LAVA BAR. SO CALLED not because of any volcanic rock features within the bar (though this would be ridiculously cool, I’m not sad enough to suggest that the exposed brickwork is meant to represent such) but because of the lava lamps dotted around the windowsills.
It is very minimalist, cute and actually, quiet on most afternoons. However, it is great for a casual drink with great staff who respect loyal custom. Yes, it’s Castlefield again. Let’s just say I’m in love with the place.
I chatted to Liz and Danny there, who hail all the way from Crewe – my technically-correct hometown – and they pick this bar purely out of how relaxed and chilled it is. They come into the city as much as possible. Summing up Lava: (because they put it into better words than me) “It’s really chilled out – everyone is so polite, it really makes a difference.”
Plus, it turned out that prices are a little bit cheaper than they are a mile up the road. One of the head honchos, Mal, (the owners here like get to know their regulars) says their chef is Canadian – and his speciality is burgers.
And if you’re still not convinced? Word is Sophie Ellis Bextor hung out there once for a cuppa. If it’s good enough for her…
Lava Bar, Castlefield. Tapas (large), includes garlic prawns, stuffed tomatoes, olives and bread; £7.95