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11 Places to Eat in Bristol to Nurse Your Soul

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Brew Eggs

11 ways to nurse your soul: Bristol Eateries

Abby of the fantastic Bristol food blog, Bristol Eating adventures has been sampling & writing about places to eat in Bristol since 2012 and in this time has come up with an array of places in Bristol to nurse your soul.

When I’ve had a bad day I sometimes daydream about my favourite foods. Nothing is more cheering than a plate of exactly what you fancy. This can obviously change daily, even hourly. Once a plate is popped down in front of you and you lift the first fork/spoon or finger to your face then almost all the woes of a bad day melt into nothingness, if just for the duration.

Here are 11 places which equal instant happiness in Bristol.

1. Dynamite Rolls at Obento

dynamite rolls at obento

Sushi will always be right up there for food loves however if I had to pick one item off a Japanese menu in Bristol it would be the dynamite rolls at Obento. These maki shake off the healthy stigma by having a coating of tempura batter around the seaweed wrap. Filled with salmon, cucumber, avocado and Japanese mayonnaise, you get 8 maki in a portion although if you are having a really terrible day I would order 2 lots. There have been many imitators but none have come close to the dynamite roll.

2. Flour & Ash – anything and everything

Flour and Ash pizza

Easily my favourite spot in Bristol for pizza. Flour & Ash has the best bases, slightly chewy without being dry. With toppings such as chorizo and pickled chilli, a personal favourite and the hallowed ox cheek ragu with provolone, everything tastes fantastic. Just leave room for their homemade ice creams and sorbets.

3. Three Brothers Burgers – Blue cheese burger

Three Brothers Burger

A good blue cheese burger is hard to come by. Either the cheese is too young or there’s not enough of it. Luckily no such problem with the blue cheese at Three Brothers. Alex James’ Blue Monday cheese crowns this juicy meaty creation and it’s stupendous. Not to mention dipping the fries in mayo mixed with Tabasco chipotle sauce, heavenly.

4. Bravas – Grilled ibérico pork bravas

bravas pork

I consider myself lucky enough to live extremely close to Bravas, Bristol’s best tapas restaurant, in my opinion. All the dishes I have tried are superb but my absolute favourite is the grilled ibérico pork. Melt in the mouth, cooked simply and full of flavour.

5. Salt Pepper Squid – Mayflower

Mayflower salt pepper squid

To be honest everything at the Mayflower I’ve tried has been great, from hot pots, to three roasties. But I always order a plate of their squid. The best salt and pepper chilli squid I’ve ever tasted, crispy, light and never chewy.

6. Guacamole at Viva La Mexicana

Guacamole at Viva La Mexicana

Too many places do unacceptable guacamole. Viva La Mexicana does the best. I could eat bowls and bowls of the stuff complete with their fresh corn chips, plus avocado is very good for you, win/win.

7. Marmite toast at Small St. Espresso

small st espresso marmite

I never thought that toast could be someone’s soul mate but in Hart’s Bakery sourdough bread, toasted by the fine gentlemen who work at Small Street Espresso, I have found perfection. Generously slathered with melted butter and for me a medium amount of Marmite, when I need a pick me up for breakfast this is the only thing that will bring me out of the doldrums.

8. Mushrooms on toast at Rosemarino

rosemarino

Rosemarino have won many awards for their breakfasts and for good reason.  My favourite is the sautéed mushrooms with parmesan and crispy sage on toast but their eggs benedict is a close second.

9. Chicken Dandan hot pot at Chilli Daddy

chilli daddy bristol

This fast became a lunchtime addiction of mine. Chilli Daddy specialised in Szechuan noodle hot pots, although rice is also available. Chicken dandan noodles with a tea egg at spice level 3 is my favourite order for a huge warming hug in a dish.

10. Brew  – anything

brewfast

My favourite local breakfast spot. Everything they do is superb. The bacon is so thick I doubt it can be bettered in any Bristol eateries. My top picks are the Brewfast, two poached eggs, bacon, avocado on sourdough topped with home made tomato sauce. Or the chorizo topped scrambled eggs with chilli flakes on sourdough is pretty great too.

