Injecting some much-needed greenery into the city’s urban high rise, Manchester has plenty of secret gardens and parks hidden in plain sight. From Sky Park to St John’s, we sure know how to make the most of the great outdoors on a seasonal summer afternoon (picnic and the pub, anyone?). But what if I told you alfresco dining was possible no matter the weather? Yep, that’s right, all hail The Lawn Club; Spinningfields' answer to outdoor bars in a city famous for rain.
Light and bright, this is the place for social butterflies to thrive – and not just because of the luscious foliage tumbling from the roof. The close pergola seating sets groups up to mix, with people spinning round on benches to chat over the DJ's tunes, spreading that Friday feeling right across the venue. As early evening leans into night, diners turn to dancers, with enough cocktails flowing to two-step their way into the weekend - perfect for holding events at The Lawn Club. In a nutshell, if a beer garden could have a glow up, this would definitely be it.
In the year of the Barbie movie, it seemed only right to start the evening with cocktails that were pretty in pink. Pausing our catch up for just a moment, my friend and I went for the Chase cosmo (£12.50), which included vodka from the award-winning Herefordshire drinks brand, and apple and rhubarb gimlet (£12.50). Fruity and light, the gimlet was a petite palette cleanser, setting me up well for the meal ahead with its gin, lime, and pomegranate mix. While neither drink held back on the spirits, the cosmo had more of a sweet taste, with its cranberry flavour stealing the spotlight.
Continuing the pink drink theme, our next two cocktails stepped the evening up a notch, although service was a tad slow. Paired with some seriously scrumptious food – I’ll get onto that in a minute – the Patron tequila menu didn’t disappoint. Opting for a long drink, I grabbed the refreshing strawberry and elderflower cooler (£14); a great accompaniment to food as the flavours were subtle, not overpowering. The rhubarb and lychee sour (£12.50) however was the complete opposite, tasting just like a drumstick lolly. I’d call it more of a dessert drink, but my pal was pretty chuffed with her choice.
Before my visit, this joint held a place in my mind as perfect for drinks with the girls. Though that still rings true, we found that it's also the place to be for dining across our review of The Lawn Club Manchester menu. Sharing is the way to do it, especially because picking just one item from the menu seemed near impossible. Kicking us off with a summer classic, the chicken Caesar salad (£12.50) is a popular dish to pull off everywhere, and here it hit the spot. Crunchy and crisp, this would be my go-to, because it leaves enough room to enjoy a side dish without feeling too full. On the flip side, the carne pizza (£13) was filling to say the least, but well worth it. Not at all greasy, the meaty mix of bacon, ham, and salami had a perfect dough-to-topping ratio, and would hold its own without any add-ons.
Unable to resist some side dishes, we perhaps had eyes bigger than our bellies, choosing the messy fries (£9) and salt’n’pepper pigs in blankets (£6). Loaded as their name suggests, the former were covered in bacon, cheddar, spiced mayo, and chives. As supporting roles go, it doesn’t take a genius to work out these were a smash hit. Although it must be said that the pigs in blankets felt a little out of place. Christmas had come a tad too early for my liking, leaving behind the much-anticipated salt and pepper flavours.
Just when we thought The Lawn Club had nothing left to offer, out came the chocolate fudge cake (£5) and sticky toffee pudding (£5). Both were served alongside vanilla ice cream (£1) and we had no problem polishing them off. A delightfully delicious end to the evening, these were comfortingly warm classics, pairing well with the coolness of the ice cream. Sweet tooth, satisfied.
The DesignMyNight Digest
Bringing a boujee upgrade to a classic beer garden, The Lawn Club is for the sage green girlies looking for an Insta-worthy start to their night while checking out the hottest Spinningfields restaurants. Putting a modern twist on pub grub and comfort food, their menu is sure to line your stomach for the night ahead, without breaking the bank. Be prepared for heavy beats and a bustling atmosphere too.
💰 The damage: Just over £100 for food and two drinks each.
📍 The location: Hardman Square, Spinningfields M3 3HG.
👌 Perfect for: Summer dining and drinks in a large group.
⭐ Need to know: You can also munch the mains and desserts we tried as part of bottomless brunch.
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