This month our food writers Richard Dash and Jamie Carter consider September in the golden hour - the pefect time of day for a cocktail.

And just like that, the summer holidays are over. You survived and you deserve a drink for your efforts. We love this time of year. As summer makes its way into autumn, the leaves start to fall, the shadows lengthen and there’s something very special about relaxing into the early evening golden hour with a drink in hand. Here are a few places that have caught our eye for their innovative cocktails and mocktails.

Suburban Green, Macclesfield

Welcome to the friendly neighbourhood bar that continues to push creativity and craft cocktails for the lucky residents of and visitors to Macclesfield. In our not so humble opinion, Suburban Green sets the bar very high. You’ll find all the classics on the cocktail menu, from Brambles to Margaritas, and for the more adventurous cocktail connoisseur they have their own signature cocktails, including the Banana Libre, Cherry Bakewell Sour, and Pornstar Spritz to name a few. There’s no resting on laurels here, though, as they continue to flex their creative muscle by creating a new Cocktail of the Month (pictured) for us all to enjoy.

Great British Life: Discover the delights to be found at Suburban Green in MacclesfieldDiscover the delights to be found at Suburban Green in Macclesfield (Image: Outsauced Media)

If their cocktails weren’t quite enough, Suburban Green are introducing a collaboration with their neighbours Wood Fire Smoke. If you haven’t heard of this pizza powerhouse, get to know. They have a site in Wilmslow and now in Macclesfield and in our honest opinion are the best pizzas in Cheshire.

Every Monday Wood Fire Smoke offer Margarita Pizzas for £5. Suburban Green are following suit and offering Margarita cocktails for £5 on Mondays too. You can pop into Suburban, pick up a Margarita to go and sit next door with your Marg Pizza, or switch it around and sit in Suburban with a takeaway Pizza and enjoy your Margarita in a chilled glass. That’s what we call neighbourliness.


North Light, Chester

A recent discovery for us, North Light invited us over to try their food, but little did we know that we were about to fall in love with their drinks menu. The alcohol-free menu to be more precise.

As certified members of the LGBTQI+ community we often see the word “inclusive” thrown around quite flippantly. As if using the word in a brand strapline will start attracting a diverse crowd like moths to a flame… North Light, however, breathe inclusivity through their brand, their venue and their menu (intentional rhyme, thank you). Their venue is located in Coachworks Arcade on Northgate Street in the heart of Chester.

Great British Life: Discover great food and fabulous cocktails at North Light, in ChesterDiscover great food and fabulous cocktails at North Light, in Chester (Image: Outsauced Media)It’s clear this bar team know what they’re doing, but what shouts even louder is their clear love for mixology too. You’ll find the cocktail menu split into three areas; Signatures, The Lights (to sip in the glow of daylight) and After Lights (to enjoy as the day grows dark). This new and refreshing way to present a menu alone is impressive enough, but what took us by surprise was the extensive mocktail menu. As someone exploring sobriety this year it felt so good to see this team thinking of each and every person, not wanting anyone to be left out. Not only that, but the prices of the mocktail are much more palatable than other cocktail bars. Roughly £5.50 per mocktail - which is great value considering the ingredients and care that goes into making each drink. For the designated drivers, sober and sober curious readers, this one needs to go on your visit list. Keep an eye on their social media for their Mocktail Masterclass later in the year. We’ll see you there!


GILT Club, Hotel Gotham, Manchester

Nestled beneath the five-star Hotel Gotham on King Street, GILT Club is a speakeasy live music venue we love. With its luxurious vibe, GILT Club offers visitors the chance to step into a secret world of glamour and decadence, evocative of the cabarets of the Great Gatsby era.

Great British Life: Enjoy a Gatsby-esque experience at GILT Club, Manchester. Photo: Gilt ClubEnjoy a Gatsby-esque experience at GILT Club, Manchester. Photo: Gilt Club Live music is at the heart of the GILT Club experience, with jazz bands taking to the stage regularly to transport guests back in time. But GILT Club isn't just about the music. The venue also hosts a range of other events including comedy shows and special appearances by The Globe Girls, a popular drag cabaret act. With a packed programme of events and live music lined up for the coming months, there's never been a better time to sit back and sip a cocktail or two. Make sure you visit their website for their events guide as GILT is not open to walk-ins. @hotelgotham,

Palm Cocktail Bar, Chester

Long before Barbiemania, Palm in Chester was standing pink and proud. Serving all the classics and more experimental creations, no matter how fruity or smoky you like yours, with a selection of over 40 cocktails, they’ll have something for you.

Great British Life: Sophistication awaits at Palm Cocktail Bar, in Chester. Photo: Nic TaylorSophistication awaits at Palm Cocktail Bar, in Chester. Photo: Nic Taylor We’ve been here a few times - once to review the food (hello cheeseburger spring rolls. Don’t knock ‘em till you try ‘em) and other times with family. We know we’re going to get a cocktail with all the fru-fru and they usually play a lot of 00’s RnB remixes to add to the vibe.

When the sun goes down Palm says goodbye to the diners, and from 6pm turns up the speakers and pumps up the vibe. Every weekend you can enjoy a live DJ set, or if you like to drink pink, all of their pink cocktails are £4.95 on Wednesdays. As if we need an excuse to celebrate a Wednesday. See you there.