Manchester. A city synonymous with music, fashion, industry, and football but with so much more. Trailblazing and pioneering all with a bit of northern swagger.
The Capital of the North has a colourful modern history but there’s a real sense that now is the time it is truly coming into its own. Gone are the days of the working mills, now are the days of eclectic cultural thrills. But what makes the ideal day out in the city?
Well it’s pretty tough with mancs and visitors alike having a plethora of choices on the menu right now. But it’d go a little something like this. It’s going to include a lot of eating and drinking, obviously.
If you’re visiting for the night or weekend then pick yourself out a room at Native - a cool aparthotel sat just upstairs from Ducie Street Warehouse, and if you’ve got the train in it’s incredibly handy for Piccadilly station.
To be honest you could do worse than just milling around here all day but that would maybe be a little bit boring so let’s move on for breakfast - we’ll be back later but grab yourself a coffee from the counter in the Warehouse on the way out.
In recent years the Manchester breakfast & brunch scene, like many, has thrived as pesky millennials splash out on that avo on toast instead of buying houses. There are lots of places we could suggest here but to keep things local, head down into the Northern Quarter and get a table at Another Heart to Feed, Ezra & Gil or Federal. They all get pretty busy.
Once fed and watered, have a wander around the Northern Quarter, Manchester’s original cool neighbourhood. The Northern Quarter is lively, a bit grungy, has plenty of character and it’s home to some of the city’s finest.
If shopping is your gig head into Deadstock General Store for some unique bits, Piccadilly Records to pick up some wax, or Oi Polloi for some dead good mens clothes. There are loads of other good spots too - Unitom, Nordic Muse, Carhartt and Ad Hoc to name a few and if you venture into Ancoats, which we most definitely recommend, then Northern Lights is definitely worth a visit.
If you’re after something a bit more culturally engaging then there are loads of great museums and galleries too. Head to the Whitworth or Manchester art gallery for the latest exhibitions, or to the Science and Industry or National Football Museums to soak up some knowledge.
All that shopping, or cultural expeditioning, makes one thirsty, so maybe time for another coffee - head to Just Between Friends, Trove, or Pollen for your fix.
Ok maybe now it’s time to head over to Ancoats. A behemoth of Manchester’s industrial past, a victim of it’s decline, and a roaring success of it’s resurgence. Ancoats is Manchester at it’s very best - resilient, independent, creative, and with just the right amount of northern grit.
A part of the city left to rot, Ancoats is a jewel in the crown of urban regeneration, replacing derelict and burned out cars with coffee roasteries, sourdough bakeries, a Michelin starred restaurant, and natural wine bars.
We suggest sampling the burgeoning food and wine scene here - and there’s plenty of choice. Head to Mule for ramen and drinks, The Jane Eyre for small plates and cocktails (look out for those featuring us), Erst for a frequently changing menu of incredibly, inventive creations and natural wine, or Sugo for the best pasta in the city.
And limiting Ancoats to just four spots really does its other restaurants a disservice. You can’t go wrong anywhere here.
After you’ve sampled the best of what Ancoats has to offer for food and drink - it’s probably time to enjoy some more.
Watch the sun go down, hopefully, at Flawd on New Islington Marina. One of the few spots in the city where you have a good view of sunset and also one of the best newcomers in recent years serving some of the best natural wines and locally grown produce to pair.
Now time to have a little dance. If the Warehouse project is in town then it’s definitely worth checking out who’s on and pay it a visit. Hidden, The White Hotel, and Loft also have some great events on too. For something a bit more low key but still lively, head to Ducie Street Warehouse, Firehouse, Soup Kitchen and Behind Closed Doors - probably in that order too. And if you’re after some Jazz - get yourself to Matt & Phreds.
There’s loads to do in Manchester, this is just a tiny snapshot but a real good day out in the city. We’ll share more of our top spots and tips soon.