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Oddest bar review

Lynda Moyo takes her hat (and her coat) off to the third bar in the Odd family

Written by . Published on October 12th 2009.

Oddest bar review

Odd, Odder and now Oddest. It was a natural progression, but perhaps fitting.

The third addition has ventured out of the city centre, and onto Wilbraham Road in Chorlton. It has replaced the minimalist Polar Bar with a bar brimming with oddities. As with the rest of the Odd family, Oddest also has a food menu but on the Saturday night I visited, they'd unfortunately finished serving food at the premature time of 7pm. It was disappointing but oh well- who needs food when there's boho-boozing to be had.

Oh and let's not forget the Virgin Mary statue with a little Sid the sloth from the Ice Age movie, perched in her hair. The most intriguing oddity award though, goes to the projector screen which featured what my friend called: “a cartoon for lefties”.

That particular night the whole of Wilbraham Road was over-run with 16-year-olds, swigging White Lightening and forcing adults, including me, to veer into the road so as to avoid them. I've no idea what was going on, or for that matter if this is what Chorlton has to offer every weekend, however what I can say is that I was pleased to find that not one of the little hood-rats had managed to fake ID their way into Oddest. Thus I was relieved to find that it was a busy, mature and comfortable bar.

So comfortable in fact that people seem to forget to take their coats off. As my friend, Emma - a keen follower of fashion commented: “It's so hot, my knee caps are sweating,” as she loosened her brand new over-the-knee boots. Yet 60% of the men in Oddest were bizarrely zipped up to the neck...all night. I guess being a cool Chorltonian has never been so uncomfortably hot, although you'd never be able to tell. Everyone seemed to enjoy standing, socialising and swigging the night away. The granny in me decided 'they won't feel the benefits' when it's home time.

The swigging included a number of Oddest's varied cider, beer and ale selection from around the world. The list includes Asahi from Japan, Warsteiner from Germany, Peroni from Italy, Budvar from Czech, Goose Island from USA, Coopers from Australia and Estrella Damm from Spain. They also have a 'Beer of the Week' written on a board which on my visit was the Freedom Dark Lager, an organic UK dark lager. Prices range from £2.80 to £3.80 for bottles. It's perfect if that's your tipple, although a few girlie cocktails wouldn't go a miss on the menu to give an alternative to wine or Champagne.

Seating-wise, there is plenty of it at Oddest as well as enough space to have a bit of a boogie, however weekends get so busy that you'll struggle to find space to sit or do the grapevine for that matter. Luckily, it's not really that type of a place; the music on Saturday was a jazzy, laid back mix and on future nights there are all sorts of plans to have knitting nights, live music and movie nights in this venue. They're clearly sticking with the Odd theme of trying a little harder. This isn’t one of those can’t-be-bothered bars: you know the ones, a couple of flat screens, the standard drinks list...er…tables…er…chairs and not much else. Still with Electrik, Dulcimer and The Bar just down the road the competition for the drinker’s dollar is stiff down here so sense of identity is vital.

In Oddest you'll find a glass wall made of cassette tapes, a saggy satin ceiling, eerie clairvoyant lamp shades, a Moroccan-themed nook, a stuffed parrot, a Kingbee Records Jukebox straight from the legendary Chorlton collectables music shop of the same name in Chorlton (nice to see they're keeping it local. Oh and let's not forget the Virgin Mary statue with a little Sid the sloth from the Ice Age movie, perched in her hair. The most intriguing oddity award though, goes to the projector screen which featured what my friend called: “a cartoon for lefties”.

Oddest adds another creative – if familiar - string to the Odd bow. That's not to say that the Odd chain doesn't have its flaws; Odder has on more than one occasion had an off-putting pong, in my experience. Odd has also sat on the fine line of quirky and queasy with its designer-dingy feel. But at least they've all got character hey. Oddest certainly fits in with the theme and has the potential to be the best of the lot.

Venues are rated against the best examples of their kind: fine dining against the best fine dining, cafes against the best cafes. Following on from this the scores represent: 1-5 saw your leg off and eat it, 6-9 get a DVD, 10-11 if you must, 12-13 if you’re passing,14-15 worth a trip,16-17 very good, 17-18 exceptional, 19 pure quality, 20 perfect. More than 20: Gordo gets carried away

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7 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousOctober 12th 2009.

Cant help thinking that 15 out of 20 is a lot for a night out in a sweat box that must have been smelled pretty rank unless cool chorltonians sweat chanel . Still that’s the beauty of Chorlton – never a bad review ( unless swiftly superseded by a good one e.g. Horse and Jockey ).

ELOctober 12th 2009.

I've been twice now on a Friday night. Both times it took ages to get served, and last time we ended up literally sat on the floor in the overcrowded "patio" area; which they then close at 10.30 squeezing even more folk inside. Good selection of beers tho, and good tunes... although why put the DJ right next to the loos? He seemed surprised his decks kept getting nudged! A clear 5/10 from me!

plasticmanOctober 12th 2009.

A truly awful night out. A chain bar hurridly lashed together with the intention of extracting as much cash out of the punter. The interior is 'odd' or vulgar depending how you see things, already looking dated. Heavy doorstaff telling customers they can't stand in the only space available while bar staff continue pulling pints for new punters. Reminds me of Deansgate Locks.

RobOctober 12th 2009.

'Odder Still' perhaps?

smittyOctober 12th 2009.

What are they going to call their next one?

predictableOctober 12th 2009.

This could have been the first cool bar in Whalley Range. Instead, it's just another bar in Chorlton...

DoobieOctober 12th 2009.

It seems strange that you put a load of tat in what was formerly a dead bar and it's mobbed. What's the attraction? Very odd indeed!

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