“Let’s Make This Precious” (Runaway Brewery or Missing Manchester Pt 1)

You don’t need me to tell you how brutal Lockdown has felt, eh?

Like many, I’ve been fairly cautious in stepping out and socialising. Looking for those businesses and traders who take seriously the health and safety of both their staff and customers. The best local businesses do precisely that.

Which is why, on my first venture – socially – into Manchester, I opted for Runaway. Knowing Mark, Sam, Oli & Josh, I knew that this would just BE right. That caution would be exercised appropriately.

AND the beer would be exceptional. Because that’s what Runaway do. Exceptional, consistent beer.

I met my dear friends Jock (and later Caroline & John) at Mackie Mayor for a beer at “Jack In The Box”, the Black Jack bar. And my first experience of ordering via apps.

The app was well designed with the ability to order from any of the food & drink vendors and have it delivered to your table. Swift service (we ordered food too) and excellent pints of Track Sonoma, Redwillow Weightless and a delicious Black Jack Pale followed.

All due protocols were followed and the service was superb. If this is the shape of things to come, bring. it. on.

Relaxed. Friendly. Service. Isn’t that what you want?

We got to Runaway just before opening time at 5 and were showed to our table (we booked a few days earlier) and I was quickly tucking into a beery crush of mine. A pin sharp and hoptastic Table Beer.

Mark and Sam & the team have done a great job with the Taproom, it has been my favourite in Manchester for some time. Plenty of tables and space on the mezzanine level, with a birds eye view of a working brewery.

However – aside from ‘one in, one out” access to the facilities, this view was denied its. All seating being outside on a balmy – if cloudy – Mancunian early evening.

A quite superb Mushroom Pizza followed – from the reliably excellent Honest Crust – sooooo tasty…… and the excellent Runaway beers continued to flow. With Pale (my favourite keg beer) and delicately delicious Rhubarb Spritz followed by a fabulous “Rise Like Lions” Chocolate & Chipotle Porter (which might just be the best keg beer I’ve had this year – being a sucker for the Dark Side.

With exceptional venues like GRUB nearby (again, booking required) and the excellent Beatnikz also on Red Bank, (with – hopefully – Black Jack Tap, soon) this little Green Quarter has its critical mass of excellence, with no real need to go elsewhere – especially with The Marble Arch reopening soon.

For now, start with Runaway. This unassuming little slice of beer heaven. For me anyway.

Back soon. Be kind to one another.