The latest addition to the Manchester city centre beer scene is Allotment on Dale St. Now tipping a hat to the craft beer movement/phenomenon/hype (delete at will) has long been de rigueur for any self-respecting new opening, but some are more serious contenders than others. For a long time installing a handpull was a badge of intent and although that isn’t now necessarily the case, it has to be said that only Brewdog have had the chutzpah to pull that strategy off successfully. For a good example of close-but-no-cigar, one only has to look at the recently opened Cane and Grain on Thomas Street. A nice enough spot that ticks some template boxes: quirky, exciting menu, exciting cocktails etc. And someone presumably thought they’d better have a go at craft beer as well. Que Meantime, Camden and six supposed American beers. I say supposedly as the likes of Sam Adams and Shipyard are faux craft at best and shouldn’t be listed as USA beers when they aren’t brewed there. For the record, the Shipyard was £5 a pint; flat and watery.
Cane & Grain
It's an allotment
An allotment with a bar
Allotment, on the other hand, could be a genuine contender. Given the golden proviso, as always, of if it can generate the business. It’s on the site of one of Manchester’s oldest pubs: the Haunch of Venison (you don’t see many called that now) although I only knew it when it was called Nickleby’s and sold Boddingtons. Nicklebys closed on the 1990s and the pub became a clothes importer. Now it’s part of the N4 regenration and potentially links a pub crawl of the Soup Kitchen, Pie and Ale, Kosmonaut and Port Street Beer House. The look is quintessentially English (the clue is in the name) as is the food. More importantly is that there are four cask beers on. I was told that there will be a Lancashire ‘Red Rose’ theme to the beers generally, but non-Lancastrian Robinsons was guesting on this occasion. Worth keeping an eye on.

Allotment is open Sun-Weds 12-midnight, Thursday until 1am and weekends until 2am. 


John Clarke said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Clarke said…
Close-but-no-cigar"? What? Is this an expression you youngsters use?

Tyson said…

Yes. Well, youngsters from the 1950s anyway.
RedNev said…
You paid £5 a pint? I think it's time someone set up a blog called Cooking Bitter.

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