Your feet hurt, the umbrella blew away in multiple pieces hours ago and you’re up to your eyeballs in carrier bags, receipts and a dwindling bank balance. You need a break, but everywhere in sight is packed as tight as a tin of very flustered – yet somehow very festive – sardines.
Let’s face it, a day out in Liverpool during the lead up to Christmas always goes a little bit like this, doesn’t it?
Well, we are here to save you from the inevitable yuletide pandemonium with a list of the best places to hide away when all of that Christmas commotion gets too much.
Ropes & Twines
70 Bold St, Liverpool L1 4HR
This contemporary spot is a surprising solace away from all that Christmas racket when looking for a decent cup of coffee or glass of wine. Based on Bold Street in the Ropewalks area of the city, Ropes & Twines seems to transport you to a trendy New York borough (or something to that effect.) With its pared back and uber cool interior of greys, whites and blues, this space is great for kicking back with a good book, a cup of coffee or even better – a great glass of wine. The owner designed this venue with the sole purpose of bringing people together, and you’ll notice very quickly that they’ve managed to combine sophistication and that trademark Scouse charm effortlessly by hosting fine food and drink in an oasis of style and comfort.
The Tea Factory, 82 Wood St, Liverpool, L1 4QD
Tucked away over on Wood Street is the unassuming caffeine haven Mother Espresso. Modern and minimalist, this place is certainly no one hit wonder. They’ve an all-embracing menu of coffees, teas and more but they also excel when it comes to their delicious food offering. Warm up from the wintery cold with a Fresh Mint tea or Chai Latte, and then line your stomach for the next few hours of festive bedlam with their “One Hander”; an amazing combination of an English muffin, herb aioli, sausage patty, brie and a fried egg. Don’t fret, they also serve a great selection of veggie and vegan dishes. Their specials also never fail to impress – so get in there quick!
Alma de Cuba
St Peters Church, Seel St, Liverpool, L1 4BH
Formerly known as St Peter’s Roman Catholic Church, this remarkable location was built in 1788 and served as the city’s oldest Catholic church until 1976. The Grade II listed premises is now mostly known for its vibrant, unique club nights where punters go to party with the Samba dancers into the early hours. Alma also, however, boasts a delightful a la carte menu set amongst arguably the most awe-worthy décor in the area. The candlelight, original altar and stained glass make for a cosy hideaway ideal for escaping the furore of the city centre at Christmas.
Dead Crafty Beer Company
92 Dale St, Liverpool, L2 5TF
Arguably one of the best independent bars in Liverpool, the Dead Crafty Beer Company presents a homely tavern which feels welcoming, warm and full of life. You’ll always be treated like a regular here, and their selection of 20 craft beers on tap along with fridges spilling with the best bottles will provide much needed anchorage and respite after a long hard day of Christmas shopping. Oh, they’re dog friendly, too – so you know they’re a good bunch!
Old Haymarket, Liverpool, L1 6ER
Simple, heart-warming fare served up in a quirky setting filled with charm is what makes up the DNA of this little coffee shop. They may not offer a particularly complex or pioneering menu, but what they do, they do extremely well – with a cherry on top. We recommend the bagel with halloumi, avocado and salsa; sounds a modest choice but the freshly baked bagel paired with a zingy homemade salsa elevates this into a winning lunch. Their coffee is fantastic, too. An all-round good egg.
126 Bold St, Liverpool L1 4JA
Treat yourself to a much-needed caffeine (and booze) boost with an Espresso Martini from laid-back Liverpool favourite Tabac. This café-cum-bar has been providing locals with cocktails, great grub and an unparalleled atmosphere for more than 40 years. Grab yourself an all-day breakfast no matter what time of day you choose to break from the almighty trek around the shops. Low lighting and decent tunes make staying here a while feel like a big hug – something we all need after battling through the anarchy that is Lush during December.
The Liverpool Gin Distillery
52-54 Castle St, Liverpool L2
Here you can find an amazing gin and spirits bar that gives you the chance to see Liverpool Organic Gin being made in a 600-litre working copper still. If gin’s not your thing, then don’t worry. They’ve got an extensive range of cocktails as well as wonderful handmade pizzas, tapas, flatbreads and all-things-nibbles. If you’re feeling fancy, you can also spoil yourself with a whisky tasting or indulge in some dark spirit cocktails in their Basement Lounge. We recommend ending your day here and letting your stresses melt away into the night.
So, remember to keep these suggestions up your sleeve next time the suggestion of any more Christmas shopping, festivities or general holiday madness makes you feel particularly Grinch-like. While you’re kicking back, why not have a read of our alternative Christmas gift guide to help you find those last-minute pressies? After all, it wouldn’t be crimbo if we hadn’t left it all to the last minute, would it?