Love Drinks have unveiled a 40% ABV bison grass infused vodka, with the intention of rivalling Zubrowka. Grasovka, which has been available in Germany for many years, is made from traditional Polish vodka, infused with dried bison grass from the Bialowieza National Park, which straddles the borders of Poland and Belarus and where wild bison can be found. A blade of bison grass is contained in each bottle, giving it a mildly fruity flavour and spicy aroma. It is best served over ice with cloudy apple juice and garnished with a slice of apple.
Soft-porn publisher and Soho property tycoon, Paul Raymond, has had a gin dedicated to him by his son Howard.King Of Soho Gin is a 42% ABV London Dry Gin distilled in the heart of London using traditional methods and crafted with 12 botanicals to create a unique flavour of soft juniper and coriander, with a high presence of citrus ingredients including grapefruit peel, balanced by angelica root and cassia. The unique bottle embodies the characteristics of Soho. At the moment it is only available to buy online and in a handful of London bars. Paul Raymond opened Britain's first strip club in 1958 and went on to publish porn magazines Men Only and Escort, becoming the richest man in Britain in 1992 with a £1.5 billion fortune. He was the subject of the Steve Coogan and Anna Friel film 'The Look Of Love' earlier this year.
Steve Pilling, the man behind the brilliant Damson MediaCityUK and the acclaimed Red Lion in Stockport, has revealed his plans to launch Salford Quays first real gastropub by the end of October 2013. Located in Media City, Dock Yard, will offer quality fine wines, real ales and a high standard of pub cuisine, including handmade pies and burgers, spit roast chicken, artisan bread, breakfasts and more.
A new handcrafted 45% ABV London Dry Gin has been launched inspired by the pioneering spirit of 19th century African explorers and the botanical discoveries they made. The artisan Elephant Gin is produced in Germany made using 14 different botanicals including some rare ingredients such as African wormwood and the buchu plant. Not only is this a uniquely flavoured gin, it is also charitable like Snow Leopard vodka, with 15% of all profits being donated to two African Elephant foundations, which are devoted to the conservation of wildlife in Africa.
Manchester City Council has proposed an Early Morning Restriction Order for Manchester’s Gay Village. If the EMRO is enforced, it would be the first in the city and see many venues along Canal Street being forced to stop selling alcohol at a designated time, which could be set anywhere between midnight and 6am. The council believe the move would cut alcohol-related incidents but bar owners are opposing the idea, instead pushing for more CCTV and street lighting in the belief that it would improve the behaviour of late night revellers. Blackpool City Council are currently facing huge opposition for a similar booze ban, with bars and clubs in the resort potentially prevented from selling alcohol after 3am.
Hot on the heels of the recently re-launched Hooch, Crabbie's are set to leave Ginger Beer territory for the first time with the launch of their Crabbie’s Cloudy Alcoholic Lemonade. Another change will see the new drink sold in smaller 330ml bottles. It's the sixth Crabbie's variant to hit the market and joins their Original, Black, Spiced Orange, Scottish Raspberry and Strawberry & Lime alcoholic ginger beers. We're sure the grown-up Famous Five and Secret Seven would approve.
Crazy, we know, but we actually bring you a little bit of Living Ventures news that doesn't involve the opening of a new bar or restaurant! The Oast House in Spinningfields is hoping to break a world record at 6pm on Wednesday the 7th of August, by playing host to the world’s biggest ale tasting. To break the previous world record they need over 267 tasters to attend and partake free in the tasting of three local ales (which surprisingly doesn't include Guinness). A Guinness World Records adjudicator will be on site to announce the success of the cask-cracking attempt, live on stage. If you fancy helping to break a world record, you need to register beforehand (click here for more info).
Following unsubstantiated rumours that Manchester City Council have served Almost Famous in the Northern Quarter orders not to sell pink burgers, somebody at the cult diner must have taken the order too literally after a large fire broke out in the kitchens at 1:30pm on Friday 28th June. Fire crews are currently battling the blaze in the landmark building which also houses the Keko Moku tiki bar and Mexican diner, Luck, Lust, Liquor & Burn (formerly Socio Rehab). The restaurant was full at the time although, fortunately, all staff and customers were evacuated safely. Sadly the building looks to be severely damaged with much of the roof destroyed. We're not sure if there's any truth in the rumours that doorstaff refused access to emergency services until there was a queue of at least ten firemen.
Police have issued an image of a dog and its owner after the animal mauled another dog to death in front of shocked Bank Holiday families outside the Oast House on the afternoon of 6th May 2013. Daisy, an 18-month-old toy Yorkshire Terrier, who was on her lead at the time, sustained fatal injuries after being horrifically mauled by the other dog, believed to be an Akita-type breed, which was not on a lead. Following the attack, the owner put his dog back on its lead and they both walked off towards Bridge Street. Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
The owners of Hula Tiki Lounge are to open new Northern Quarter tea rooms on the two floors above the popular Stephenson Square basement bar. Rosie Lee Tearooms will soon be openly daily until 10:30pm in the unit formerly occupied by fashion lable Fit To Dance.
