Friday, 14 August 2009

As he opened a crate of ale...

A quickie this - will be in (central) Manchester this weekend catching up with an old friend and am looking for tips from my merry, if few, readers. Naturally, I have CAMRA's reliable Good Beer Guide, but your thoughts on, say, a top three unmissable pubs would be welcome, as would beer guidance.

Cheers - and have a great weekend.

Looking for pubs that blend beer choice/quality with decent pub atmosphere, I need hardly add.

I feel the need to stress that, while the GBG is not perfect (too much focus on whether beer is good than the atmosphere convivial is a criticism I've often heard and have some sympathy with), I do feel it cannot be beaten as a pub guide and it is a credit to CAMRA. For the traveller entering completely unknown territory, it is essential. Buy it here (er...or don't, wait a couple of months and buy the 2010 edition, but you catch my drift).


Curmudgeon said...

I'm sure Tandleman or Tyson could give a much better answer than me, but I get the impression that of the pubs listed in the current GBG the Marble Arch is the "if you can only visit one pub" candidate.

Now, if you wanted to take a ten-minute train ride to Stockport...

From the point of view of a user I agree that the GBG does seem to often focus exclusively on beer (and sometimes choice of beers more than quality as such) rather than wider pub characteristics, but that I suppose is its unique selling point. You learn to read between the lines, and if you went away from that principle you could all too easily end up with a guide to atmospheric pubs serving mediocre beer.

jesusjohn said...

Curmudgeon - thanks for that. I have nothing to add to what you've said; I agree with every word.

Max said...

Forget central Manchester - go to Salford!

The New Oxford,Bexley Square in Salford is only 10 minutes walk from Deansgate in central Manchester and it's superb. Clean, welcoming and the best range of beers in the area.

The Kings Arms on Bloom Street is close to the New Oxford and is also well worth a look.

A little further up from the New Oxford is another classic, the Crescent. I think they've got a beer festival on this weekend.

The Castle on Oldham Street is central Manchester's only tied Robinsons pub and is worth the experience.

The Smithfield is dire. I really wouldn't bother!

Bar Fringe and Crown and Kettle can often be good.

Jolly Angler on Ducie St (I think) isnt far from Piccadilly Station and is a time warp back street boozer (Hydes Original).

Enjoy yourself!

jesusjohn said...

Many thanks Max - that looks most compelling!

Jeffrey said...

In my experience the GBG favours weird old man's pubs. So I don't like it.