If you like a liberal helping of neon, pizza, cocktails, good music and fun things, this one’s for you.
Spending a long weekend in Manchester, I’d forgotten that it being Easter Sunday meant a lot of shops and attractions were closed. Whoops. Thankfully, plenty of restaurants and bars were still open for business…which meant I basically had a weekend of eating and drinking ahead of me. What a hardship, eh?
These are four of my favourite quirky places we discovered for food, drink and fun activities in Manchester…
Having a birthday is haaard work, y’know – so we popped into a local convenience store in search of something to quench our thirst.
From the outside, Convenience Store looks just like…a convenience store. In fact, passers-by thought the same, popping in for a can of Coke or a Cornetto, only to discover something a little different. Because, spoiler alert…this store’s actually a bar!
The small space inside this Manchester bar is an intimate, wood and brick area with retro memorabilia and a ‘corner shop’ style sweet display on the bar itself. At the bar, you can enjoy cocktails such as the ‘Flaming Moe’, ‘Stranger Tings 2’ or, my fave, the ‘Super Squishy’. Gin, cassis, grape syrup and cream soda cordial, topped with a squirt of boozy slushie. That’s my kinda drink.
100-102 High St, M4 1HP
I like pizza, and I like hotdogs. So it stands to reason that Dogs’n’Dough, which I’d researched before I went to Manchester, would be high on the list of places to eat.
The décor here is SO me – it’s an underground space, walls lined with American-style cartoonish illustrations along the themes of pizza and hotdogs. And obviously, a touch of neon.
The 12 inch pizzas were a struggle to finish – we had two between us, and the bases are pretty hefty. Good though. I’m usually more of a thin crust gal, but this is true ‘line your stomach’ grub. We had a ‘Pig Lebowski’ and ‘Texas Joe’ covered in generous meat ‘n’ cheese toppings and a squirt of all-American tasting sauces. The beer selection is really good too.
17 Bow Ln, M2 4FW
Roxy Ball Room
Much more than just a bar, this is the kinda place you could find yourself hanging out for hours on end. There’s pool, ping pong and a photobooth, as well as retro arcade games and a heavily rock/indie soundtrack. The whole space is upstairs, with just a small door sandwiched between a Slug and Lettuce and a Wetherspoons.
On the top floor, you’ll also find a fabulous 18 hole golf course with fun tropical theming and even some glow-in-the dark fun. I won, obviously.
Roxy Ball Room Manchester
76-78 Deansgate, M3 2FN
More pizza? Okay, FINE. Tequila cocktails? Alright then. Crazy Pedro’s does both of these, and it does them pretty damn well.
There are two Crazy Pedros pizza restaurants in Manchester, one in the Northern Quarter and one just off Deansgate. We were in the latter – a small, colourful spot where we managed to find a free table. We sipped on Hellfire Club cocktails, made up of a generous serving of tequila and some fiery ginger beer.
Crazy Pedros’ pizzas are an impressive 16 inches (also available by the slice), so we only ordered one between two – of course, ‘half-and-half-ing’ to make the most of the menu. The Gringo was the winner, topped with pulled pork, jalapenos, sweetcorn, sour cream and mezcal-infused salsa – and the best bit, crispy tortilla chips. No joke, this made me just want to crumble Doritos onto every pizza ever. But the Wacko Jacko was also highly enjoyable, with plenty of pepperoni and jerk chicken.
Crazy Pedro’s Manchester
55-57 Bridge St, M3 3BQ / Short St, M1 1JG