Alex Hanson, head mixologist at Slingsby Gin, takes us through his top five cocktail bars across Yorkshire. From Harrogate to Sheffield, Alex uncovers some of the best tipple-tastic hotspots in and around the region.
The Maven, Leeds
This bar offers something a little quirky. It may be hidden but it’s not one to miss. With no obvious signage, the prohibition style bar is located in the heart of the city on Call Lane – behind a hidden staircase and doors adorned with a large ‘M’. If you’re looking for a complex, exciting and inventive cocktail, you’re in good hands with The Mavern’s experienced, theatrical and charismatic bar tenders. It’s speak-easy style at its best and has sophisticated cool nailed.
Chapter House, York
Located at the Principal York Hotel, The Chapter House is a cool bar with a contemporary twist. The perfect spot to relax with a good tipple no matter what the mood or situation. Located next to York train station, it is almost impossible to not pop in and have a drink whilst waiting for the train you’re about to miss now you’ve stumbled upon this gem. A personal favourite is the Yorkshire Negroni, which replaces the classic London dry gin with Slingsby Rhubarb gin, making the drink a softer, floral infusion and a lot more approachable compared to its bitter big brother.
The West Park, Harrogate
Transformed from the original Victorian coach house, The West Park hotel stands in an unrivalled location overlooking the Stray, 200 acres of parkland right in the centre of the historic spa town. The bar features an extensive and innovative cocktail menu, featuring classic cocktails and newbies alike. A favourite of mine is the Rhubarb and Passionfruit Punch for 2 – a sharing cocktail, served in a lightbulb and dry ice cafeteria. Fruity, easy to drink packed full of theatre!
The Great Gatsby, Sheffield
If you’re looking for a party spot don’t let the 1920s snug style of The Great Gatsby bar have you fooled. At the weekend with its 3am license, killer music list and central location, it’s the perfect bar to start and end your night. The Great Gatsby has an elegant gin list leads, fabulously flavoursome cocktails and to make it even better, it serves top notch Mexican street food – it’s one of my favourite hangout spots.
Whistlers Bar, Pickering
Whistler’s Bar is situated in the heart of Pickering, a town that loves its Gin! This little gem has a vast gin menu, featuring over 45 gins from around the world. With a massive outdoor space, Whistlers is a great summer cocktail spot. The friendly and knowledgeable staff have a huge array of garnishes to ensure your perfect mix is made just the way you like it. The bar often holds a Friday night happy hour with live music – who doesn’t love a happy hour?