Cool and Quirky Bars in Manchester
We know your game. You're looking to impress your mates by taking them to Manchester's quirkiest bars, aren't you? That's perfectly understandable - the city sure comes up trumps when it comes to eccentric hangouts. Whether you're looking for a themed bar to jet you off to a more exotic climate or a top-secret basement boozer, this city has all the credentials. We thought it'd be handy to gather our favourite cool and quirky Manchester bars in one place.
Last updated on 12th January 2017
When it comes to a unique night out in Manchester, All Star Lanes are at the peak of entertainment in the city. Not only a haven for bowling and Americana bites, the team behind this spot promise quirky cocktails, plush interiors and a photobooth to boot.
Cabana puts the fun back into Brazilian styled bars with their vibrant interior and playful cocktails. They serve a selection of Brazil-inspired drinks, such as the flavoured Caiprinhas to the blended Batidas. While drinking their tasty array of cocktails, why not sample some of their food: everything from grilled spicy Malagueta Chicken to sweet potato fries, all while sitting in their cool up-scaled interior.
Start stretching out those arms, make sure than lunch is in check and, most importantly, get practicing your victory strike dance because Dog Bowl is a playground for all the big kids who love to sling a bowling ball at some pins and call it a night out. Obviously, there's booze involved, and food if you will, but this Manchester bar is strictly a competitors zone. Bowl on!
Another stunning notch on Manchester's quirky bedpost is Lost In Tokyo. Primed to take you to the very far reaches of Asia, not only can you indulge in stunning cocktails in an urban and unique enviroment, their whisky collection is practically unrivaled.
Blending quirky dive inspired bar with cocktail wonderland, Be At One is a menagerie of neon lights and roaring drinks deals combined. Not only one of the coolest bars in Manchester, Be At One are churning out some of its most unique cocktails, with even the likes of ice cream and Oreo's getting a look in.
This subterranean bar is a hot spot for Manchester's latest revellers and those after a neighbourhood joint to kick back and enjoy a few in. The music policy is loud here, the food comes of the Americana Deep South persuasion and the bar will ply you with liquors of every form, so a good time is basically guaranteed.
For something a little different, head to the American inspired Cane and Grain in Manchester's Northern Quarter. The venue has been created by the experienced Ross Mackenzie and the cocktail expert Lyndon Higginson, and will offer the city's hungry revellers a characterful spot to enjoy delicious ribs, mouth-watering burgers and many other great Southern recipes.
Black Dog NWS makes the list on account of its haphazard, multi-leveled layout, its indoor-outdoor atrium and its incredible roof terrace - easily one of the city's finest summer drinking spots. With a private karaoke booth, selection of pool tables and even its own basement club, Black Dog NWS keeps the surprises coming. If that's not enough, their hot sibling in the Northern Quarter is also worth a peek.
A popular Northern Quarter nook for a bit of chilled out mooching complete with cocktails and delish foods. Kosmonaut mixes up laid back atmospheres with a lower level of ping pong challenges so you can get a slice of the action to spice up your week. These guys play host to film screenings, live music and a buzz over the weekends.
The Refinery is a quirky spot in Spinningfields that's churning out cracking cocktails and incredible food. Spread over one floor, there's a choice between the casual dining room, a swanky restaurant, or laidback bar. Filled with potted plants, hanging lights and eclectic decor, the venue has an industrial vibe.
A cool bar in Manchester situated in the Northern Quarter, Matt and Phred's is a jazz joint famous for its live music, tapas and prohibition style interior. Another neon sign signals the entrance and just gives it a cool look from the outset. Perfect for a chilled night of live music and great drinks with friends, Matt and Phred's is seriously cool.
Situated under the much loved Bluu bar, Smithfield Social is the younger, darker sister set up like a Gentleman's drinking lounge with leather chesterfields, low lights and a seductive atmosphere. For all you whiskey swilling lads and sour supping gals, we may have found you a new haven of underground drinking.
Sitting pretty in the Northern Quarter is Warus, a cocktail lounge, eatery, basement bar and nightclub all at once. Get cosy, marvel at the venue's psychedelic chic interior and survey a vibrant cocktail menu to get things started, before joining an effortlessly cool crowd on the dancefloor.
Quirky because it's so freakin' hard to find, this secret bar in Salford was voted one of the most covert drinking dens on the planet. It's worth seeking out though, once you get there you'll be treated to awesome tunes, dancing on the tables and some of the finest cocktails in Manchester.
This tiny Tiki-themed cocktail bar is fun, buzzing and always worth a visit. With a beach party vibe and sunshine cocktails it is hard not to feel cheery in this quirky fun time bar in the Northern Quarter. Great for chilled out drinks during the week and a frenetic party at weekends, Keko Moku is one of the coolest bijou bars in Manchester.
This pasture of botanical inspired boozing and lounging is quite the beau in Manchester's bar scene. If you fancy a little shrubbery to shake up your cocktail experience, then Allotment Bar is a recipe of countryside charm and floral arrangements waiting to be devoured. Go all green fingers at this joint and nestle under the hanging ivy with a tipple in hand.
Laundry day getting you down? With more than just soap suds and was cycles on offer, this super secret Washhouse is a hideout among Manchester's 'in the know' revelers. Dump your clothes in exchange for a tumble through the dryer where you'll discover a lair of liquors, lusting and who knows what else?
Whisking you away to a blend of warmer clients and snappier drinks is one of the most unique bars in Manchester, Tusk. Not only hailed for their cool tankards of Instagram worth drinks, their interiors are a blend of hipster, Africa and modernity combined.
You don't get much quirkier than Oddest Bar; this places makes a religion out of all that is peculiar, weird, unusual and just plain odd! The multicoloured bar, tented ceiling, array of bizarre artefacts and general air of oddity make it a glorious place to hang out. There is an extensive variety of wares to sip and nibble upon for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Whether you're after a hefty hangover brunch, a light wrap or a big ol' burger and cocktail, this place is for you!
With a neon sign out front, Hula Tiki Lounge is a basement haven and is a homage to all things Tiki. This cool Manchester bar has quirky interior and is supplemented by a staggering rum and cocktail menu that could literally keep you busy for hours! With sporadic limbo competitions, Hula Tiki Lounge is cool and quirky personified.
Those who aren't in the know will be forgiven for striding straight on past Dusk Til Pawn. Hidden behind the pretence of an old pawn shop window, this is a speakeasy-styled joint featuring a free juxebox, comfy sofas and killer cocktails. Kick back with a drink or two, hear your favourite tunes ring out and embrace Dusk Til Pawn's quirky charm.
A stunning cantina bar with great tapas, Sandinista does Cuban inspired cocktails, live music and has great album artwork covering its walls. Named after The Clash's 4th album, Sandanista is cool to the core and throws great parties till 3am every night of the week.
Vintage charm meets cocktail finesse at this unusual Manchester bar. A wonderland for those that fancy harking back to the days of prohibition, Fitzgerald is primed for evenings of craft cocktails, romantic nooks and lush, live jazz.