The world of whisky can be a complicated one, with flavours, blends and ages all coming into play. Fortunately, the city of Manchester offers the perfect antidote to such confusion; a slew of bars containing clued-up bartenders ready to escort you on a whisky adventure.
Manchester, much like other northern cities such as Newcastle and Liverpool, has a great whisky drinking community, with bars and shops aplenty. Here, we’ll talk you through some of our favourites and why you should be visiting them when you stay in this diverse and vibrant city.
The Whisky Jar
Found tucked away on Tariff Street, The Whisky Jar has a collection that rivals some of the best bars in the UK, with a wide range of Scottish whiskies from a plethora of distilleries, along with American, Japanese and Irish, English, and even Taiwanese and Indian!
Their sips range from £3-£4 all the way up to around £20 for the more desirable, aged drinks.
Whisky is not all that’s on offer at this location either, with regular live music events such as jazz nights on a Monday and frequent open mic nights. The bar also offers whisky tasting and whisky festivals which allow you to try a variety of drinks from their collection.
The Briton’s Protection
An old public house located on Great Bridgewater Street, expect a warm and welcoming, classic city pub when setting foot in the Briton’s Protection. There is a selection of rooms to sit and drink, two with roaring fires during the colder months, perfect for defrosting from the harsh northern weather. Although a fine range of other beverages is available, the whisky collection is the star of the show (just as it should be!).
The bar is seemingly tardis-like, modest from the outside but an elaborate maze of rooms on the inside.
Their whisky collection is over 200 strong, with a collection of old favourites, celebrated news blends and some more exotic flavours thrown in for good measure. The Briton’s Protection is award-winning, and it’s easy to see why when setting foot into the place. When visiting Manchester, this is not one to miss!
The Gas Lamp
The aptly named, underground atmospheric masterpiece that is The Gas Lamp opened in 2010, making a relatively new addition to Manchester’s array of drinking locations. Found on Bridge Street, the whisky catalogue on offer is a sizeable collection of bottles from around the world, mostly made up of well known and well-loved Scottish brands.
There is also a fine selection of beer and gin available for those who aren’t dedicated whisky-drinkers.
With the usual suspects such as Highland, Islay and Speyside all present and correct, the selection then ventures into Japan, Ireland and Sweden, offering the chance to try something a little different. With prices starting at just £4, sips can range up to around £20, for the rarer and more desirable drinks.
If you’re looking to make a night of it, then you’ll want to head to Whiskey Down, located on Lloyd Street. Stepping through the doors, you’ll be transported back in time to a James Bond-esque private members club that recalls the great era of the 1970s.
Their whisky collection, although not as sizeable as others on this list, is broad in diversity and prices begin at around £7, and range as high as £40 catering to more experienced drinkers’ tastes. Speaking of tastes, the location bills itself as a ‘superluxe playground’ meaning that you can encounter anything from the beautifully styled games room to a ‘she wants revenge’ room with influence taken from Fifty Shades of Grey.
Lost in Tokyo
As you’d expect with a bar of this name, this location is entirely Japanese in style, offering food, drinks and atmosphere that is influenced by this Asian nation. A stroll down Lever Street, you’ll see Lost in Tokyo, a subtle doorway to a whisky haven, especially for fans of Japanese whisky!
Beers, cocktails and most importantly, whisky are sold here, with a strong range of each to keep you going back to the bar to try something new. A range of music is played, with Thursdays being predominantly alternative, pop-punk and emo, while hip-hop and RnB will be heard on Friday and Saturday. For something a little different, Lost in Tokyo is where you want to go!
If you’re looking for something to tide you over until your next visit to Manchester? Why not check out our range of Scottish, Irish or Japanese whisky for sale on our website? You can also find a great hoard of useful information on whisky drinking on our blog!