What better way to spend January's long dark evenings than by exploring the city's best bars and restaurants without breaking the bank. And with so many great January offers popping up, it seems silly not to, right? We've rounded up the best of the bunch, with free wine at Randall & Aubin, a whole host of half price offers at The Font, Walrus, Trof, Tampopo and more. Plus a chance to grab some fantastic small plate deals at the likes of Cottonopolis and Volta. Clearly not the month to be watching the waistline, let that be February's problem instead.
Albatross & Arnold - 50% off food and drink
Spinningfield newbie Albatross & Arnold have just opened up above Manchester's urban golf club The Range. They have a generous deal going to celebrate, with half price plates during the day and half price drinks at night. Book online to take advantage.
Albatross & Arnold, Leftbank, Spinningfields, Manchester M3 3AN. Tel: 0161 325 4444. www.therange.uk.com
All Star Lanes - 50% off food
Bowling strike after strike is bound to build up an appetite, and All Star Lanes have a 50% off deal that means you can order a tableful after all that strenuous activity. It's big American eating, with Whole Lobster, Buttermilk fried chicken and Hanger steak on the menu. Book online to get the deal.
Great Northern Warehouse, 235 Deansgate, M3 4EN. Tel: 0161 871 3600 www.allstarlanes.co.uk
Chilli Banana – 50% off food
If you've had your fill of heavy wintery meat dishes over the Christmas period, from Sunday to Thursday popular northern Thai food chain Chilli Banana are offering a half price food menu.
105-107 Lapwing Lane, Didsbury, M20 6UR. Tel: 0161 434 4558. www.chillibanana.co.uk
Cottonopolis - £15 for set menu
Stylish Northern Quarter bar and restaurant Cottonopolis have a tempting set menu of small plates from their Japanese-inspired menu. For £15 you can try their Pork Hamaruki (spring rolls), Teiaki chicken wings, Tuna Nori tacos and more. Offer available for parties of two or more, booking is essential.
Cottonopolis, 16 Newton Street, Manchester M1 2AE. Tel: 0161 236 5144. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Font bars - 50% off food
The Font are running a 50% off food offer throughout January at all three of their Manchester branches. So in case you were in doubt, that's a burger and fries for 3 quid. Their city centre branch is also topping off the deal with 25% off house cocktails all day. Offer available 11am-5pm or 2-5pm depending on which branch you visit.
Font bars: Font New Wakefield, 7-9 New Wakefield Street, Manchester M1 5NP. Tel: 061 236 0944, offer available 2pm-5pm; Font Fallowfield 236-238 Wilmslow Road, Fallowfield, Manchester M14 6LE. Tel: 0161 248 4820, offer available 2pm-5pm; Font Chorlton 115-117 Manchester Road, Chorlton, M21 9PG. Tel: 0161 871 2022. www.thefontbar.wordpress.com
Iberica - 50% off food
For a midweek treat head to Iberica, and get eat for half the price, or eat twice as much as you normally would – your choice. Everything from the a la carte menu is 50% off from Monday to Thursday, but only if you book online. Offer available Mon-Thu.
Iberica, The Avenue, Spinningfields, 3 Hardman Street, Manchester, M3 3HS. Tel: 0161 358 1350 www.ibericarestaurants.com
PLY - 50% off pizza
Pizzas at Ply are half price if you book a table quoting 'JAN50'. Each diner must buy a drink to get the deal, but I'm sure we can manage that. Offer available Mon-Sun.
PLY, 26 Lever Street, Manchester M1 1DW. Tel: 0161 711 0401. www.plymcr.co.uk
Randall & Aubin - free wine
For some, January is a time of abstinence. Thankfully, not for us, as Manchester's only dedicated fish restaurant Randall & Aubin are offering a free carafe of wine to enjoy with lunch or dinner. Booking essential.
