Natty wines and good times guaranteed.
Ok, so natural wines have been around for quite some time (re-emerging since around the 60s, to be precise), but over the past year alone they’ve been rapidly growing in popularity – particularly among the younger generation of winemakers. Now, fast-forwarding to 2021, natty wines have become the new craft beer of sorts, gaining a huge fanbase of wine lovers who have grown to appreciate the more personal approach applied to each and every bottle.
Taking production way back to how it all began, the natural wine method foregoes mass production, opting for low intervention and a more human approach – one which sacks off the use of pesticides or herbicides in a bid to make tasty wines with no additives. The result is a wine that’s better for you, just as delicious (sometimes, even more so!) and much more rewarding to drink with the knowledge of where it came from. That’s not, however, to say that it’s hangover-free (unfortunately), and those who do indulge can definitely expect their usual wine hangover the next day. Trust me though, it’ll be worth it. Here’s our pick of the best natural wine bars right here in Manchester.
1. Wolf at the Door
Long championing natty wines of all varieties, Wolf at the Door is the perfect place to try something new in the beverage department. Serving both by the glass and by the bottle, WATD has an ever-rotating and expanding natural wine offering, and trust us when we say, they really know how to source the good stuff. Expect wines from around the globe, reds, whites, oranges and more, and something to suit every palate. Pair ’em with a few £1 Bao buns and you’re onto a proper winner. Wolf at the Door, 30-32 Thomas St, M4 1ER.
2. Another Heart to Feed
Manchester’s Australian-inspired cafe is so much more than just another brunch spot. Serving brunch until 4pm, the venue transforms into a lovely little wine bar by night, specialising in a wide selection of delicious natural wines. To accompany, guests can nibble on charcuterie, cheeses and other wine-worthy snacks, while discovering their array of reds, orange, whites, rosés and sparkling wines – with both street seating and indoor seating to take advantage of. Another Heart To Feed, 10 Hilton St, M1 1JF.
A minimalistic, high-end venue tucked away in the cool neighbourhood of Ancoats, Erst puts their collection of natural wines at the centre of everything they do, combining them with delicious, seasonal small plates to enjoy while catching up with new and old friends alike. Every glass they serve is au naturelle, with upmarket dishes such as sea bass crudo, grilled pork collar and more to accompany. Erst, 9 Murray St, Ancoats, M4 6HS.
One of the city’s finest wine bars, Salut is home to an impressive 400+ bottles, with a mix of both natural and ‘normal’ wines on offer. From the introductory bottles to the vinos that fully-fledged natural wine fans will love, Salut has a little something for everyone, and their knowledgeable team can help point newbies in the right direction. Alongside their many, many bottles, guests can fill up on Mediterranean small plates – including charcuterie, cheeses, bread, hummus and more. Salut Wines, 11 Cooper St, M2 2FW.
5. Isca Wines
Huge advocates for all things natural and organic, Isca Wines is well-loved in Levenshulme – so much so, they recently held a successful pop-up in the city centre by the canal, serving up an array of stunning natural wines for new and old fans to enjoy. Open Wednesday to Saturday, visitors can enjoy a carefully curated selection of beautiful natty wines made by small producers, with coffees and homemade organic food to accompany them. Isca Wines, 825 Stockport Rd, Levenshulme, M19 3PN.
6. Le Social Wine
Ok, technically not a bar, per se, but a seriously cool wine shop in the Ancoats/New Islington area hosting regular tastings and supper nights, Le Social is a serious community asset, doing the hard work for us and ensuring that every single item they stock has a socially conscious background and a great story to tell. Born in lockdown just last year, the shop stocks tons of gorgeous natural wines, and even has an introductory selection for those yet to get familiar. Browse, taste, socialise, enjoy locally sourced grub… Get le social, I suppose you could say! Le Social Wine, Container 88 Pollard Yard, 15 Pollard St E, M40 7SL.
7. Idle Hands
Found within the bustling Northern Quarter, Idle Hands may be, for the most part, known for their artisan coffees and tasty brunch dishes, but it’s also a chill spot to grab a bottle of natty vino, too, with all bottles priced under £20 so that they don’t break the bank. The bottles are available to take home with you if you don’t fancy cracking it open there and then, and you can browse their fantastic selection while enjoying a nice, hot brew. Idle Hands, 35 Dale St, M1 2HF.
8. Grape to Grain
A cosy spot in lovely Prestwich, Grape to Grain offers a fab selection of wines, with a number of natural ones to try, too. Stocking hundreds of bottles for vino fans to browse and sip on, guests can enjoy vintage bottles and vegan wines, as well as a small but mighty selection of tasty natty wines. There’s a little something for all palates and price ranges, and guests are invited to drink inside and enjoy a few nibbles and sandwiches alongside their glass when visiting. Grape to Grain, 1 Church Ln, Prestwich, M25 1AN.
Teaming up with Le Social Wine, Common is now serving some gorgeous natural wines at their Manchester city-centre bar, all of which can be enjoyed alongside their beloved Nell’s Pizza slices. Boasting an impressive line-up, Common’s array of natty wines promises to be ever-rotating, allowing guests to try something new when they visit. Think crisp whites, deep reds, and refreshing orange wines, with NYC-inspired pies on the side, of course. Common, 39-41 Edge St, M4 1HW.