It’s time to ditch the Neros, the Costas and the Starbucks and explore a little more of what Manchester has to offer. It’s no myth that Manchester is teeming with independent coffee houses, and with so many to choose from, We’ve selected some of our favourites which couple as perfect study spaces. Thinking of studying in the library? Think again.
Our first stop on this ‘Coffee Crawl’ was Chapter One Books in the Northern Quarter. An independent coffeehouse and bookstore, it offers a quirky medley of all things abstract. Part of the interior is lined with bookshelves and dim lanterns, which reminded me of an old library; the ideal place to study.
It’s clear old meets new in this coffee shop.
A small exhibition of David LaChapelle’s contemporary Utopian art can be found. His works seem to have inspired a large part of the interior as one casts their eye around the colourful clash of flowers, baubles and twinkling fairy lights.
The friendly staff add to the pleasant atmosphere and it’s evident that the coffeehouse appeals to many different people. Come here to chat on the large comfy sofas, enjoy board games teamed with homemade cake and artisan coffee, or relax with the origami and mindfulness books on display. We love this place; there’s always something to look at and you’ll never get bored.
Tuesday nights in Chapter One Books one can attend a ‘Creative Writing Group’ and there’s no doubt it’s a success. The gentle soul music and the indoor water fountain are enough to get anyone’s creative spirit flowing.
You don’t have to walk very far to find another quirky spot in NQ. Fig and Sparrow is another all-time fave. But next we branched out a little, heading over to to Pot Kettle Black in the Barton Arcade on Deansgate.
Priding themselves in speciality coffee and brunch, PKB had an easy, relaxed vibe. We loved the Express Hatch, perfect for grabbing an on-the-go coffee.
With heart shaped cappuccinos was served on a silver trays with a chocolate wafer, they score 10/10 for aesthetics. If it hadn’t have been a Sunday morning when we visited, we might have opted for a ‘Nutella Martini’, one of the many artisan cocktails expertly concocted.
Situated in the very cool and very Victorian Arcade, the roof is one of its best aesthetic features. Sophistication with a touch of edginess is key in Pot Kettle Black. We believe that studying in creative surroundings takes the edge off the monotony, so PKB is the ideal place to head to if you’re with us.
Last stop on the ‘Coffee Crawl’ was Hatch. It’s a student hub on Oxford Road, tucked under the Mancunian Way. The pastel coloured shipping containers offer a quirky setting to revise, but you can always opt for sitting outside to soak up the rare Manchester sunshine.
Takk Coffee MCR are the providers for Hatch. Nordic inspired coffee house, Takk is also situated in the Northern Quarter and have recently opened another location on Oxford Road. Their aim is to provide the community with a place to work, chat and dream up big ideas. Strings of bulb fairy lights over the courtyard add to the chilled ambience.
However, Hatch is so much more than just a place to grab a coffee and some street food from the stalls. Bursting with local culture, you’ll find art for sale from local artists and they regularly host gigs from local musicians and resident DJs.
It’s hard to describe what Hatch really is. A creative pop-up concept of all varieties – food, coffee, art. Situated perfectly in the city, the multipurpose aspect to the venue renders it the ideal leisure space to go either with friends or alone.
For us, Hatch epitomises the student culture in Manchester; which is exactly what we set out to discover and enjoy.
It’s time to ditch the corporate coffee houses and enjoy the quirkiness of Mancunian’s own.