First Street's new booze and blues bar is inspired by a New Orleans harmonica player with no teeth... righto
"We met Bunny Jackson in New Orleans in 2007," says Lyndon Higginson. "He was just a crazy guy, about 80 years old, with one leg, one eye, no teeth and a harmonica. He ran all these old Juke joints. He lived for booze, blues and parties... we had to name a bar after him."
But is he real?
He laughs. "Does it matter?"
Fair enough, as Mark Twain (something of a Mississippi boozer himself) once said: 'never let the truth get in the way of a good story.'
Higginson, the man behind multiple Manchester bars - including Crazy Pedro's, Liars Club and Cane & Grain - has been a busy boy. In the last month or so he's opened a Crazy Pedro's in Liverpool, relaunched the Bay Horse Tavern in Northern Quarter and established a Junkyard Golf Club in an Oxford shopping mall.
Now he's in First Street, readying Bunny's and drawing a phallus on the men's toilet door. "I think people will get the idea," he says, carefully rounding off the testicles.
Higginson and his business partner, James 'Bart' Murphy, took over the lease of the unit after the Liquor Store called it a day. "They weren't performing as well as they wanted, things can get a little flat around here at night," says Higginson, "so we're here to light a fire."
It's taken just under three weeks for the pair to turn the bar around, giving the space what Murphy calls 'a defurb'; chicken wire, corrugated iron and a clapped out motorbike wrapped in fairy lights. "It takes a lot to make a place look so knackered," he says.
As befits the Mississippi vibes, Bunny's 'thing' is blues rock (Sundays and Mondays, when the restaurant next door is closed) big whiskeys, cold beers and 'amazing things in bread' - such as slow-braised beef brisket (£8) and the Cajun shrimp Po' Boy (£7.50).
"We're also doing free hotdogs when the kitchen's closed and house wings with hot sauce for 10p on Wednesdays..." says Higginson. (Hold on. Ten pence?) "Ten f**king pence - suck on that KFC!"