Not content with having just The Alchemist, Australasia, The Oast House, The Long Bar, Artisan Kitchen & Bar and Manchester House (not to mention the Olive and Grill On The Alley just across the road), Knutsford's Living Ventures open their seventh Spinningfield's establishment on July 1st. Grand Pacific Bar & Garden will be in the old unit vacated by their shortlived Peppermint Bay, behind the Armani store. With a canopied outdoor garden, a staircase will attach it to Australasia below and the new Pacific Rim themed long cocktail bar will serve bar snacks and sushi, direct from Australasia's menu.
Manchester 235’s beautiful Fusion Bar, which closed earlier this month for refurbishment, has announced that, when it re-opens on the 28th June, it will be called Vega Lounge. The lounge which is named after a star in the Northern Hemisphere, and inspired by Las Vegas, will boast a new food and drink menu, which will include The Vault – a cocktail presented in a working safe.
English Gin distiller Hayman's is set to mark its 150th anniversary by relaunching its gin range. The emphasis will be on the company’s history as a family distiller since 1863, making it the longest serving Gin distilling family in England. The range will be given a new bottle design based on a 1947 bottle found in the family's archives, with a new Victorian-inspired logo. Hayman's London Dry Gin, Old Tom Gin, and Sloe Gin will be rebranded immeditaely with their 1850 Reserve Gin and Gin Liqueur to follow later.
This year's Manchester Pride parade starts outside the Hilton Deansgate at 1pm on Saturday 24 August. It makes its way up Deansgate before turning right opposite Kendals and cutting back towards the Town Hall down Cross Street. From here, it makes its way down Princess Street to the Gay Village. You do not need Big Weekend tickets or wristbands to watch the parade, however, you will need them to get into the area around Canal Street afterwards.
UK festival goers will get the chance to visit the new Jaegermeister 'Deep Freeze' ice bar, which will be appearing at 25 music events across the country including Kendal Calling, Bloodstock, SlamDunk and Leeds. Visitors will be given special capes as they enter the bar, which will be chilled to -10°C and includes ice-covered walls, ice sculptures, a maze, interactive photo wall, VIP area and free wi-fi. Jaegermeister is the third best-selling liquor in the UK with over 180 million shots sold last year, 90% of which were in Jaegerbombs (Red Bull & Jaegermeister), something they are keen to distance themselves from.
WKD, the popular pre-mixed vodka alcopop have announced two new flavours, WKD Orange and the apple flavoured WKD Green. Both are currently available exclusively in Yates's but will be available nationwide from July and backed by a 'Green With Envy?' poster campaign. They will permanently replace the short-lived WKD Core apple cider.
Drinks Company Eliots have launched a new range of flavoured vodkas to the UK market. Mysthic Vodka, which is already being sold in Portugal, is being billed as a budget vodka and has six flavours in the range - blackcurrant, strawberry, wild berry, melon, chocolate and caramel.
Fans of American Indian Pale Ales will be pleased to hear that Delaware craft brewery, Fordhams have released a West Coast style brew to the UK market. Rams Head IPA contains pale, Munich and rye malts, along with Barvo, Chinook, and Motueka hops, which help to create a 7.5% ABV beer which apparently pairs well with pork belly, Indian cuisine, blue cheese and rice pudding.
Not content with having just The Alchemist, Australasia, The Oast House, The Artisan and Manchester House (not to mention the Olive and Grill On The Alley just across the road), Living Ventures have opened their latest Spinningfield's bar - the pop-up Long Bar opens on 24th May with its own designated area of the new lawns. Together with artisan cocktails, it will serve deli style food and provide entertainment from Thursday to Sunday evenings. At what point will the area be renamed 'LVfields'?
The Northern Quarter's TV21 has laid down the mother of all food challenges. On June 11th, from 7pm, they will be offering a 30cm tall burger, containing 1kg of burger patties, plus onion rings, hash browns, eggs, bacon, cheese, mustard, mayo and salad. There’s also a hearty side helping of hand-cut chips, along with Texas red chili. Successfully take on this burger all by yourself and win your money back.
Three independent Japanese breweries are set to export craft beer to the UK for the first time. The Minoh Beer Brewery, Brimmer Brewing, and Baird Brewing Comapny are able to sell beers in the UK thanks to a deal with Number One Drinks Company, the Japanese whiskey specialists who currently import Chichibu, Hanyu and Karuizawa whilst also exporting Brewdog beers to Japan.
Peter Street looks to have finally shed it's reputation as the binge drinking, party place that saw just as many blue flashing lights as it did disco lights. The likes of Epernay and Opus One Champagne bars, Manchester235 super casino, Revolucion de Cuba, All Star Bowling, Rekorderlig Summer Garden, Trof and Brewdog have long replaced Brannigans, Chicago Rock, Cheerleaders and Bar 38. This summer sees the arrival of an exclusive three storey VIP establishment, Liv Manchester, a collaboration from the The Circle Club and Ocean Treasure amongst others. The over 21’s nightspot is set to open in the old Chicago Rock unit and will include a basement nightclub, a ground floor bar and a top class Pan Asian restaurant above. It aims to be the city's most exclusive bar and club.
