The Tiger Lounge

It has been quite a while fellow drinkers that I have been out and had anything to write about. We go for quality over quantity here which, depending how the mood takes us, is also how we like our alcohol.

I started off the evening by having a EPA(English pale ale) with my dinner which was ok. If I was out I’d use it as a standard inbetweener kind of drink rather than something I would enjoy but you know beggars can’t be choosers.

We had been invited to a friends leaving do at the Tiger Lounge in Manchester and interestingly, no one from my close drinking fraternity had ever been. Which is odd because we have been to most places. What put us off, I think, is that it kind of looks like a strip club from the outside(my girlfriend disagrees with this).

Tigers are big pussies.

Tigers are big pussies.

It’s kind of a bar pretending to be a club. You don’t have to pay in until later though which means you can get in early and take advantage of the two cocktails for £5 offer which lasts until around 11. We arrived around 9 and it was still very quiet. Descending down the stairs into the gloom it smelled a bit but once you got used to that it was quite nice. It has seating all around the outside of the room with a few little cubbies off the main room and a small dance floor in the middle. It was quite bright as well so I could see where I was going.

There was a good range of cocktails on the 2 for a fiver menu like Mai Tai, Long Island ice tea, White Russian, cosmopolitan. I had two Tequila Sunrises, I like tequila sunrise. I like that it’s thicker at the bottom. Normally on these deals you get mainly juice but this blew my head off, it was the real thing there was a similar reaction from my fellow drinkers as well.

tequilasunriseposter

They had San Miguel and Carling on the bar plus Guinness, I think they had Rekorderlig as well but my memory and head are a little hazy this morning so I’m not entirely trust worthy. After 4 tequila sunrises I was nicely inebriated. The music was excellent, all Motown, blues and funk record which we really enjoyed but we were still able to talk making this a good night and a good bar/club.

However the problem comes when the cocktail deal runs out and each cocktail is around £4.50 which makes the price of your evening rocket up past 11. To finish my friend bought a straight double vodka for something like £4.70 I’m not a fan of vodka but that stuff was rough… Now we know how the cocktails can be so cheap.

We were flagging at this point so instead of going home as a compromise we went to the old favourite the Wetherspoons Waterhouse which is next door. We all know it’s pretty cheap in there and we had one more round. There is a debate raging about what to drink after cocktails, wine doesn’t mix, ale is definitely too heavy, shorts are good if you can drink some more sweet stuff but I went with a bottled lager. Sticking with the tequila theme of the evening I went with a Desperado which is Tequila beer and I’ve been OK today so the mix can’t have been too bad.

Tequila flavoured beer. What could go wrong?

Tequila flavoured beer. What could go wrong?

Then we got turfed out by a man who sounded like he was the unwilling collaborator in a prison escape movie and the police are about to show up as he told us ‘you have to leave’. So we did.

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Black Dogs and Englishmen

I went out for a friends birthday on Saturday and unusually I deceided to drink lager. I had a couple of stubbies before we went out and decided that I’d stay on lager to avoid mixing the fizziness of lager with ale.

Let me say now I have decided that lager does not agree with me. It’s not that I’m an ale buff and I think lager is bad and the mark of the devil, it’s more that it doesn’t suit me. Like putting diesel in a petrol engine, it fucks everything up.

tuborg

So I had the stubbies then we went to Wetherspoons as a special stage on the way to the main event. At this point I had Tuborg which is pretty nice… for a lager. Lagers taste much of a sameness to me. The thing is I can tell a high quality one from a low budget hangover juice but the difference is much more subtle than ale. So I think Tuborg is pretty much in the middle of the road, though it’s very fizzy. So I had a desperado for my next drink. Which if you haven’t tried it is great stuff, it’s tequila flavoured beer! You can only get it bottled but it’s very refreshing and not too fizzy. Wetherspoons was good ‘n’ cheap as usual and that’s all I can say on that one, though I regret not getting some ale.

the waterhouse

desperado

We then moved on to the Garret which was the staging area for the birthday party. It has to be one of the ugliest pubs in Manchester. The Garret is one of those pubs that was cool when you were 18. It always seems to be too busy, there’s no ale which is why I hadn’t bothered with any all night. Despite how it looks it isn’t cheap either with most lagers being well over the £3 mark, well over…

This was the best picture I could find it's like the photographer was trying to avoid showing it in all it's grim glory.

This was the best picture I could find it’s like the photographer was trying to avoid showing it in all it’s grim glory.

The best thing you can get in there are the £8 pitchers of cocktail and it keeps all the dicks out of the good pubs, like some sort of knobhead magnet. I had kronenburg though, it’s definitely a lager… In hindsight I should have moved on to cocktails, this is where the headache started to develop. The other problem with the Garret is it’s next to 5th Avenue so you get studenty people pre-drinking which is never pretty plus the weird old guys who watch all the girls and try to re-live their 20’s. It’s pretty obvious they don’t belong, you can see their beer bellies.

Yup it's lager...

