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The Bay Horse

Bars and pubs, Pubs
4 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
(2user reviews)
The Bay Horse, Manchester,

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

There's more to this Northern Quarter boozer than the food and drink. Venture downstairs for gigs, open mic nights and exhibitions

From the original Georgian exterior you could be mistaken for thinking that this pub will be a dark and dank old thing, but you'd be very wrong. With a lively, contemporary feel – colourful sofas, big art work – this welcoming and friendly pub offers a lot more than just a decent selection of drinks and food with a homemade touch (the pies are delicious).  

What makes The Bay Horse special is what else it offers. The downstairs pool room doubles as an event space so there are always new exhibitions, open mic nights and basement gigs taking place. Consequently it feels very much like somewhere actively supporting fresh local talent.

A gentle, sensible door policy helps add to the feel that the Bay Horse isn't really putting a hoof wrong.

By: Rob Martin



Address: 35-37 Thomas Street
Northern Quarter
M4 1NA

Users say (2)

5 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
2 people listening

Just as soon as you think you know all of the bars in the Northern Quarter, you overhear someone on the Met talking about the Bay Horse.

I chuckled to myself thinking I’ve been going in there occasionally for years, and felt silent smugness that I had discovered the small but perfectly formed smoking garden in a time where VHS tapes were used.

So imagine my astonishment when I walked into the venue last week to be greeted with a completely revamped, beautifully designed Bay Horse, which has galloped into 2017, shedding it’s slightly 90’s style reigns.

The attention to detail in the bar and dining room is superb, so it’s no surprise that it’s the same team behind the Black Dog Ballroom and Liar’s Club are the ones who have relaunched the Bay Horse for a new generation.

This is very much a pub, dark contemporary colours, and some beautiful wood panelling, which apparently came from the (sadly now derelict) Trafford Park Hotel.  Minton tiles, and a warm welcome with staff who really want to make a good impression complete the nice vibes. 

If you have friends who have arrived wide-eyed at Piccadilly from points South, who ask for a traditional Manchester pub, then you have the choice of taking them to the Unicorn on Church Street, or to the Bay Horse – which has a more open door policy to beards and waxed moustaches.

Happily, local beers such as Cloudwater and Runaway have a solid presence on the pumps – there are bottles galore from Ancoats to Australia.   There is also an extensive and dazzling selection of spirits.

The menu reflects the ambition of the venue to become a pub, as opposed to a bar – vegan finger food this is not.  The kitchen contains a state of the art rotisserie where they roast delicious joints of beef and pork, alongside locally sourced chicken from Bury.

The small plates are a joy – sausage with mash and gravy, faggots and spiced sausage ragu, ox cheek, as well as imaginative sandwiches.

This strong new (old) challenger is a very welcome addition in an area already packed with with some great venues.

There's more to the Bay Horse than meets the eye, from the basement room complete with pool tables to one of the Northern Quarter's most well hidden beer gardens.