As prices for a pint or a slice of pizza have started to sky rocket in the city centre of late, there are still places that you might have missed where you can enjoy a beer for absolutely tuppence. There’s places you can go to enjoy great music that have been upstaged in the past few years. This list will hopefully jog your memory and convince you to start becoming the regular you perhaps used to be.
I fell in love with Slice upon realisation you can buy a Peroni Rosso and a Baci (sort of an Italian version of a Fortune Cookie, but with chocolate and nuts instead). The pizza is divine and the spot itself has rustic looking Italian interior that will make you think you’re in Napoli.
Slice, 1a Stevenson Square, Manchester M1 1DN
0161 236 9032
Tucked away down the alley between Cross Street and St Ann’s Square, Sandinista may not be at the top of your list for food and drinks but it should be – their selection of tapas dishes and wide range of craft beers on tap are a winner. This place has been here for years and for a good reason – the atmosphere is always great and the smells and flavours coming from the Spanish/Latino inspired kitchen will undoubtedly tempt you to eat while you drink.
Sandinista, 2 Old Bank St, City Centre, Manchester M2 7PF
0161 832 9955
Sinclair’s Oyster Bar
Certainly not a secret and absolutely not hidden from view, but it seems to me that locals have neglected the fact that a cheap and cheerful Taddy Lager is only £2.20. Slap bang in the city centre too, can you get much better than that? I don’t think it should be ignored, and also let’s not question why prices haven’t risen in the past few years and just keep on enjoying the fine selection of ales until the end of time.
Sinclair’s Oyster Bar, 2 Cathedral Approach, Manchester M3 1SW
0161 834 0430
The Old Pint Pot
Tucked away on the River Irwell in Salford, this little gem can be whatever you want it to be. Whether it’s a gig upstairs, a game of pool, fantastic offers on pub grub throughout the week or just a nice Sunday pint when the sun decides to show up, the Pint Pot is about as overlooked as it gets. Even better, a membership card gets you 25% off food and discounted drinks all week long. All with a very picturesque setting beside you in the beer garden and a very decent playlist over the speakers. Basically, why are you still sitting here reading this?
The Old Pint Pot, 2 Adelphi St, City Centre, Salford M3 6EN
0161 839 7958
Corbieres Wine Cavern
As much as Manchester does a fantastic roof bar, it also has its amazing array of underground ones too. Take for example this little gem just off Deansgate – a dark hideaway with a great local Salfordian ale menu and of course, wine. It’s also equipped with a jukebox and pinball machine for that added kitsch value. The bar has been going strong for over 30 years and you can bet your bottom dollar it’ll still be as enjoyable an atmosphere as it was when it opened.
Corbieres, 2 Half Moon Street, Deansgate, Manchester, M2 7PS
0161 834 3381
Soup Kitchen (basement)
Sticking with underground themes, Soup Kitchen is guaranteed one of the best places to go for an underground rave. Zutekh DJs showcase some of the best DJ’s going and its techno dungeon vibes surely add to the experience. The roofs falling off, there’s only two toilets between you, a tiny little bar and an even tinier DJ booth, but you’ll have one hell of a time.
Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear St, Manchester M1 1DF
0161 236 5100
Where you can enjoy nice ambient music and an open mic night on Tuesdays with an extensive Whiskey menu on the top half of Whiskey Jar, let it be known you can also enjoy a mad dirty rave below the main bar. They’re few and far between, but when there are events on, you’ll know about it (the stairs down to where the music’s playing will be pulsating). The juxtaposition between both halves of Whiskey Jar is exciting enough.
The Whiskey Jar, 14 Tariff St, Manchester M1 2FF
Le Delicatezze di Bruno
Hidden on the outskirts of the Etihad Stadium, this fantastic authentic Italian restaurant offers tapas for £2.50 each, all the pasta you can eat and pizzas the size of your entire body. For tapas you can choose from Calamari Fritti, Bruschetta and Arancini through to White Bait and a Caprese Salad. A 12” pizza with a wide range of toppings will set you back an absolutely ridiculous £6.90. You an even try and battle a 19”, which is apparently best for 3 people, but I challenged it with just two of us and it was blissfully hard work. By no surprises, Delicatezze di Bruno gets very busy so it’s always best to book ahead.
Le Delicatezze Di Bruno, 564 Ashton New Rd, Manchester M11 4RP
0161 231 8349
The clue is in the name with this club, situated in M3 Salford at Down Tex Mill, taxi drivers find it difficult to get to. Once you’re there, you won’t want to go home. Hidden always likes to have little surprises for gig goers (see: Denis Sulta surprise set during August Bank Holiday). Its two floors of good music, mismatched furniture and a brilliant courtyard for outdoor festivals in summer make it well worth a visit or six.
Hidden, 16-18 Mary St, Manchester M3 1NH
Peveril of the Peak
One of the oldest pubs in Greater Manchester and arguably one of the smallest, most aesthetically pleasing and fantastically named. Not far from Bridgewater Hall and across from Rain Bar and the canal, this tiny and oddly shaped building still offers a decent priced beer and a homely atmosphere for all patrons.
Peveril Of The Peak, 127 Great Bridgewater St, Manchester M1 5JQ
0161 236 6364
Evuna has to be one of the most overlooked of tapas restaurants. With chains like La Tasca, a great tapas at El Gato Negro and some amazing Spanish restaurants in general across the city, Evuna offers 3 tapas for £10 and house wine at £2.50 a glass. You can’t argue with that. There’s two locations where you can enjoy these offers – Deansgate and Thomas Street, Northern Quarter. The Deansgate establishment boasts a wine shop where you can take home an array of Spanish and other European wines for a very reasonable price.
79 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1LQ
277-279 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4EW
This quaint little bar in Castlefield between the locks and the slightly more upmarket bars needs a mention for its gorgeous little terrace. Great drink selection, even better place for people watching and Beetham Tower admiring (spotting a theme with this article yet?). The decor and cosy atmosphere alone are worth trying out.
The Knott, 374 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4LY
0161 839 9229