Named after a deranged creature that wants to eat your brain, it’s hard to think of a better name for a drink that manages to pickle your grey matter so well with its vast array of strong liquors, tangy juices and fire. Here’s our pick of the city’s best …
This list will mostly be Tiki themed places – primarily because the Zombie contains enough rum to give a Pirate liver failure, and probably because it hails from some small Pacific island where the only visitors are holidaymakers at Sandals or pregnant turtles. The quintessential Tiki bar in the city has to be Liars Club and so their Zombie must live up to the hype, and with their own ‘secret’ blend of rum – it’s certainly a winner. I don’t know why they have to keep it a secret though. Very rude of them that. Just like that old KFC Colonel and his mix of herbs and spices. Share the wealth you lot!
The Liars Club, 19A Back Bridge St, Manchester M3 2PB
You went straight out after work with all of the boring people in HR and you’ve ended up in Mojos. In fact, to be more precise, you’ve all ended up dancing on a table to the Stone Roses while sloshing a huge Zombie all over the place and trying to get off with Kevin who likes to collect Pokemon cards. Always a fantastic place for a proper big piss up, Mojo’s Zombie is limited to 2 per person and with good reason – it contains Wray & Nephew Overproof Rum, which NASA used to launch Neil Armstrong to the moon in 1969.
MOJO, 59 Bridge St, Manchester M3 3BQ
Revolución de Cuba
If you manage to get past the bouncers then you will find a very reasonable Zombie lurking behind the bar at Revolucion de Cuba, which also comes in a rather impressive ceramic glass/mug type thing. I’m sure these mugs get robbed all the time though – something that impressive won’t typically last long once drunk Mancs get involved. Just look what happened to them Mobikes. Once again they also add plenty of fire to their Zombie, so perhaps give the Ellnette a bit of a rest when you visit. Just in case.
Revolución de Cuba, 11 Peter St, Manchester M2 5QR
Once again I’ve found myself drifting towards a Tiki bar, but this time its Hula on Stevenson Square which is always absolutely rammed on a weekend and offers a pretty decent Happy Hour every weekday after work. They have two Zombie cocktails on offer, the bog-standard one that you’d expect, as well as a Tequila one which is bloody brilliant. It’s like they’ve got a gun, put a sword on it, set it on fire, put a gang of angry wasps in the bullets and tried to kill someone – this bad boy is going to proper do you in. Just like a zombie should.
11 Stevenson Square, Manchester M1 1DB
Being an establishment famed for its extravagant and interesting cocktails, it would be silly for The Alchemist to not have a Zombie, and let me tell you – it’s a cracker. Featuring plenty of juice complete with Bacardi Carta Blanca, Wray and Nephew and Grand Marnier liqueur. This one also contains plenty of Cranberry Juice which gives it a lovely red colour.
1 New York St, Manchester M1 4HD
3 Hardman St, Manchester M3 3HF
Ship Canal House, 17 Slate Wharf, Salford M15 4SX
It’s a weird one Zombie Shack, but because it actually features the name of the cocktail in which I’m talking about, I’d be silly not to include it. It’s a great place, hidden in the arches under Oxford Road station, which specialises in the kind of live music and club nights where you expect to get pelted with beer all night while sweating your face off. Naturally, they do a Zombie, and the last (and only) time I had one I was very, drunk. They are only £7 though and I seem to remember being very satisfied with it.
Zombie Shack, 50 New Wakefield St, Manchester M1 5NP
All Star Lanes
Another venue with a 2 Zombie limit per person. This can either mean one of two things. One is that the drink is so strong that it anyone has any more than two, they’ll end up running down the lanes and getting their head stuck at the end of the gutter or two, the people of Manchester can’t handle their booze. Perhaps it’s both. Drinking one though, it’s clear to see that this bad boy is not to be trifled with. A shit load of rum, brandy, juices and a flurry of absinthe all feature, and although it’s a bit pricey at £15, it will do the job for sure!
All Star Lanes, 235 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4EN
The Deaf Institute
The Zombie at the Deaf Institute contains Pernod. Now, looking at the official ingredients of a Zombie, you’ll find that it’s actually supposed to include this French devil drink. And I suppose that’s the beauty of cocktails – you can mask even the worst flavours with other, better ones and it all comes together to get you leathered.
The Deaf Institute, 135 Grosvenor St, Manchester M1 7HE
Cane & Grain
One that’ll be sure to get you pissed. Stated simply on the menu as five rums and ‘secret tiki juice’ I have to say I can’t remember much from after this but I do remember it was bloody delicious. I’ve actually just learnt that the Zombie started in the mid-’30s in some restaurant in Hollywood. What’s that got to do with anything Tiki related? What does Tiki even mean? Does anyone even know?
Cane & Grain, 49, 51 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1NA