With the arrival of spring comes the first promises of sunshine and, being British, of course we’re already thinking about where to go for that first sun-soaked pint.
At last, after several years spent drinking in makeshift beer gardens set up in the streets, life feels like it’s going back to normal – and with the sun finally starting to stick its head out, we expect we’ll be seeing plenty of packed beer gardens soon enough.
We all know the pain of walking pub-to-pub trying to find a seat on a sunny and/or warm Manchester day, so we’re rounding up the best, the biggest and the most hidden beer gardens in the city to help you to make the most of the good weather.
You might actually stand a chance at getting a seat in one of these, if you’re quick enough.
Thomas Street and Edge Street
This was one of the few positives to come out of the pandemic – removing vehicles from a back-to-back stretch of the Northern Quarter.
It means that the bars along Thomas Street and Edge Street can now fill the roads with tables and chairs in one giant beer garden, but being such a busy stretch it’s often the first place punters think to go for a drink in the sun.
You’ll find the likes of Fierce Taproom, Common, Ad Hoc, Terrace, Smithfield Social, the Bay Horse Tavern, Cane and Grain and Wolf At The Door all being given the al fresco treatment.
Terrace also has a gorgeous little hidden beer garden upstairs, and if you find yourself really struggling to find a perch head over to Trof which has a tiny little hidden beer garden on its middle floor.
Two beer garden institutions both stand in the canal-side setting of Castlefield.
Both The Wharf and Dukes 92 are stuffed to the brim with pub-goers in spring and summer, thanks to their massive terraces, with more people spilling out onto the green lawns surrounding them.
Down here you’ll also find Bar Barca and Albert’s Shed, both in prime position for soaking up some rays with a broad array of seating on offer.
It’s one of the prettiest spots in the city centre too, right on the water with narrow boats and plenty of lush greenery in view.
The Oast House
Beer gardens seem to be everywhere in Manchester these days, which is of course a good thing, but we still have a soft spot for the original outdoor watering hole.
Cast your mind back a few years and The Oast House was one of the only venues that really focused on an open-air offering.
It’s still the same today – masses of tables in the heart of Spinningfields, with bleacher seating all the way round, plus live entertainment and a belting Aperol Spritz.
Hatch’s little village of shipping containers, each one home to an independent business (from food to retail), is a true all-weather venue.
Part of it is sheltered by the Mancunian Way that soars overhead, other parts are heated by patio heaters, and parts are left in optimum position for soaking up some sunshine.
The rooftop terrace that overlooks the whole space is our personal favourite.
This ‘secret garden’ bar opened right in the heart of the Northern Quarter in the midst of the pandemic and is another great outdoor space for getting the drinks in when the sun is shining.
Tucked behind those big mint-green wooden boards on Dale Street is a cluster of picnic tables and wooden huts festooned with fairy lights and plants.
It might not be the tropics, but they’ve got the cocktails to trick your tastebuds into thinking it is – we’re talking frozen strawberry daiquiris and frozen pina coladas. Oh, and there’s beer too.
The Corn Exchange
Another corner of the city where bars and restaurants spill outside alongside one another is the Corn Exchange.
Its residents – including Salvi’s, Banyan and Cosy Club – almost all have their own terraces, but it’s the ones on the Exchange Square side who get the most sunshine.
Neighbouring it, meanwhile, are two of Manchester’s oldest pubs – Sinclari’s Oyster Bar and The Old Wellington – both of which also boast large sun trap beer gardens, for those after something a little more traditional.
You might have to queue a little while, but with so much seating, you’ll be sipping a drink in the sun before you know it.
Cutting Room Square
Set in the middle of Ancoats, also known as one of the coolest neighbourhoods in the world, Cutting Room Square is guaranteed to get the sun all day long – and with plenty of bars here to choose from you’re pretty much guaranteed to find a seat one way or another.
From Vietnamese restaurant and bar Nam, which serves delicate fruity cocktails alongside a range of beers, to classic pub reborn Edinburgh Castle and brilliant cocktail bar Jane Eyre, drinkers are spoilt for choice.
Add to that rock bar Jimmy’s, wine pros Blossom Street Social, and local brewery bar Seven Brothers, and you’ll soon see how easy it is to spend a whole day drinking down here.
Featured image – Terrace
New Wave Ramen’s new takeover series is spotlighting the best noods in the game
Manc favourite New Wave Ramen recently launched a brand-new takeover series spotlighting other knowledgeable noodle heads and soup specialists from around the UK, and it’s going down an absolute storm.
