First dates give dating a bad reputation. Get past the horror of the opening rendezvous, though, and you’re onto a pretty good formula: two people finding something ace to do. People in relationships should go on more dates.
Whether you’re heading out with your dearly beloved, or meeting a stranger whose face you’ve only ever seen online, the dilemmas remain the same, however: what to wear, what to do and how it’ll go. While we can’t help much with the first and last, when it comes to what to do, we’ve got it covered. So here’s a bunch of different ideas for date places in Manchester – and the rest is up to you. Good night, and good luck.
Here are our picks
Corridor Bar, 6 Barlow's Croft, Salford, Greater Manchester, M3 5DY - Visit now
Corridor Bar in Salford will definitely win you off-the-radar points… Tucked away down a Salford back alley and with little in the way of a sign, Corridor Bar is a challenge to find, but it’s also worth it. The ultimate bartender’s bar, the staff here really know what they’re doing when it comes to cocktails. Take a seat and the excellent libations will smooth the date along.
Dog Bowl, Arch 57, Whitworth St West, Manchester, M1 5WW - Visit now
Situated beneath the railway tracks on Whitworth St West, Dog Bowl is a far cry from your average bowling alley. Open till late, this neon-lit venue marries suave cocktails with tenpin pleasure across five full length lanes. Food-wise, think Tex-Mex, with burgers, fajitas, wings and slow cooked meat. We recommend going early to mid-week, as things can get a little rowdy at the weekends. Alternatively, there’s the All Star Lanes at the Great Northern Warehouse.
Ginger’s Comfort Emporium, Afflecks Palace, Oldham street / Church Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M4 1PW - Visit now
As all teetotallers know, taking liquor out of the courting process doesn’t necessarily mean you take the spirit out of it. You can learn a lot about someone from their taste in ice cream: if, of all the adventurous flavours on offer at Ginger’s Comfort Emporium, your date goes for vanilla – well, that tells you something. Equally, Ginger’s more glorious desserts are perfect for sharing (we recommend the French Elvis – French toast filled with salted caramel and peanut butter ice cream, Skippy peanut butter, fresh banana and raspberry sauce).
King Street Tavern, 10 Booth Street, Manchester, M2 4AW - Visit now
King Street Townhouse is one of Manchester’s more recent boutique hotels, along with a handful of other branches across the North West. King Street Tavern is the attached bar and restaurant, an elegant-looking room full of traditional design touches. It’s all red leather seating, gleaming white tablecloths and elaborate lighting, perfect for that romantic night out.
TwentyTwentyTwo (2022NQ), 20-22 Dale Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 1EZ - Visit now
Late night ping-pong and inspiring art work make Twenty Twenty Two the Shangri-la for those seeking something different to the usual date formula. This underground bar is a chilled out alternative to the bustling Northern Quarter bars above and, if you’re shy, it’s the perfect venue for breaking the ice with a little friendly competition.
– Evangeline Katz