (Skybar, Podium bar et al) this is turning into a decent area of town.
33 Peter Street
***Updated July 2009*** Bedlam is now Elcetric Boogaloo. ________________________________________________________ Bedlam takes over one of our favourite spaces on Peter Street and gives it a much needed revamp. Halfway between Teasers and M2, the glass fronted bar is now playing host to some of the best local house talent (albeit house of a funkier nature) and it's succeeding where past incumbents couldn't.
Label was the cooler younger brother of the Living Room - in fact it's situated right next door (the two are actually owned by different people, but appear somewhat similar). Whereas the Living Room caters for those who prefer a sophisticated drink, Label is much more in your face with a dance floor and the necessary DJs to go with it. Designed in a sensitive fashion it's an uber chic hangout that's aimed at the 'up for it' crowd: pumpin house music, groovy disco - it all goes on down here. Label's location at the base of Deansgate, close to Prohibition, The Cocoa Rooms and Club V, has set this area alight. It's the trendy place to come out and party, and a few more steps in either direction will take you to the Circle Club (lovely), Panacea (good, but troublesome) and a whole load of traditional pubs.
Arches 3a - 5, Deansgate Locks
Loaf is very much like one of the Hollyoaks starlets that pass through its doors on a Friday or Saturday night ? overrated and easily forgettable. Going back seven years, Manchester was still in the grip of post-bomb construction, with a lot of fantastic plans but nothing to show for it yet. Some bright spark had the idea of turning a number of disused railway arches at the bottom of Deansgate into a series of bars (plus a bathroom and flower shop that, quite rightly, died). Little did they know exactly how much Deansgate Locks would affect Manchester nightlife, both in a positive and negative fashion, and the expansive Loaf was built at the far left of the strip. Occupying huge arches, this venue was initially loved the uber-glam Cheshire brigade (its proximity to Deansgate station, and their inability to walk for more than five minutes really helped this Loaf) but that was back in 2000 and that's a lifetime ago in the life of a bar. The venue itself isn't all that bad ? upstairs houses a bar area that holds approximately three hundred, and a restaurant that can seat a touch over one hundred. Downstairs is a bar-cum-vip area that is normally rather busy, and a ?proper? club space (as well as the toilets and cloakroom). The decor was pretty fresh for Manchester until everyone else copied it, but its still more than passable in terms of looks, for the time being at least. Over the years the crowd has changed, and now it's a bit more ?down to earth? (a.k.a. rougher) at weekends at least. Its saving grace is the events it puts on during the week ? the infamous Hideous Kinky has moved here on Thursdays and Eye Candy was the place to be on a Monday, giving this venue a new lease of life ? the crowds on these nights are much more like they used to be. Overall you may feel we're being a bit harsh on Loaf, after all this was initially built as a test project by one of the big breweries, but its hard watching a venue like this go downhill at weekends. A rebranding is definitely needed soon, and no doubt they will polish this huge bar/club/restaurant into something special, but for the time being I can't honestly say that this place is somewhere I want to visit for that long.
***May 2009*** Taking the ground floor spot in The great Northern Tower, below champagne specialist and newcomer Epernay on the first floor, Taps brings an altogether different offering to the party. Far from the magnums and flutes upstairs, each table in Taps gets...believe it or not...its own tap. Yes, of beer. Sit down, get some glasses and fill them, and yourselves, up as much as you wish. No more visits to the bar, no queuing, no endless fiddling with change. Just turn up, drink as much as you wish and pay on your way out. Brilliant. Taps is now open.
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