11. Wiper and True Milkshake Stout cake from Workhouse Café

I don’t have much in the way of a sweet tooth, as this list will probably tell you, but this cake is fantastic. Not too sweet, slightly gooey and a moreish frosting.  Workhouse café does some great food and plenty of fresh juices, a brilliant addition to Bristol.

I feel lifted just writing about all my favourite foods. Alternatively if you are in an emergency seek out the nearest shop, buy the biggest bag of crisps you can find plus hummus, cheese & chive or whatever your chosen poison is and dip until you can see the bottom of the tub, you’re welcome.

Like this? Then give yourself a read of the best Bristol hangover destinations.

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Sampling The Lesser Known Ciders From Thatchers

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Thatchers Cider

Despite the recent rain, bbq season is upon us, and no camping trip or garden gathering is complete without a few ciders to sweeten the deal.

With honey notes and a golden colour, the medium-dry Thatchers Gold is the flagship cider from one of Somerset’s oldest cider makers – and it’s a great go-to cider on any occasion – but Thatchers Cider have been producing and pressing apples in the Somerset village of Sandford since 1905, and their selection these days is broad.

Thatchers Cider

Thatchers Katy, the 7.4% single variety cider well-known to Bristolians who want something a bit stronger than Gold or Dry..

An introduction to Thatchers Cider and Pasture

To showcase the full range of their cider offerings, the Thatchers Cider team descended on Pasture – the stylish new bar and restaurant near St Mary Redcliffe – last week.

With butcher Sam’s enthusiasm for local produce and Thatchers’ chief cider-maker Richard Johnson on hand, it was the perfect pairing.

Thatchers Cider

Thatchers Redstreak, a multi-award winning cider with accolades such as Supreme Champion at International Cider Challenge 2017, and World’s Best Sparkling Cider at the World Cider Awards 2017.

Richard introduced us to the Thatchers Cider story – starting over 100 years ago with farmer William Thatcher making cider to help pay his workers, and ending with William’s great grandson Martin (the current managing director) overseeing Thatchers Cider distribution throughout the UK. In between tastings, Pasture’s Sam talked us through the menu selections he’d made to bring out the best in the ciders chosen.

Thatchers Cider

Cured duck breast with juniper and orange marmalade, on a chai cracker.

Food and cider pairings

The Thatchers team opened with Katy, a light and softly sparkling cider made from Katy apples, and with it came Pasture’s scallop ceviche with pickled gooseberry and lime – the delicate seafood working beautifully with the light, bubbly cider. There followed five further mini-courses, each paired with a different Thatchers’ cider.

The meaty steak tartare with oyster mayonnaise met its match in Thatchers’ Old Rascal – a peppery 4.5% cider made with Tremlette and Somerset Redstreak apples for a bittersweet flavour. And Pasture’s short rib croquettes with delicate gochujang aioli balanced nicely with the bold and beautiful Thatchers’ Vintage – an oak-matured 7.4% cider with fruity aroma and crisp flavour. 

Thatchers Cider

Pasture’s Signature Short Rib Croquette with gouchong aoili and nasturtiums.

It was a great chance to try lesser-known Thatchers ciders you don’t regularly see in the big supermarkets, and clear to see the thought Sam had put into the food pairings he chose.

Thatchers Cider

Thatchers Family Reserve, a sparkling Somerset Apple Wine that rediscovers the recipe for champagne cider originally created by William Thatcher in the early 1900s.

If you’d like to give a few of Thatchers’ lesser-known ciders a try, take a look at the full range and buy online here. And for more details on the flame-grilled offerings over at Pasture, check out their website here.

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Bristol’s Biggest Food Festival Is Back

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Bristol Food Connections

Bristol Food Connections 2018 is nearly here, so it’s time to plan your festival!

Bristol Food Connections is one the highlights of Bristol’s food calendar, with a ridiculous amount of events (130 at the last count!) taking place across the city from 11-17th June.

It’s a fairly huge festival, covering everything from growing your own food to huge gala dinners and talks on sustainability. We’ve decided to break down what’s happening and pick out a few of our favourites from this year’s programme.

