We don’t need any excuses for a cocktail at the I Love MCR offices, but if you do they don’t come much bigger or better than the fact today, May 13th, is World Cocktail Day.
Cocktails have been enjoying something of a renaissance thanks to the influence of expert mixologists like Susie Wong, social media, and events like Cocktails in the City. It doesn’t seem that long ago that they seemed impossibly sophisticated and exotic and just about the only place you could get one on a night out in town was a hotel bar. But the proliferation of high street bars – and, more recently, specialist cocktail bars – means that you’re never more than a few feet away from a mojito in Manchester city centre. So what better way to celebrate World Cocktail Day than by enjoying your favourite cocktail at one of the fine establishments listed below. Go on. You know you want to.
And if you want to continue the celebrations for a couple more days, don’t forget that Manchester’s finest bars come together for a festival of cocktails in the new urban chic surroundings of the Great Northern Warehouse for Cocktails In The City, tomorrow and Friday. Tickets are £10 and include one cocktail, main stage demonstrations and cocktail booklet. For more information contact 077950 11183.
By the way, here’s another date for your diary. Saturday 13 June is World Gin Day. Any excuse for a celebration.
Épernay boasts a beautiful balcony overlooking the Great Northern Square where you can enjoy a drinks menu featuring sixteen world class champagnes, a vast array of international wines and a wonderful cocktail menu with over forty different cocktails to choose from. With award winning, enthused sommelier Marc Farrell on site, you get a sense of class and knowledge behind each glass.
Try: The Kid
Unit 1a, Great Northern Tower, Watson St, Manchester M3 4E
The Liquor Store
Tucked away in a basement just off Deansgate, this hidden gem (not so secret anymore) is well worth discovering. Venture away from the beaten track of Deansgate bars towards Salford and you’ll find a cool, unpretentious crowd enjoying great Manchester music, fantastic cocktails and a wicked atmosphere. Their ever evolving bar is manned by the award winning and flamboyant bartender Danny Bigg-Wither. Wooo!
Try: Manchester Mule
40 Blackfriars Street, Manchester, M3 2EG
Mr Cooper’s House & Garden Bar
Set in the iconic Midland Hotel and describing itself as a ‘proper, grown up bar‘, Simon Rogan’s second venture within this legendary hotel combines history and heritage with a modern twist. Simon’s love of unusual ingredients and combinations have inspired an exciting cocktail menu.
Try: Northside Garden Fizz
Midland Hotel, Peter Street, Manchester M60 2DS
Operated by internationally renowned bar consultants, Escapade Bar Services, this Deansgate treasure is one of the most innovative and original cocktail bars in Manchester. Escapade is not only responsible for creating menus for bars all over the UK and beyond but also for training staff. Needless to say, they know their stuff. With the growing popularity of Elixir Tonics and Treats, which opened November 2013, Escapade might want to keep a few secrets up their sleeve exclusively for Elixir.
Try: Lovelace Martini
123 Deansgate, Manchester M3 2BY
San Carlo Fumo
This brand new San Carlo addition serves some of the finest cocktails around thanks to Jamie Jones, one of Manchester’s foremost cocktail connoisseurs. They taste even better when matched with the delicious, fresh, Italian menu.
Try: Lavender Martini
1 St Peters Square Oxford Road, Manchester M1 5AN
Cane And Grain
With three floors each offering an entirely different experience, you could have a cocktail on each floor and feel like you’ve been in three separate venues, without having to leavethe building.
Try: Homemade Amaretto Sour
49-51 Thomas Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4 1N
Now twice the size as it was, The Alchemist in Spinningfields is one of Manchester’s greats. An instant hit, with a year round outdoor terrace it’s setting the benchmark for cocktails in Spinningfields and beyond. You can also find its sister bar on New York Street.
Try: Mad Hatter’s Tea Party
3 Hardman Street, Manchester, M3 3HF
Dusk Til Pawn
A real hidden gem! From outside, the bar looks like a quirky little pawn shop, but once you step inside you’re in one of the Northern Quarter’s best kept secrets. With its speakeasy vibe, Dusk Til Pawn is the perfect place to enjoy a drink, or several, and has an ever changing menu so there’s always something new to try.
Try: Million Dollar Cocktail
Stevenson Square, Northern Quarter, Manchester M1 1FB
Situated on Stevenson Square in the Northern Quarter, Rosylee has a Parisian feel and friendly service. With its cocktail menu featuring ‘Fabulous Fizz’s’ and ‘Classic Concoctions’ you’re sure to find something to please you.
Try: Manchester Bramble
11 Stevenson Square, Manchester , M1 1DB
Despite being known primarily as a restaurant, Rosso has a winning cocktail bar thanks to bar manager Sasha. And their Pornstar Martini is memerable.
Try: Pornstar Martini (ask for a red one!)
43 Spring Gardens, Manchester M2 2BG