I’m a big fan of local bar chain Trof, which has grown from sites in studentville Fallowfield to glorious makeovers like the Deaf Institute and Gorilla via this Northern Quarter branch on Thomas Street. Each has a warm, cosy appeal with a touch of rough luxe, and Trof NQ excels at making shadowy corners welcoming. Great idea, then, to add an extra reason for punters to settle in for the night: a well-stocked bourbon bar on the first floor.
My partner’s the whisk(e)y aficionado in our house but I’ve picked up one key piece of knowledge over the last few years: I like whisky, too! And it’s hard not to be impressed with Trof’s selection of bourbons from seven US distilleries. Prices start at £3, for a very quaffable Old Grand-Dad or inoffensive Elmer T. Lee, and range up to around £10; but for £5 or £6 you can try exemplary tipples like Evan Williams’ robust Extra Aged. Mr Knowledgeable recommends Noah’s Mill – feisty but still very drinkable at 57.15% ABV – and Rock Hill Farm’s combination of strength and sweetness.
You can also try an infusion, created by Trof as the basis for its range of whisky cocktails; the Spiced, Orange and Hickory Smoke aren’t really to our taste but if you’re cautious about bourbon’s bite they could be a good starting point. The usual range of other drinks, including Samuel Adams beer chasers for £2, is also available of course, alongside sensibly hearty breakfasts(!), burgers and Sunday roasts.