The excellent Manchester Camra rag "Opening Times" has long extolled the virtues of the pubs and bars in Chorlton, but on our trips to Manchester we have never managed to get there and to be honest, we didn't really know where Chorlton was.
An opportunity to find out arose last week, as Mallinsons were invited to Oddest to present a meet the brewer evening. Oddest is the third of a chain of cafe bars, the other two being Odd and Odder in central Manchester (an expansion restricting choice of name maybe?).
Anyone remembering New Labour's vision of a continental cafe culture in the UK will see that embraced in these bars. Outside, all weather seating areas are spread across wide pavements and an excellent internal layout provide for drinkers and diners (food is an important part of Oddest).
There are six handpumps, always including a mild and a stout, continental draughts, and lots of wine, and on the evening we were there they did sell a lot of wine.
Who came to see the girls? Back to "Opening Times" again, the local Camra branch turned out in force to support the evening - including a brewer from Marble. Beer and the future of pubs and bars were much discussed and, of course, pints of Mallinsons supped with all six pumps dedicated to our favourite brewery, on what was a cracking evening.
Number 85 and 86 buses take you to Chorlton in about 25 minutes from Piccadilly Gardens (85 drops you right outside Oddest), and even as I write it is possible that the new tram link to Chorlton may be open, with the station just yards from Oddest.
Many thanks to the bar staff, manageress and local camra for a great night, we shall endeavour to explore more of what Chorlton has to offer on our next vist to Manchester.