The ramen game in Manchester continues to grow year after year and we’re lucky enough to have a plethora of broth-brewing pros right on our doorstep, with New Wave being one of the most popular anywhere in the city.
Making a name for themselves over in Mackie Mayor before building on that success to open up their first brick-and-mortar site over on Tib Lane last year, they’ve become a cornerstone of the cuisine and overall Japanese scene here in 0161, so it’s no wonder other contemporaries have noticed.
After catching eyes all over the country, New Wave held their first collaboration of 2024 earlier this month, inviting Cardiff’s highly-celebrated Matsudai Ramen ’round for the first of many kitchen takeovers and, suffice to say, the gaff was completely packed out. But that was just the start…
The two have teamed up before but it’s still a huge deal to have the two ramen masters teaming up for the new Tib Lane takeover, with New Wave set to welcome their fellow brothy brethren on 17 March and given the success of the previous event, we expect spaces to full up just as quick.
Here’s what you can expect to be slurping if you sign up for the next iteration of the takeover series: all the good stuff and plenty of it.
They say ‘too many cooks spoil the broth’ — utter nonsense in this case, sorry.
We will happily sit back and watch some of the greatest ramen restaurants in Britain collide to bring their expertise together in wonderful little bowls of flavourful umami bombs and drink up every last drop until we burst, thank you very much.
The New Wave x Kanada-Ya crossover night takes place from 12-10pm on Sunday, 17 March and those interested are urged to book HERE if they want to make sure they don’t miss out on a seat.
We’re really excited by this takeover series and, if you’re a fan of noods (not that kind, cheeky), you should be too; plus if you’re looking for the very best ramen in Manchester, you can check out our list of the top 10 in full down below:
Featured Images — New Wave Ramen (via IG)/Supplied
Peaky Blinders Manchester gains official TV show license — and they’re having a big party to celebrate
Peaky Blinders Manchester site has been officially licensed by the much-loved British TV series and they’re throwing a big ol’ party in full 1920s fashionto toast the occasion.
Originally set up as a separate entity from the show back in 2018, the popular bottomless brunch spot, restaurant and bar has become a familiar face on the hospitality and late-night scene, spawning many, but it’s only until now that the flagship Manchester venue has officially partnered with the show.
Just in time to mark the iconic franchise’s 10th anniversary this year, the group agreed on a deal with Peaky Blinders‘ media company Banijay Rights to provide proper licensing to the bar right here in the city centre.
There are multiple spin-offs all over the UK but it’s only the Manchester location that can now claim to be the officially licensed Peaky Blinders bar, so why not have a big bash to celebrate? We’ll cheers a glass of whiskey or two to that.
For anyone who’s never been, situated on Peter Street in the heart of the busy Deansgate strip. Peaky Blinders Manchesteris a real destination venue for any big fan of the show who might also fancy some good food, a cheeky tipple and live entertainment while they’re at it.
All done in a roaring 1920s twist — flappers girls and men dressed like gangsters straight out of the hit show — it’s all about immersing yourself in the spirit of the place and there’s no better way than getting involved with their big anniversary knees-up on Friday, March 1.
Complete with actors who stay in character, as well as an extensive range of Peaky Blinders-themed cocktails like the ‘Monaghan Boy’, ‘Solomon’s Silence’ and ‘Dirty Ada’; plenty of live music and all the glitz and glamour you’d hope for, it’s going to be a ball.
As for scran, the menu includes classic homemade dishes with a Peaky Blinders twist and, for one night only, you can even book on to their two-hour bottomless brunch deal beforehand.
The interiorPeaky Blinders’ bottomless brunch is a local faveCredit: Supplied/The Manc Eats
Speaking on the newly-forged official partnership, Group Director of Licensing and Merchandising for Banijay, David Christopher, said:“We love to offer fans the chance to inhabit the incredible world of Peaky Blinders, and a venue like this, which is enjoyed by so many people, complements our portfolio of immersive entertainment.
Bringing Peaky Blinders Manchesteron board as an official licensee ensures customers can enjoy an experience synonymous with the integrity, quality and character of the series.”
A great way not only to round off the month but kick into March with a drink in hand and a swing in your step, there are still tickets left for the Peaky Blinders 10th anniversary party at their Peter Street venue and you can grab yours HERE and general admission is completely free.