We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Nice bars/pubs

York, UK
Level Contributor
21 posts
8 reviews
Save Topic
Nice bars/pubs

Hi all

Coming over from York with the girlfriend in October for her birthday for a couple of nights. We're staying at Base2Stay on Seel Street, arriving around 7pm on a Sunday night.

Can anyone recommend some nice bars/pubs nearby (or up to a 20 min walk away)? We're both late 20s, enjoy a good drink and a bit of atmosphere but nowhere packed with posers, music booming and paying £5+ for a pint! If there's any unusual/interesting real-ale type pubs of note I'd be pleased to hear of them!

Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
15,474 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Nice bars/pubs

Best real ale pub in Liverpool is the Dispensary on Renshaw Street. Ignore the negative reviews of the place on this site - some people have a problem with Dave the landlord!

Around the corner from the Dispensary is the Roscoe Head on Roscoe Street, and up from there is the Fly In The Loaf on Hardman Street. Opposite the Fly and along Pilgrim Street, then up Rice Street is Ye Cracke, and on the other side of Hope Street is the Belvedere.

All of these are great real ale pubs with their own unique atmosphere.

On the other side of the city centre on Dale Street you find more great real pubs - Thomas Rigbys (an Okells pub like the Fly) and further along is the Vernon Arms, then the Excelsior, and finally the Ship & Mitre.

The S&M always has 12 ales on tap, but recently I've gone off the place as all 12 ales are always the same bog-standard bitters around the 4% abv mark.

And you can't visit Liverpool without visiting the Baltic Fleet on Wapping, opposite the Echo Arena and Albert Dock. It's well worth the short walk to sample the excellent Wapping Brewery beer they sell - the Baltic Fleet is Liverpools only brewpub and the Wapping Brewery is housed in the pubs cellar.

Edited: 21 September 2013, 16:51
Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
15,474 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Nice bars/pubs

P.S. and they have free wifi at the Baltic Fleet.

I'm here right now sat outside having a pint of Wapping Stout, and I can't decide whether this is now the best real ale pub in Liverpool or the Dispensary.

Let's make then =1st then. ;-)

Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
15,474 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Nice bars/pubs

I should have mentioned that all of the pubs I mentioned above are within a 20 minute walk from Base2Stay on Seel Street.

You might find this "Real Ale Liverpool" map useful. ;-)

visitliverpool.com/xsdbimgs/…20Liverpool.pdf

It's a PDF doc, but you can also get a copy of the actual map in most of the real ale pubs.

I forgot to mention Liverpool One Bridewell which isn't actually on the map. It's in a old bridewell and it still has the original cells where you can sit and eat/drink. There's a nice outside terrace too for when the weather is nice. Details here:

www.liverpoolonebridewell.com/location.html

Edited: 22 September 2013, 12:14
Little Sutton...
Level Contributor
2,186 posts
139 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Nice bars/pubs

Some great suggestions there,I'll add the Beehive to the list although it's close proximity to Liverpool One means it & the area can be a bit manic at times!

Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
15,474 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Nice bars/pubs

You might even like the Kazimier Garden - but only if the weather is nice as it's an outdoor bar.

But I seem to remember it closed for the Autumn/Winter at the end of September:

They sell real ale, craft beers, food and often have live bands and DJ's.

The entrance is directly opposite Base2Stay on Seel Street:

http://www.thekazimier.co.uk/garden/

And around the corner from Seel Street on Slater Street is Mello Mello. It's a vegetarian cafe that sells real ale, craft beers etc and also has live music.

http://mellomello.co.uk/

P.S. the best bit of advice I can give you is to avoid the Bierkeller. ;-)

Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
763 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Nice bars/pubs

I might have known Matt would have been on to this thread in a shot with some top recommendations. I will add a few suggestions of my own though:

The Grapes (on the corner of Roscoe Street and Knight Street) is on the same street as The Roscoe Head and is just round the corner from Ye Cracke. Not only do they have a good selection of real ales but it is a very friendly place with a relaxed atmosphere. They also often have live music.

The Caledonia on Catharine Street is a community pub with a similar set up but is a bit bigger and does food as well.

Bier is probably more of a venue for international beers (good quality Czech, German, Belgian etc. as opposed to Budweiser, Kronenbourg and Carlsberg mind!) but does also sell real ales. It may seem a bit hipster-ish but it does seem devoid of the pretention usually associated with such places.

If you do fancy venturing a bit further afield, Peter Kavanagh's on Back Egerton Street, just off Catharine Street is heading out of town but I would think (providing you are not slow walkers!) it would just about fit in your 20 minute radius and is definitely an interesting place with a good atmosphere which serves some good ales usually.

The Lion Tavern on Tithebarn Street is another gem which may be a bit of a walk from where you are staying but again no more than 20 minutes. They offer a very good whisky selection in addition to their real ale offering.

The Clove Hitch and the Philharmonic on Hope Street are two other suggestions I would make. The latter isn't particularly cheap but worthy of a visit for the interior and does get rather busy so the atmosphere is usually good.

The Hub on Hanover Street may be a bit sanitised for what you are looking for and it's not a traditional pub but it does have a good selection of real ale and can get quite busy without being uncomfortable.

The Shipping Forecast is close to your accommodation and definitely ticks the boxes regarding interesting pubs with good beer selection, however, depending when you decide to visit it may fall down on the posers front and the entrance policy/attitude of the door staff of a weekend night-time is baffling at times and can often leave a lot to be desired. It is also not very cheap but I doubt you'd be paying £5 a pint even there!

Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
15,474 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Nice bars/pubs

I was going to suggest the Grapes but they have such bizarre opening hours - the last 3 or 4 times I've passed there it's been closed. But when it's open it's a great pub, usually with 6 or 7 real ales on.

The OP has probably picked a good time to visit, i.e. from Sunday onwards for a couple of nights. The city centre will definitely be a lot quieter than it is on Fridays and Saturdays; well, as long as you avoid the pubs on Mount Pleasant and Lime Street, especially the Vines! And Mathew Street can still be very manic on Sunday evening so avoid there, unless you want to get caught up with those left standing from hen and stag parties etc!

P.S. and don't confuse the Grapes on Roscoe Street with the one on Mathew Street. You'll know you've stumbled into the wrong Grapes, first of all because it's along from the Cavern, secondly because they have no real ale, and thirdly because it smells of cat pee! :-p

Edited: 23 September 2013, 11:18
Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
15,474 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Nice bars/pubs

P.S. here's the Bier website. It's difficult to find if you don't know the city; in fact most people who live here probably don't know it exists!

urban-gastro-pubs.co.uk/enter/…

Liverpool, United...
Destination Expert
for Liverpool
Level Contributor
763 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Nice bars/pubs

I know the Grapes was closed for a month or two earlier in the year - some technicalities over the licence was what I heard so admittedly not too much detail there! Not sure if that was when you went past and it was closed? It could easily be squeezed in between the Roscoe Head and Ye Cracke, Belvedere or one of the pubs further up Hope Street so not a lot lost if it is closed for whatever reason!

York, UK
Level Contributor
21 posts
8 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Nice bars/pubs

Cheers guys, I was expecting maybe a couple of suggestions but your advice is much appreciated, and that map will be printed out and be going in my pocket!

I think I may have actually been in the Baltic Fleet before, do they sell sweets behind the bar (!)...? Or am I thinking of somewhere completely different...?