Situated in the premises previously occupied by Scu 2 Bar and prior to that O'Sheas 2 , this is the latest attempt at running a good bar close to the large area of student accommodation nearby. Advertising itself as the cheapest pub in the area, "come in and check out our prices" (about £1.50 for cooking lager) said the sign on the door, we did just that. Inside is a large open bar area, with big screen televisions on each wall and the biggest Playstation/ X-Box with giant plasma I've ever seen. Indeed, a game was going on as we arrived with two students with their half pints of orange enjoying a game and utilising the pub's electrictity instead of their own. There are also two decent looking pool tables, with free pool all day on weekdays between 11am and 8pm; the jukebox being free at the same times. At the back is an open Courtyard (hence the name, no doubt) which is huge and probably a fine place to spend a summer afternoon drinking, assuming you haven't buggared off back home to the Home Counties of course!
Scu 2 Bar now the Courtyard, Chester Street. (c) Google 2011 -View Larger Map .
As for beer, disappointingly no real ale was in evidence despite a blank pump, although there was an excellent bottled selection including the famous Worthington's White Shield bottled-conditioned 5.6% IPA from Britain's oldest microbrewery, which is sadly quite a rareity in most pubs (at least in Manchester). If they could just sort out some real ale, this could definitely become a regular haunt for ourselves. And the prices, well, as usual you get what you pay for - cheap for cooking lager and keg bitter (Boddies), not so cheap for bottles and Guinness. Apparently they have a house band that plays jazz/funk on Monday nights. Don't let this put you off though, it's worth searching out The Courtyard, if only for a few White Shields - nip in here when you're at the Oxford Street end of town, perhaps between visits to Kro 2, Odder, Font or the Lass.
Worthington's White Shield. (c) www.worthingtonswhiteshield.com.