Over the past few years, the Manchester craft beer scene has grown, with new breweries and bars opening almost every month. Rich in industrial heritage, Manchester is one of the UK's biggest cities and is famous for a long list of things.
Scratch a little deeper beyond the city's exterior and you will find that Manchester has a hugely famous beer heritage to be proud of and its modern beer scene is positively vibrant at the moment. With enough offerings to rival any other city worldwide, here is a craft-beer enthusiast's guide to the Manchester beer scene.
Cloudwater Unit 9
Just a stone's throw away from the hustle and bustle of Great Ancoats Street, Cloudwater Unit 9 has an almost zen-like calm. Ornamental plants decorate the minimalist, yet Scandi-style wooden interior. It is a space which is as design conscious as the artwork in the bar. Cloudwater is a place which is zealous when it comes to freshness, and the 20 taps here pour beers which are kegged and served within 7 days from a very cool 3'c cold-store.
All the beers here are served in third, half and two-third measures - no pints. Whilst this decision is likely to annoy some, much like the bar's decision to go cashless and accept card-only, it does make it one of the cheaper places in Manchester and is just £3.50 for a flat price.
Seven Bro7hers Beerhouse
A different world away from that of other, sometimes oppressive, craft beer bars, Seven Bro7hers Ancoats bar is a much friendlier and looser offering. Ancoats has become a thriving hub of food and drink and is now home to some of the best restaurants in the city if you are looking for where to eat in Manchester during your beer tour. Seven Bro7hers is one of the most popular boozers in the area. Even with all of its hipster styling choices, it is a very unpretentious place to drink which, in Manchester, can be hard to come across.
Their tap selection includes a wide range of different guest brews, but it is their home brews which you need to look out for. With their brewery located just across town, many people visit to taste one of their own offerings, with favourites in their stouts and keg IPA.
One of Manchester's more underground offerings, Beer Nouveau is furnished with salvaged fireplaces and old sofas and is a homely take on the railway arch in which it is situated. A little further out of the city centre and into Ardwick, it is a regular host of irregular events, including home-brew meetups and themed tasting evenings.
The owner, Steve Dunkley, is fascinated by unusual and historic brewing methods and recipes and often has a barrel-aged or gravity dispersed offering each week. Beer Noveau started life as one of England's smallest commercial breweries, with a brew length of just 42 litres, and was made from mainly recyclable materials, making it also one of the UK's most environmentally friendly brewing operations.
Brewing beer below the railway arches of Red Bank since 2017, Beatnikz Republic has now extended their presence in Manchester with the opening of it's Northern Quarter bar. With a 120-person capacity, there are 14 kegs on offer with a split between Beatnikz' own brews and the constantly-rotating selection of guest ales and beers as well as a range of limited edition and rare bottles.
If you fancy a break from ale, there is also a wide selection of spirits on offer, too. If you want to expand on your craft beer knowledge, then you can also enlist at the Brew School, which offers a tutored tasting session which gives you the chance to sample some of the latest brews and learn more about what is on offer.