Whether it’s a treat for yourself, or planning a treat for someone else, birthdays can be a bit of a challenge. Picking something that will suit most people if not everyone, food, drinks, something to do.
So after some pondering, and maybe some pre-emptive planning for my next birthday (not confirming or denying), I’ve come up with five suggestions for Manchester birthday treats.
I’m perhaps starting with one of the most varied options. Albert’s Schloss isn’t just cosy dining, and pretzels, it hosts events every night of the week. From burlesque and the delights of Kunst Kabaret, or if you want to bounce your night away at the weekend with live bands and artists, or slow it right down with their Sunday roast selection, they have something for all tastes. Pick your day of the week and head over for dinner, followed by all the birthday entertainment you can shake your sequins at.
Grab a bunch of friends, and book into Beastro. Whether you choose something from their menu, or contact them in advance for something a little more special, sometimes keeping it simple is the way to go. Then nobody is grumbling about not wanting to join in with go karting, or feign injury to avoid bowling. I admit, I may be slightly biased, having booked a birthday with them in the past already, but if you want good food, and great service, whether it’s for ten people or forty, these are your people.
You booked the theatre tickets, or treated yourself to the cinema, but where to go for food and drink beforehand? HOME have their own restaurant on the first floor, and options for even the fussiest of diners. They have a great wine selection, some deliciously local beers and gins, plus lots of soft drink choices for the non-drinkers. Add to that pizza, fried chicken and dough balls and it’s a great casual dining spot for pre or post viewing.
Manchester Craft & Design Centre
Treat the birthday bunny to a craft session of their choice, or spend your day browsing and meeting local artists. The Manchester Craft & Design Centre has been a fixture of the Northern Quarter since 1982, providing exhibitions space and workshop for a plethora of artists. Paper craft, textiles, canvas art or jewellery, you can pop in to browse and shop, meet the artists and maybe enjoy a little lunch at the café, or book onto one of the workshops hosted by the artists themselves. Learn how to paint with watercolours, make jewellery, screen printing, calligraphy… There’ something for the creative in you.
Afternoon tea – it’s the most indulgent of treats, and why not do it at one of my favourite cake-laden haunts. Book in for an afternoon of cakes, nibbles, and sugary sweet treats, served with one of their eighteen different varieties of tea, or take it a step further with a glass of fizz or one of their specially curated vintage cocktails. Though of course, it may end with the usual scone related debate – jam first or cream?