Some of Manchester’s best independent bars to sip a cocktail at this weekend

Arcane

Manchester is a place full of independent bars on every corner and we’re lucky to call a city with such a vibrant variety our home.

If it’s a cocktail you’re after sipping in a socially-distanced setting this Bank Holiday weekend, then there’s plenty of local hangouts worth adding to your list.

The popular #EatOutToHelpOut scheme might be drawing to a close on Monday, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to stop supporting our city’s hardworking independent bars at a time when they still continue to need our help more than ever.

The list of places worth mentioning here is endless, but we’ve narrowed down a few of our favourites so, in no particular order, here’s our picks for some of the best independent bars to sip a cocktail at this weekend:

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Dusk Til Pawn

Northern Quarter

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Come on in, warm up and grab a drink. Here till 3am xo

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At first glance, Dusk Til Pawn might not be quite what you think it is, but hidden behind a pawn shop storefront in the heart of the Northern Quarter, this “prohibition-chic lounge” is serving up some of the best craft cocktails, wine and beer that the city has to offer.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Dusk Til Pawn website here.

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Science & Industry

Northern Quarter

Sitting on the first floor of popular Northern Quarter hangout Cane and Grain, Science & Industry is Manchester’s most “experimental” cocktail bar.

The focus of this eccentric hideaway is to provide customers with a new and exciting style drinking, and a dedicated drinks laboratory has been created within the bar for experimentation with flavour and scientific techniques, which allows it to develop unique cocktails.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Science & Industry website here.

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Arcane

South King Street

It may be tucked away underground on South King Street – just off Deansgate’s main thoroughfare – but with an extensive menu of drinks and cocktails prepared by some of the city’s most-knowledgeable artisans, Arcane really isn’t one to be missed.

This is one of Manchester’s most eclectic, bold and inspired bars on the scene.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Arcane website here.

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Speak In Code

Jackson’s Row

Speak In Code is an award-winning bar in the heart of the city centre that prides itself on focusing on quality, service and an imaginative offering of cocktails.

There also looks to have been quite a few new additions to the ever-expanding cocktail menu over this past month too – from martinis and negronis, to mojitos and gins – so there’s sure to be something for every taste if you’re heading down there over Bank Holiday weekend.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Speak In Code website here.

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Behind Closed Doors

Northern Quarter

Behind Closed Doors is the home of “sex, rugs and funk ‘n’ soul”.

A good time is pretty much guaranteed at this self-proclaimed “debauched cocktail bar” in the heart of the Northern Quarter, playing boogie, soul and up-beat funk all night long, with an extensive and varied drinks menu that only adds to the fun.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Behind Closed Doors website here.

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Wood & Company

South King Street

Another popular underground South King Street hangout, Wood & Company’s eclectic range of spirits are constantly being updated and added to, making it the perfect place to grab a cocktail in the city centre over this Bank Holiday weekend.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Wood & Company website here.

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Sammy’s

Ancoats

Fancy stepping back in time for a cocktail this weekend?

If that answer to that was yes, then just a bit further out of the city centre in Ancoats is Sammy’s – a completely retro 1970s-themed cocktail bar. Sure, it might be hidden in plain sight with no on-street signage, but once you step inside, it isn’t somewhere you’re going to forget.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Sammy’s Cocktail Bar website here.

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Three Little Words

Great Northern

Three Little Words is more than just gin.

Nestled in the historical arches beneath Manchester Central and sitting next to the Spirit of Manchester Distillery, Three Little Words is staffed by bartenders who “obsess over the perfect ingredients and yearn for a creative concoction”. You can settle in for an hour or an evening to enjoy immaculate drinks, intimate corners and an atmosphere you’ll want to “take home with you”.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Three Little Words website here.

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Alvarium

Northern Quarter

Alvarium is the neighbourhood bar with “Manchester at its roots”.

Not only is this popular Northern Quarter hangout a real gem for cocktail lovers – with an extensive menu of both classic and signature tipples – but it should also be top of your list if you’re a dog-lover too as pups are always welcome here.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Alvarium website here.

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The Whisky Jar

Northern Quarter

The Whiskey Jar is a “whiskey bar with a cocktail focus” and it has undoubtedly become one of the Northern Quarter’s favourite spots.

Currently stocking 350+ whiskies, this old textile mill has been beautifully restored with it’s upstairs bar playing host to a range of popular nights over the years, and the fully-functioning basement event space also complete with bar, seating and a fantastic sound system with DJ equipment.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via The Whiskey Jar website here.

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One Eight Six

Deansgate

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The ‘ Smokey Old Fashioned’ done properly…🥃

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One Eight Six is one of Manchester’s most exciting cocktail clubs, music venues and barbershops hidden away on the main stretch of Deansgate. Whether it’s a traditional cocktail you’re after, or something a little more unique, you’ll find it all on the menu here.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the One Eight Six website here.

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Cottonopolis

Northern Quarter

Cottonopolis really knows what it’s doing when it comes to cocktails.

If the selection of drinks on offer wasn’t already as extensive enough as it is, there’s now a brand new summer cocktail menu just launched and it couldn’t be more perfect to try out this Bank Holiday weekend.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Cottonopolis website here.

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Convenience Store

Northern Quarter

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Easy #CONstore

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Welcome to your “friendly neighbourhood convenience store”.

Convenience Store is another Northern Quarter gem where everything isn’t initially as it seems. Although it may not look like it, but masked inside this typical corner shop exterior is one of the city’s most original cocktail bars.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Convenience Store website here.

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Wolf At The Door

Northern Quarter

Wolf At The Door is often top of the list for tacos in the city centre, but don’t discount its cocktail menu either, which features a selection of the classics and a couple of originals too.

There’s something for everyone.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Wolf At The Door website here.

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Affleck and Brown

Northern Quarter

Affleck and Brown really is one for cocktail lovers.

With an extensive menu boasting an array of signature cocktails, a collection of the classics, and even a full selection of different Espresso Martini variations too, you just can’t go wrong.

You can find drinks menus, booking details, opening times and more information via the Affleck and Brown website here.

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The COVID-19 pandemic may have taken its toll on industries of all shapes and sizes over these past few months, but supporting local/independent business has never been more important than it is right now.

Do your bit – support local.

The Manc is #BuzzingToBeBack – find out more about eats in Manchester here.

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