Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Dry January? Alcohol-free Options in Manchester

Dry January? Manchester is here to give you a helping hand: be sure to sip on some of these non-alcoholic options and marvellous mocktails... 

Perhaps the boozy festivities of 2015 were enough to make you think ‘never again?’ Or you may be inspired to give up alcohol for a good cause – with donations to charity? Whatever your reason for giving up the drink, this has been the month to do it – Dry January. Do you think you can manage to take yourself away from the tipple for a whole 31 days?? Last year over 2 million people across the country managed it, and this year, a range of venues in Manchester are here to offer an array of alcohol-free options! 

         Some of the finest, fruitiest and most fantastical options around...

1)  Rosylee – this tearoom turned chic dining place serves up an array of creative mocktails for you to choose from. It proves that going alcohol-free doesn’t have to be inelegant – gone are the days of clutching a glass of coke in the corner! All three of their signature mocktails are well worth a try, with their Bramley Apple Crush being particularly good. It uses proper apple and elderflower cordial along with fresh juice, mint and soda. Rosylee. 11 Stevenson Square, Manchester M1 1DB

      2) The Alchemist - a brilliant bar with two locations in Manchester, Spinningfields and New York Street. They bring fantastic flair and some crazily creative cocktails – including a number of ‘Alchemists Apprentice’ choices; mocktails with might! With names such as ‘Bananaman’ and ‘Mango shake’ (this one comes complete with white chocolate foam!) you’re sure to be in for a treat. Make your friends envious with a drink which blends the best of dessert – and is much cheaper too. You can even go all retro with ‘Bubbly Gum’: an apple, lime and cranberry base infused with bubblegum and grenadine – served still bubbling! The Alchemist Spinningfields, 3 Hardman Street, Manchester, M3 3HF and The Alchemist ,1 New York St, Manchester M1 4HD

      3) Sakana – A pan Asian restaurant and bar on Peter Street, Sakana knows how to give guests a good time. The place is famed for its plush interiors, as well as its commitment to quality cuisine.  Their alcohol-free options open up adventures in themselves: with ‘Lychee Lemonade’ bringing big flavours of the Far East. They also offer what they call ‘detox hangover cure #1’, in the form of ‘Perfect Timing’: an alcohol-free blend of lavender cordial, lemon juice, soda and fresh herbs. There’s no need for alcohol amidst the stunning settings and great soft drink selections in Sakana. Sakana, 23 Peter St, Manchester, City Centre, UK M2 5QR

   4) The Botanist – This bustling bar is located right on Deansgate and has a number of non-alcoholic options ready to quench your thirst. They have everything from refreshing ‘Watermelon Dew’ to a seriously funked-up version of ‘Chocolate Milk’. You can even take yourself back to the tuck-shop with their ‘Cherry Cola Drop’ – cherry syrup and puree blended with fresh juices, rosemary and topped up with Pepsi. Perfect! The Botanist, 78 Deansgate M3 2FW

      5) Cottonopolis -   newcomer to the Northern Quarter, Cottonopolis opened in November, a bar and restaurant infusing Asian flavours with Manchester’s industrial legacy. Based in a Grade II listed building, the bar occupies a former tailor’s studio, with many of the original features still intact. Therefore you can immerse yourself in the experience and stay sober – complete with mocktails made up for you by the award-winning mixologist Jamie Jones. Why not sample ‘Shiso Fine’: a beautiful blend of shiso leaf, lemon, lime, egg white, yuzu and fritz lemonade: finished off with sugar. Other choices include ‘Just A Little Ting’ and ‘No G&T’, though a stand-out certainly is ‘Buzz to the Beet.’ Get to grips with a great combination of beetroot, apple and lemon, raised up with raspberries and finalised with black pepper! Pow!   Cottonopolis, 16 Newton Street, Manchester, M1 2AE

A selection at Taurus
   6)Taurus - a Canal Street bar and restaurant which celebrates seriously good food and drink in Manchester. ‘The Taurus Virgins’ are a series of non-alcoholic cocktails served with elegance - and the ‘Elderflower Mojito’ is particularly good here. The brilliance lies in a blend of muddled lime, mint and elderflower, topped up with soda. Or why not celebrate Summer early with a fun-filled ‘Kiss on The Beach’, complete with fresh passion fruit!  Taurus, 1 Canal St, Manchester, Lancashire M1 3HE

     7)  RevoluciĆ³n de Cuba - come on down to everyone’s favourite Cuban bar on Peter Street. These guys certainly know how to dress-up their drinks: and the on-alcoholic options are just as exotic as the others! ‘Shy Mai Tai’ is sweet almond, lime and apple, finished off with perfumed orange,  and soda – so certainly nothing ‘shy’ about it! Also packing a punch is their cranberry and ginger mojito; powerful flavours pulled together. If you prefer it lighter, there’s always the ‘Lavender Lemonade’ on offer too. RevoluciĆ³n de Cuba , 11 Peter St, Manchester M2 5QR

Burger and Lobster
    8)  Burger and Lobster – They call their cocktails ‘pretty bangin’’ and this is the case, even when alcohol isn’t involved! Burger and Lobster is a King Street restaurant and bar which doesn’t have a menu – invention is stead the key! They stock seasonal produce, as well as an array of cordials and waters for non-drinkers, so they can conjure you up something creative.  This means you can surprise yourself, or get as specific as you like with what’s available. Burger and Lobster, Ship Canal House, 98 King St, Manchester M2 4WU