Randall & Aubin, 64 Bridge Street, Manchester M3 3BN. Tel: 0161 711 1007. www.randallandaubin.com
Rosylee - 50% off food
Rosylee in the NQ will see you through these grey January days with another great 50% off deal. This one includes all their usual home comfort mains, meat from the grill and their Sunday roasts. Pre-book online or over the phone to get the deal.
Rosylee, 11 Stevenson Square, Manchester, M1 1DB. Tel: 0161 228 6629. www.rosylee.com
Tampopo - 30% off mains
Love Asian-inspired ramen, stir fries and freshly spiced curries? Check out Tampopo's winter offer of 30% off mains such as 6hr slow cooked beef rendag with coconut, chilli, shallots, galangal and lemongrass. Served with roti and smashed cucumber.
Various locations, Tampopo restaurants, www.tampopo.co.uk
Tariff and Dale - 50% off food
Another 50% off deal, so many, so little time. This one's at Tariff and Dale, the Northern Quarter bar serving seasonal classics. Applies to the mains, but not the grill. Offer available from 5pm, Mon – Fri.
From 11 Jan, Tariff & Dale, 2 Tariff Street, Manchester M1 2FN. Tel: 0161 710 2233. www.tariffanddale.com
The Albert Square Chop House, Sam's Chop House and Mr Thomas's Chop House - 50% off food and drink
Manchester's three favourite chop houses are running a 50% off deal throughout January. So take your pick from the menu of hearty british favourites, like their Steamed Scottish Mussels and chips, or go straight for a half-price sirloin, medium rare, thank you. Book on their website to get the deal. Available al day, everyday, except Saturday evening.
The Albert Square Chop House, 14 Albert Square, Manchester M2 5PF. Mr Thomas's Chop House, 52 Cross St, Manchester M2 7AR. Sam's Chop House, Back Pool Fold, Manchester M2 1HN. Tel: 0161 834 3210. www.samschophouse.com.
The Bay Horse Tavern - 50% off food
If you haven't been before, now might be a good time to check out the recently refurbished boozer, The Bay Horse Tavern as they are offering 50% off throughout January when booking in advance. A self-proclaimed 'modern take on a victorian pub', try some of their small plates such as their ox cheek on toast and wild mushrooms and goats cheese.
The Bay Horse Tavern, 35-37 Thomas Street, Manchester, M4 1NA. Tel: 0161 669 5799. www.thebayhorsetavern.co.uk
Trof - 50% off food
NQ favourite Trof has kept it simple this January. Everything on the food menu is half price from Monday to Friday throughout January. Book in advance to get the discount. Nothing more complicated than that.
Trof, 8 Thomas Street, Manchester, M4 1EU. Tel: 0161 833 3197. www.trofnq.co.uk
Volta - £10 for 4 plates
No such thing as the January blues at the Unabombers West Didsbury restaurant, with an offer that is better than half price. For £10 (rather than the usual £25) treat yourself to four of their most popular small plates such as Salt & Pepper Squid with Squid Ink Mayo, Parsley & Garlic, Chargrilled Cauliflower, Caraway & Pomegranate and more. Drinks are cheap too, with a bottle of wine for a tenner and Prosecco for £15. Definitely one to book ahead as spaces are limited. Offer available Mon-Fri 12am-7pm.
Volta, 167 Burton Road, West Didsbury, M20 2LN, Tel: 0161 448 8887, www.voltafoodanddrink.co.uk
Walrus & Tusk - 50% off food
For those of us who haven't just started a clean eating regime, Walrus and Tusk are offering 50% off pizzas, burgers, toasties and loaded fries throughout January. With £5 Daquiris, make it a boozy one too. Book ahead to get the deal – it runs all the time – except Saturdays when you can catch it between 12-3pm. Offer available Mon-Sun, times vary.
Walrus, 78-88 High Street, Manchester, M4 1ES. Tel: 0161 828 8700 www.walrusmanchester.com.
Image: From Volta's small plates selection by Bacon on the Beech