Half Pint Tour: Manchester

Now, three pubs isn’t really a crawl, more of a Pub Glimpse, but even so over the weekend I visited a few gems in the centre of Manchester with fellow beer geek, Bathy and her university cohorts. Starting off from what I can only describe as the middle of nowhere at Bathy’s house (Manchester confuses me) we bussed and trammed our way to the location of one of Manchester’s own breweries, Marble Beers. 

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Tucked away from St Peter’s square is a classy bar on Thomas Street. More like a cafe than a pub you can play backgammon, chess or cards on the long, friendship inducing, table whilst you try any of the huge bottle selection, four rotating keg beers or one of the casks that sit proudly on the bar. Meanwhile a selection of pastries and paninis will lust at you from the chalk board menus. 

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Enjoying the novelty of the ale being served straight from the casks on the bar top we opted for the Chocolate Marble. Also, it was called “Chocolate Marble”. How on Earth can a beer called something such as “Chocolate Marble” not be utterly delicious? And it was, a gorgeous chocolatey stout. Beautiful stout though with less of the creaminess that I tend to like. Still a great ale that I’ll definitely drink again. 

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Ale Chocolate Marble
Brewery Marble Beers, Manchester
ABV 5.5% 
Style Chocolate stout 
Description “Our longest standing recipe is brewed with an emphasis on chocolate malts; this unclassifiable beer straddles milds to porters, tasting of coffee, cocoa and liquorice with a quenching bitter finish." 
Verdict ★★★☆☆

Next on the agenda was Manchester’s branch of BrewDog as Bathy has been a long time fan of the brewery and I have only recently fallen for it. Just like Birmingham the bar is gorgeous, modern and sticks with BrewDog’s attractive brand.

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Playing it safe we went for 5AM Saint and Dead Pony Club, only toying with the idea of trying Tactical Nuclear Penguin before wimping. I think that’s definitely on the agenda for when I manage to drag Bathy down to the Midlands to show her the wonder of Birmingham’s pubs.

Onwards to a pub tucked underneath a bridge. The Thirsty Scholar was exactly my kind of place, studenty, overflowing with personality and basically underground.

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Though I wasn’t tempted by any of the real ales on range they had a variety of other drinks I love, from Rekorderlig on tap (that’s a first for me), Red Stripe (Sorry! Guilty Pleasure!) and even my favourite bourbon on the back shelf. Other great touches were the Pringle vending machine (know your audience) and the entirely vegan menu. Now, though I’m a carnivore and proud I do love the creativity you get in independent pub menus that stray away from the obvious.

I could have definitely spent the night in The Thirsty Scholar if we didn’t already have plans. And I hope to return and find other great pubs in the great expanse of Manchester. With many local breweries offering tours I quite think another weekend of beer is needed up north.

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