NEXT week’s citywide liquor extravaganza Manchester Loves Cocktails (September 4-10) is jam packed with treats and looks set to better 2016 when it attracted more than 2,500 aficionados. Check out its website for the staggering list of events, parties, dinners, tastings, masterclasses, competitions and discounted cocktails across 20 of the city’s coolest bars.
One of the major events celebrates one of the city's cocktail pioneers. Keko Moku arrived in the Northern Quarter nearly 10 years ago, so to mark the tiki milestone on Tuesday, September 5 the original quartet of barmen are reassembling to recreate a list of Keko Moku classics from the opening menu. Lyndon Higginson (above), who left KM to set up The Liars Group, is joined at one of his current bars, The Liars Lounge, Cane & Grain, by Ian Melville, Rich Marshall and Rob Worsley from 9pm until 2am. £5 cocktails all night with a MLC wristband.
Plus in the same venue’s Science & Industry bar on Thursday, September 7 between 2p-4pm there’s An Afternoon with Employees Only NYC, with Bathtub gin. It offers the chance to listen to the Ulysses Vidal, the legendary Big Apple bar’s manager. (Wristband only event).
One of the most fascinating MLC events sees Cottonopolis hosting a Nikka Japanese Whisky tasting matched with a 5-course Omakase menu on Sunday, October 10. Expect pairings of salmon sashimi with Nikka Coffey Grain, wagyu rib-eye tataki with Yoichi Single Malt, white Chocolate and matcha delice with The Nikka 12 Year. Guests will end the evening with a rare Yoichi 10 Year.
The event will start at 6pm and tickets are £25. Book here. There’s a slo a range of Nikka-inspred cocktails at £5 for wristband owners.
Other amazing events include a Multisensory Mystery Tour with Diplomatico; a tiki masterclass with renowned London bar Mahiki; an al fresco terrace party with Tanqueray; and a local legends open mic night with El Dorado.
Festival hubs are Crazy Pedros off Bridge Street and Science and Industry at Cane and Grain, which will act as the wristband exchange and information point, as well as hosting a series of special events.
Participating brands include: Portobello Road Gin, Ocho Tequila, Tanqueray, Campari, Ciroc, Bacardi, Blackwell, Diplomatico, Santa Theresa, Licor 43, Hudson Whiskey, Haig Clubman, Chase Distillery, Heaven Hill, Thomas Dakin, Luxardo and Cazcabel with more to be announced.
Participating venues include: The Alchemist, Mojo, The Botanist, The Brotherhood of Pursuits and Pastimes, The Cosy Club, Favelas Bar and Cantina, Hold Fast; Kosmonaut, The Living Room, Crazy Pedros (city centre and NQ, Science and Industry, Sugar Rays, Liquor Store, Rosylee, Hula, The Fitzgerald, Tusk, Liars Club and Blackdog Ballroom with more to be announced.
Each bar will team up with one of the world’s finest spirit brands to create a unique menu of £5 discounted cocktails and host events exclusively for wristband holders.
To gain access to events and to purchase cocktails at the discounted price of £5. Available through Eventbrite, the wristbands cost £10 with half price concessions for drinks/hospitality industry workers, NHS employees and students.