Living Ventures open their sixth Spinningfield's establishment, Artisan Kitchen & Bar, this June. Located above Neighbourhood and below the eagerly anticipated and Michelin Star hopeful Manchester House, it is being described as "loft studio meets concrete warehouse - stripped back and raw", decorated with sculptures and art. The spacious, informal bar will serve a collection of innovative cocktails to a soundtrack provided by DJ’s playing on in-built decks throughout the week.
Pernod Ricard are set to launch a new premium gin in the UK this June. The handcrafted Beefeater Burrough’s Reserve Gin is made using an original Beefeater recipe and distilled in the original copper 'Still Number 12' used by the founder of Beefeater, James Burrough, in the 1860s. It will be initally released in Spain, before being rolled out in the UK with each bottle carrying a batch and bottle number with only a limited number released each year. They are hoping the gin will “redefine the way gin is consumed” and recommend it is drank neat.
Brazennose Street, opposite the Town Hall and next to Lincoln Square, is set to get a new bar with a new planning application being submitted for Veeno, presumably a wine bar to be located in the old Pret a Manger unit ~ 12 Aug 2013
Just across the road, the old 70s and 80s disco music bar Cellar Vie on Lloyd Street is set to be re-opened ~ 12 Aug 2013
"Manchester Internation Festival venue Mayfield Depot, which played host to Massive Attack, has had a permanent planning application submitted to Manchester City Council. Located opposite the taxi rank at Piccadilly Station, it will be licensed for live entertainment including sporting events and music." ~ 29 Jul 2013
The original Trof in Fallowfield has been sold to David Hollins, one of the men behind The Ruby Lounge. It will be renamed Fallow. ~ 29 Jul 2013
There's yet another new bar to hit the Northern Quarter. Eleska’s Bar and Restaurant is set to open in the beautiful Eleska House on Dale Street, one of the buildings used in the filming of Captain America ~ 27 Jun 2013
Scottish brewer Brewdog are offering £4m worth of shares to drinkers at £95 per share. Their Equity for Punks share scheme raised £2.2m in 2011 and offers investors a lifetime discount in their bars ~ 21 Jun
R'House on Hilton Street in the Northern Quarter has closed down less than six months after opening. The owners, the same people behind the neighbouring Crown & Anchor, Lola's and Lammars, will be reopening it as the refurbished and toned-down Shack~ 19 Jun 2013
The owners of Brewdog have moved into the spirits market with the launch of Wattdickie, a 35% ABV distilled beer ~ 14 Jun
Spinningfields will play host to the pop-up Aperol Spritz Social bar from 24th June to 7th July ~ 11 Jun
Another bar in Chorlton is up for sale with Nook & Cranny your's for just £55,000. The current lease runs until 2020 ~ 6 Jun
The former Casa D'Arte ladies fashionwear store on the corner of Dale Street and Newton Street in the Northern Quarter is soon to be transformed into Cottonopolis Food & Liquor~ 4 Jun 2013
Kosmonaut in the Northern Quarter have expanded their dining area with the opening of a new 80 seater American style diner ~ 3 Jun 2013
St Anne Square will host the Craft & Cake Market between 6th and 9th June which will include a Mediterranean style bar ran by Little Spain, a stall familiar to visitors of the Christmas Markets ~ 3 Jun 2013
The owners of Folk in Didsbury are looking to turn the former Blockbuster video store on Lapwing Lane into a new wine shop and bar called Wine & Wallop~ 29 May 2013
Bloom, the latest pop-up bar in Spinningfields, opens on the 30th May. Ran by Fluid Bars it will serve cocktails and summer drinks garnished with berries and herbs grown on-site ~ 28 May 2013
A planning application has been submitted for a new bar, Craft Beer, at The Lowry Outlet in Salford Quays~ 24 May 2013
Hookahs Shisha Cafe on Barlow Moor Road in Chorlton is up for sale for a pound short of £150,000, with an annual rent of £26,000, and is held on a 5 year lease which expires in 2015 ~ 21 May
From 10th - 13th October, the second Indy Man Beer Con will be held at Victoria Baths celebrating independent beers and progressive brewing. Breweries featured include Marble, Thornbridge, Magic Rock, Dark Star, Redwillow, Quantum, Tap East, Roosters, Liverpool Craft, Camden Town, Beavertown, Cromarty, Tiny Rebel and Italy's Birrificio Italiano, Toccalmatto, Brewfist and Birra del Borgo ~ 20 May
Bank Holiday weekend (24th & 25th May) sees St Peters Church in Ancoats play host to the North West Wine Fest, a collective of independent wine retailers including Bakerie, Harvey Nichols, Corks Out and Hanging Ditch ~ 20 May
Kahlúa Coffee House have arranged a mini street festival to spice up the Bank Holiday Weekend on Saturday 25th May with a range of chilli-eating challenges and Mariachi bands ~ 14 May
Oxford Road Train Station coffee shop Java Bar, has applied to Manchester City Council to allow the sale of alcoholic beverages on the premises ~ 8 May