Yup it’s lager…

It’s very cramped in there as well when it gets busy. Plus we’ve been kicked out before when some bitch claimed my friend had pushed her in the toilets and she was ‘friends’ with the managers. So yeah maybe I don’t like the Garret there’s nothing to drink the people in there are usually idiots and the music to loud which is the final nail in the coffin because what’s the point of being in the pub when you can’t talk to people, not that you’d want to talk to anyone in there. Also there are TVs on the wall it’s like all my pet hates rolled into one. No-ones watching them, turn them off!

Black-Dog-Ballroom-New-Wakefield-Street-e1353797654879-472x264

This is where we move to the new Blackdog Ballroom off Oxford Road near the Thirsty Scholar and Font. I thought this was just going to be the usual club style, pay to get in, be forced to sit in a loud room while other people dance and I don’t. It wasn’t like that at all, there are three levels a top bar, a lower bar and a club level below. We didn’t have to pay in which is always good in my book, this became interesting when we could sit comfortably upstairs and talk without loud music, in a club! It was nice I have to say but again it was a bit pricey. £3.70 for a pint of Tuborg though it came in an actual glass, in a club! It’s like they trust you or something.

We lost the birthday girl in a haze of alcohol and our party of four split the drinkers stayed upstairs and the dancers went downstairs and for one I actually had a good time in a club. It was comfortable, not too loud and had a bit of atmosphere. There are big comfy sofas and we availed ourselves on these whilst we drank and waited for our dancing friends. I should now mention they had cocktails as well, these were £6 each so not the cheapest but then again unlike most clubs it was a comfortable place to drink. So you know I’m all for it. There were loads of pool tables as well which were busy but definitely a nice touch. We would have been better meeting in there and just moving downstairs when we felt like it instead of suffering through the Garrett.

Now normally this is where these reviews end but my hangover the next day after drinking lager (which I don’t normally drink) gets special mention. It was like the tiny men inside my head were all on pogo sticks trying to escape by hitting their heads against my skull. So it was impressive to say the least. So to sum up, lager bad for me, I don’t like the Garret and I found a club that I like. It was an interesting weekend.

The Cocktail Bar

I found myself in an very fancy cocktail bar last weekend, through no fault of my own I have to say because it was a friends birthday. I like cocktails but the places in which they are served are usually some of the worst places to actually socialise. The Magic bar in the Printworks was the best cocktail bar I’ve ever been to, it was a travesty it was closed. Shame on you Printworks!

The bar Corridor off Chapel street in Manchester is tucked into an alley. As I arrived one of those older guys who wear leather jackets and think it makes them look twenty years younger was stood smoking in the doorway, now don’t get me wrong that’s just an observation about a specific kind of leather jacket wearing older man, not all of them. Anyway he was smoking in front of the door, so I walked up and said in a polite way ‘Is this is way in?’, his response back was ‘Not tonight mate’. I was already not really wanting to go out for reasons that I can’t remember, it might have been drinking. I hate having to choke comebacks away so the grimace as I went past him was probably revealing. I hadn’t yet had my quota of intoxicants to find this funny. I really wanted to say ‘I didn’t know there was a comedian on tonight’ but that probably wouldn’t have gone down well. These things always put me in a bad mood, there is a serious gap between wit and what these people peddle.

Saturday nights really attract dicks and I do tend to avoid going out if I can, they just get too overcrowded. Busy bars are one thing but overcrowded are another but as I said it was someones birthday so i went out hoping it would be OK. I need to stop complaining I’m setting the wrong tone, drinking is pleasurable (honest). At least it was happy hour, but I didn’t know that so I avoided the expensive cocktails and bought a Peroni (bottle) for £3.50 that’s nearly £1 per 100ml of beer, we need bigger bottles people! I then proceeded to shout at my friends over the music which was well past eleven on the volume scale. Music is great and the venue was great but it was just drowning out the conversation. No-ones dancing guys, there isn’t room to dance, we’re talking, its a cardinal bar sin, mark my words it will lead to the death of conversation and everyone will just text each other from home. All my fellow drinkers agreed we just wanted to chat and ended up leaving hoarse, though I did have an excellent tequila cocktail called a dusk till dawn only £4 in the happy hours instead of £7.50 the happy hour is Classic & Twisted cocktails for £4 served all night Monday & Tuesday, 5pm to 8pm Wednesday to Friday and 7pm to 10pm on a Saturday and Sunday. Yay. I really liked Corridor and will be going back for more excellent cocktails.

In the end though there was no plan and we couldn’t be bothered with the twat festival that is Manchester on a Saturday night so we ended up where everyone else seemed to have ended up which was a Wetherspoons, I’m putting it out there right now, I think Wetherspoons are great. There was music but it was elsewhere the booze is cheap and if you’re an ale drinker (I am) it’s great quality. The only problem with them is everyone else seems to have worked out the same thing and the place was packed at least 3 people deep all the way along and it’s a massive bar probably the biggest in Manchester. I had a few pints of the standard abbot ale, not my favorite but drinkable and something I could see at the bar though the huge fat women stood in front of me drinking WKDs. i think it’s fair to say it isn’t a classy venue but everyone is friendly. All in all, night recovered.