For the last few years, on the August Bank Holiday, some bright sparks have embarked on the Chorlton Beer Mile – a celebration of the fantastic beer haunts along Manchester Road in the suburb.
Not ones to want to miss out on such a clever endeavour, we’ve taken this and expanded it even further, taking in even more excellent Chorlton boozers and bars down Barlow Moor Road and then onto Beech Road.
I’d never be so irresponsible as to say that you should have a drink in every single one of these, I mean, there are (15) venues on this list – but they’re all well worth a visit – and I suppose you can have a bit of food in any of the ample eateries dotted around along the way.
Let’s get this thing started right at the top of Manchester Road and work our way into the very centre of Chorlton…
A bonafide classic student haunt in the city centre, the Chorlton version of The Font is a much more ‘Chorlton’ orientated venue, insofar that you’ll find families and pedigree dogs in here rather than throngs of pissed up first years taking advantage of the £3 cocktails. The drink selection in here is always outstanding – with an excellent range of craft beers, ciders and world bottles always on offer.
The Font, 115-117 Manchester Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9PG
Mary & Archie
I’ve frequented the Mary & Archie in West Didsbury many times, but only been to the one in Chorlton once, and I was very, very drunk indeed. I’m sure it’s more of the same though, with an always excellent selection of craft beers on offer, homemade food, and a great seating area outside – perfect for people watching or just to play Yellow Car whilst sipping your cider.
Mary & Archie, 111 Manchester Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9PG
Some people would say that Henry C is the very best cocktail bar in Manchester – and I’m one of those who would be inclined to agree. A superb neighbourhood haunt, Henry C’s ever-changing drinks menu, bar nibbles and cosy atmosphere are hard to beat – and it’s become a true Chorlton institution over the years.
Henry C, 107 Manchester Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9GA
A relatively new addition to Chorlton, 99 Reasons took over the legendary Pi early this year. The new cafe and bar concept comes from owners Jake McGrath and James Madden and they’re serving “amazing coffee, gin, beer and food.” I’ve not actually had chance to pop in here yet for a pint – I’ll go this weekend and let you know the vibe.
99 Reasons, 99 Manchester Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9GA
The Beer House
Pure Ronseal vibes here. The Beer House. You know exactly what you’re getting with this one – and they certainly don’t disappoint. It’s actually a callback to when this place was called ‘The Marble Beer House’ and owned by Manchester brewery Marble. As you’d expect – the beers on offer are always numerous; the perfect cosy little boozer in which to enjoy them.
The Beer House, 57 Manchester Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9PW
Proof Bar & Kitchen
For a few years I would always get Proof mixed up with pizza joint Proove – but let me assure you now – they’re not the same and nothing alike. Proof has actually been serving delicious food throughout the day to hungry locals since 2007, and more recently they’ve added a nice terrace bit out front – a positive to come from the COVID pandemic. The cocktail menu is massive too.
Proof Bar & Kitchen, 30 Manchester Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9PH
Every time I’ve been in the Beagle it’s been proper busy. Like, packed. Which is good because they deserve to be busy. They do everything exceptionally well, from their beer selection and cocktails, to the food – provided with a smile by pizza experts – Nell’s. It’s especially rowdy on the weekends – and is the perfect place for a proper sesh in Chorlton.
The Beagle, 456-458 Barlow Moor Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 0BQ
An absolutely massive pub on the crossroads, one that’s probably stood here for a couple of hundred years – when blokes on horseback would come looking for an ale, a bath and a wench to cuddle up to. This is a quintessential traditional boozer, with cold pints, loads of screens showing the footy, gamblers, pig snacks – plus (and probably the best) – there’s lots of live music in here.
Royal Oak, 440 Barlow Moor Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 0BQ
Right, it’s here where you can deviate from Manchester Road if you like – because there are some excellent establishments on Wilbraham Road, including Dulcimer, Electrik, Brewski, Chorlton Tap and further down – The Creameries.
Or you can leave them for another day and continue down Barlow Moor Road…
Man Bites Frog
A strange name for one of Chorlton’s best bars and eateries, Man Bites Frog started life as a bit of a French-themed place – but I think they’ve toned that down over the years. It’s a great boozer, made all the better with the copious amount of tat dotted all over the place, plus – there’s an excellent beer garden out back for when it’s sunny.
Man Bites Frog, 378 Barlow Moor Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 8AZ
The Spoon Inn
A venue that started off as a conversation between three Chorlton mates, escalated into The Spoon Inn – which itself started as just a cafe and has now added booze and food into the mix. It’s a great little bar to sit down and have some bevvies – and there’s always some form of entertainment on, from live music, jam nights and even a regular stand-up comedy offering.
The Spoon Inn, 364 Barlow Moor Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 8AZ
Frequently languishing at the top of TripAdvisor for the whole of Manchester, The Laundrette must be doing something right with the sheer number of people who absolutely love this place. I must admit that their cocktails are actually very, very good – and not just designed to be plonked on Instagram every ten minutes. They also have a huge Bloody Mary menu here too – with exotic takes on the classics. Mexican Mary with tequila and fresh avocado anyone?
The Laundrette, 32 Beech Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9EL
The Lead Station
This former police station was transformed into a bar all the way back in 1995, and has since become a true Chorlton institution. A bar, a restaurant and a cafe – they offer everything here, from an extensive cocktail menu to regularly changing menus of British classics. The roasts in here are absolutely brilliant too – so if you’re in here on a Sunday – expect to see lots of beef and gravy going past.
The Lead Station, 99 Beech Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9EQ
Bar San Juan
Here we are. If you only ever go to one place in Chorlton for the rest of your life – make is San Juan. The tapas restaurant on the lips of pretty much everyone in Manchester, San Juan is notoriously tiny, and hard to get into but once you’re in – it’s outstanding small plates and gallons of sangria galore.
Bar San Juan, 56 Beech Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9EG
The Chorlton Green
A wine bar, eatery & live music venue that opens every Thursday – Sunday. This place really excels when it comes to their live music and events offerings, plus – a massive wine list and cocktail menu. Can’t go wrong really.
The Chorlton Green, 137a Beech Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9FQ
Horse & Jockey
Here it is – your final stop on the Chorlton Beer Mile – the Horse & Jockey. Of course there’s also the Beech Inn next door if you want to add even more boozers on to this list – but I thought you’d probably be a little bit tipsy by now and looking to get to the end. There’s no better way to finish this ‘mile’ off than in this excellent pub. It’s a Joey Holt so sink a pint of Diamond before ordering your Uber home.
Horse & Jockey, Chorlton Grn, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9HS