Overnight, Halifax got cool. Don’t get me wrong. I love Halifax. It’s my adopted home town. But cool it ain’t. So all hail the Grayston Unity, an independent bar in a 19th century building, tucked away behind the magnificent town hall.
It’s not an easy find. The frontage is small and not shouty. Inside, the arched ceiling in the bar was originally where the horse drawn coaches came through. Now, you’ll find an eclectic mix of décor and vintage furnishings including a ‘front room’ with comfy sofas, and a life-size pot boxer dog just like Buster in the John Lewis Christmas ad.
Owner Michael Ainsworth has been a music promoter since the early 80s and in 2013 he set up the Halifax Heritage Trail which celebrates the frankly surprising musical history of Halifax. So it’s no surprise that the background music is well chosen.
But you want to know about the beer. I found Life & Death from the Cragg Vale brewer Vocation, Barbarossa from Ilkley Brewery, Monkeytown Mild from the Phoenix Brewery in Heywood and Marble Brewery Manchester Bitter. Always on tap is Chinook Blonde from Goose Eye Brewery. There’s a ‘gin of the week’ and the wine list is pretty good too; ten by the glass, plus prosecco.
There’s no food to speak of, other than a rather fine pork pie, olives, crisps and nuts, though there’s talk of street food in the courtyard.
The Grayston Unity, 1 – 3 Wesley Court, Halifax HX1 1UH. Open: Tuesday & Wednesday 4–10pm; Thursday 4–11pm; Friday & Saturday 12–11.15pm; Sunday 1–10pm. 01422 646240.
DRINKS SELECTION 5/5