Bristol Food Connections

Booze it up

There are plenty of ways to hit the hard stuff (and find out more about it too)…

See more of Bristol

With events dotted in every far flung corner of Bristol, now is the time to get out and explore!

  • World Food Passport (All week, £8)
    Taste your way around the food businesses of Gloucester Road, collecting stamps as you go (or you can also do a guided food tour of Gloucester Road that week too).
  • Behind the Scenes of a Gin Distillery (Sat 16th, £25)
    Head out to Thornbury for this special tour of 6 O’clock Gin’s distillery to find out more about how their delectable spirit is made (with plenty of tasters along the way, obv).
  • Shroomshop (Sun 17th, £30)
    Get some hands-on tips about mushroom cultivation at this workshop in St Werbs.
  • Thyme Trail (Fri 15th, £15)
    Visit various vendors in Wapping Wharf, hearing the stories behind the businesses and getting tasters as you go.
  • TimeZone: Eat Your Way Around the World (Sat 16th, £4)
    Try a range of international cuisine in Easton, including Jamican, Indonesian and Spanish.
  • Eco day at Hartcliffe City Farm (Sun 17th, Free)
    Try your hand at pond dipping, searching for bugs and other activities.

Bristol Food Connections

Educate yourself

It’s not just about filling your face with food, there’s plenty of opportunity to learn a new skill or hear some interesting perspectives on the food we eat too:

Fantastical feasts

Some seriously special dinner events from well-known chefs and local producers…

  • FUTURE: FEAST (Mon 11th, £25)
    Star Trek meets Come Dine With Me in an ‘immersive dining experience’.
  • A Summer’s Feast (Fri 15th & Sat 16th, £30)
    The next generation of Bristol chefs serve up a seasonal feast.
  • It’s a Bristol Ting! (Sun 17th, Free)
    Celebrate Bristol’s Jamaican community with rum & jerk chicken at Lakota.
  • Chocolate Gala Dinner (Mon 11th, £35)
    A special dinner to kick-off festival week, with all 3 courses featuring chocolate.
  • Summer Dine & Vine Feast (Thu 14th, £30)
    A three-course tasting menu paired with bio-dynamic wines.
  • Homegrown Collective Supper Club (Fri 15th, £35)
    Three-courses of local, seasonal food accompanied by music.

 

There are also loads of free talks and demos at the Festival Hub (next to Watershed) throughout the week, so it’s worth stopping by to see what’s on!

 

See the full Bristol Food Connections Programme

 

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Hyde & Co’s Launch Impressive New Cocktail Menu

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A year has passed since Bristol’s finest cocktail bar last refreshed its menu, and it’s all change again at the secretive and stylish Hyde & Co.

2017’s The Last Carnival introduced us to a glamorous world of burlesque, cabaret and circus, showcasing a mastery of cocktail creativity. Midnight in Paris picks up the tale…

The scene is set in 1920’s Paris; a dangerous world of decadence and daring. A jewel heist in the French capital has caught the attention of private detective Kinsey Moran, who must follow a trail through the city’s drinking dens and backstreets to bring the culprits to justice.

From the imagination of talented local designer and bartender Gareth Aldridge, Midnight in Paris’ beautiful story and artwork sets Hyde & Co. apart from the outset – but it’s the variety and quality of the cocktails that tempt visitors to sample daring new concoctions.

With sultry jazz playing softly in the background and a décor embracing the elegance of the roaring 20’s, drinkers can now enjoy a new selection of the bold and innovative cocktails for which Hyde & Co. is known.

Traditional French spirits including Calvados, Cognac and Chartreuse blend beautifully with spice mix, bitters and liqueurs, creating bold new flavours with a nod to classics like the French 75, Sidecar and Kir Royale.

If you’re looking for a recommendation, the gin-based Tribune caught my attention, but the breadth and depth of choice is highly impressive.

Tribune cocktail

‘Tribune’

You can dip into Midnight in Paris at Hyde & Co from Tuesdays to Sundays, 6pm till late. Check out the Hyde & Co website here, and find them on Twitter here. For more reviews and write-ups from @cjcallaghan, check out his Best of Bristol author page.

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