      9) The Cosy Club – a restaurant and bar which revels in the beautiful architecture of The Corn Exchange, serving up lovely and long drinks you can chill with. Their soft drink selection must be one of the best in the city; offering options from ‘Berry Delight’ to ‘Watermelon Iced Tea’.  ‘Sherbet Lemonade’ is an old-school treat, whilst their ‘Virgin Mary’ certainly has attitude. The menu asks ‘how spicy would you like it?’ and with Worcestershire sauce, tabasco, and zingy tomato over ice, you’ll be beyond caring about the lack of vodka. Get cosy. The Cosy Club, 3 Corn Exchange, 37 Hanging Ditch, Manchester M4 3TR

     10) Sapporo Teppanyaki – this Japanese restaurant close to Castlefield serves up some mighty mocktails: it’s all part of their interactive and inclusive atmosphere. Sip away whilst you are entertained by the talented teppanyaki chefs, prepping food with flair before your very eyes. They have one of the most extensive mocktail menus too. The ‘Green Dragon’ is a serpent worth sampling; apple and lychee juice blended with aloe vera, zingy lemon and elderflower cordial - a great detox. Or get a taste of summer come early with their ‘Blushing Giesha’ – the ultimate strawberry mocktail. Sapporo Teppanyaki , 91-93 Liverpool Rd, Manchester M3 4JN
Sapporo Teppanyaki

      11)   Manchester House – it’s the ultimate destination for fine food and brilliantly blended drinks: and Manchester House makes sure that their non-alcoholic options still celebrate tradition with a twist. Guests enjoyment seems planned to perfection, all under the watchful eye of head chef   Aiden Byrne. The non-alcoholic ‘Bumble Bee’ could be considered as tribute to the ‘worker bee’ symbol of Manchester, and is buzzing with the flavours of honey, apple and lemon. Think an alcohol-free and chilled-down hot toddy: yum! Their ‘Virgin Mojito’ takes some beating too, bringing the perfect balance of lime and mint.  Manchester House, Tower 12, 18-22 Bridge St, Manchester M3 3BZ

Rosso – enjoy an elegant drink in one of Manchester’s most renowned celebrity haunts: Rosso. Owned by Rio Ferdinand, this is a restaurant and bar serving up selections fit for the stars, all complete with beautiful interior features which are grade II listed. Their range of mocktails show impressive attention to detail – their ‘Rinfresco’ a particularly interesting blend of citrus juices uplifted with apricot. They also offer a signature ‘Amalfi Iced Tea’; infused with raspberry and peach and a delicate ‘Apple Nojito’. Stay sophisticated, stay sober and enjoy it all at Rosso. Rosso, 43 Spring Gardens, Manchester M2 2BG

Cloud 23
1    13) Cloud 23 – soak up the scenery rather than the alcohol, and opt for a mocktail experience at one of Manchester’s must iconic and exclusive bars. The Hilton’s Cloud23 is located on the 23rd floor of Beetham Tower – so you can relax in plush interiors and look out across Manchester as you sip away. Their non-alcoholic options come under the heading of ‘Blue Sky Drinking’: so you can keep a clear head and instead enjoy some amazing flavours. Their ‘Bee On Time’ makes an instant impression, with its industry-inspired and expressive infusion of bee pollen, lemon sherbet, apple and sage. ‘Salute the Sun’ and ‘Cherry Blossom Skies’ are just some of the other options you can enjoy in Manchester’s highest drinking place. Cloud 23, Beetham Tower, 303 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4LQ

     14) Wahaca – this bold Mexican eatery and bar bursts with colour across two floors of the historic Corn Exchange. They are certainly serving up plenty to smile about this January – with flavours so fresh and fruity you won’t even miss the alcohol. It’s like a holiday in a glass with their ‘passion fruit and hibiscus cooler’ which is served up with bubbles. Or why not get your tastebuds tingling with their ‘Virgin Maria’: tomato juice, orange and pomegranate all topped off with spice. This is hot stuff! Wahaca, The Corn Exchange, Exchange St, Manchester M4 3TR

     15)  Dog Bowl – are you prepared to be bowled over by the choice of mocktails at Manchester’s much-loved ten-pin, Tex-Mex venue Dog Bowl? Inspired by old-school cavemen cartoon ‘The Flintstones’, inventive options such as ‘Dino Juice’ and ‘Strawberry Bam Bam’ are sure to quench your thirst. For a flavour of something truly exotic, try their ‘Coco Barmy’ too, a combination of coconut water, guava juice, lemon and luxurious coconut cream. You are sure to strike great things with their selection. Dog Bowl, Whitworth St W, Manchester M1 5WW

1  16)      Australasia - this beautiful underground bar serves up Australian-inspired food and drinks, as well as exploring the cultures of the Far East.  Their cocktails and drinks are hand-crafted for your enjoyment; so you can go sober and still feel pampered!. An apple, kiwi and lemon combination  provides a perfect pick-me-up, served tall and elegant.Their exotic choices mean you can enjoy the best of the East without the burn of alcohol too! Why not make the most of their watermelon lemonade or  mocktails packed with the freshest mangoes and coconuts, married together for a taste sensation?  Australasia, 1, The Avenue, Spinningfield, Manchester M3 3AP