Cocktails at Store Street Exchange, Manchester

Back to school, back to work, back to reality this week. 

I’ve had a fantastic week off for my birthday (you may have noticed I’ve been a bit quiet), but I’m back and everything is back to normal. Which means I may need another date like this in my diary this week. 

This visit to Store Street was punctuated by one of those days. Truthfully, a few of them. In quick succession. Things not going right, people not doing what I needed them to do. Things just not quite right. 

It called for a cocktail or two. 

So I grabbed a friend, and we settled in to put the world to rights a little bit. A couple of hours, a couple of comfy chairs, some cocktails and enough grumbling, solution seeking and swearing to keep us on an even keel for a few more days. It’s what drinks after work are all about, right?

As well as a good beer selection, including those from local brewery Brightside, the wine selection at Store Street isn’t too shabby (I may have become a fan of the French Chardonnay on the menu), and nor is the cocktail list. And with offers like 2 G&Ts and 3 nibbles from their Light Bites menu for £18, their offers are worth checking out too.

In the mood for something sharp and fizzy, my first cocktail was the Fizzy Margarita – El Jimador Blanco Tequila, Cointreau, lime, gomme and fizz. A Margarita is one of my favourite drinks for after work – there’s something about the sharpness that just washes the day away somehow. That said, I’d never had it with a fizz top, but it works. The fizz is gentle on the tongue, but it gives it an almost sherbetty quality, this is one I’ll happily revisit. 

My date too fancied something fizzy, so opted for the Three 75 – The French 75 featuring Manchester Three Rivers Gin. A little sharpness from the lemon, a little juniper backbone from the gin and fizzy on the tongue.

Both accompanied with a selection of nibbles from the menu – just enough to stop our tummies grumbling, but still have room for dinner when we got home.  Squid with a garlic laden aioli, buffalo chicken wings, and toasted foccacia with oil and vinegar. 


Feeling less cross with the world, there was still time for one more cocktail before home. For me a Cucumber Gimlet
– Thomas Dakin Gin, cucumber, lime juice, gomme and a lemonade top. Refreshing, light and clean, it was a veritable palate cleanser, whilst my date went a little heavier, with a Rob Roy – Famous Grouse, Martini Rosso and Angostura Bitters. 

Finished off with cocktail cherries, the Rob Roy was a little warmer and oakier than my own selection, but suited her down to the ground, and both helped us finish putting the world to rights.  

Whilst the cocktails in Store Street may feel a little pricier than some (it is a hotel bar after all), they are really rather good, and it’s always worth keeping an eye out for their regular offers. You might just find a deal that suits you and your next drinks after work situation. 


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