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Places to Eat in Bristol

The First British Dal Festival to Hit Bristol in 2018



dal festival bristol

Dal Festival coming to Bristol next year

The curtain is closing on an amazing year for Bristol’s culinary scene, with successful café and restaurant launches, exciting food festivals, bustling markets and more. Looking ahead to 2018 there’s already plenty to shout about, and the British Dal Festival will be landing in Bristol this March.

The festival will highlight the diversity and simplicity of this popular staple, with bean, lentil and pea dishes from all four corners of the world. It’s set to take place in Bristol from 19th to 25th March, 2018.

Dal may be most readily linked to countries like India and Nepal, but this basic bean dish is enjoyed across Asia, South America and beyond. As people turn their backs on meat-based diets for reasons of taste or sustainability, dishes like dal are being pushed more and more into the spotlight. The inaugural British Dal Festival is testament to that.

dal festival bristol

Image courtesy of Jenny Chandler

“The British Dal Festival is a chance to share and

celebrate recipes from all our communities, spreading the

love for an affordable, healthy, sustainable and, above all, delicious dish.”

Jenny Chandler, United Nations European Pulse Ambassador 2016

With backing from the British Edible Pulses Association, the British Dal Festival is a free event due to take place in locations across Bristol. Hungry festival-goers will be following a route to many of the city’s welcoming cafes and restaurants, with delicious dal dishes to enjoy on route.

Aside from the food, the Dal Festival will shine a light on the many Bristol communities who have a fond attachment to this simple but delicious dish. 91 Ways — a local organisation bringing Bristol’s 91 language communities together — are also playing a large part in the cultural side of the festival.

Elsewhere at the festival, IncredibleEdible Bristol will be planting in the Bearpit, and Bristol Farmers’ Market will have local chefs in to dish up a range of dal specialities. Sunday March 25th, the final day of the festival, will see street food stands, market stalls, live demonstrations and music over at Paintworks on the Bath Road — before the festival closes for the year.

To find out more about the festival and its locations, you can find the organisers on social media here:

Twitter @BritishDalFest

Instagram @BritishDalFestival

Facebook /BritishDalFestiva




Don’t Be A F***ing No Show, Bristol



Don’t be a Fucking No Show

This is an article I’ve wanted to write for a long time, but the recent chaos that the snow caused in Bristol reminded me to get on with it – as apparently our lives had to stop and we all lost our minds. Restaurant no shows are becoming a real problem in Bristol, especially for our independents. They’re losing money, and if we’re not careful we’ll lose them.

I do understand that plans/life can change, I don’t want to hold a gun to your head and force you to stick to every plan you’ve ever made. However, there are some very easy rules to follow if you want to go out and enjoy a lovely meal at one of our restaurants. They’re called manners. Simple, basic manners.

1. If you book somewhere and then your plans change, maybe you were snowed in or you got sick? Call and fucking cancel!

If you were going to meet a mate and then you couldn’t make it would you just think “ah fuck it, they’ll work it out when I don’t turn up”. No, you’d call, apologise and make new plans (unless you’re a complete prick). If the restaurant knows you aren’t coming they can try and find someone to fill your place, especially if they are popular and have waiting lists – but they need to be allowed the time to do that.

2. Don’t make multiple bookings and then choose one closer to the date and cancel the rest.

This is still complete fuckery. How hard is it for you to make up your mind? Why does the restaurant have to pay for you being a complete wet flannel? It seems that this is quite a common “thing” for people to do and think it’s ok if they cancel far enough in advance, and fair that takes away some of your dickishness, however, there are lots of other people trying to book restaurants. What if they call and can’t book because you’re holding a table just because “you can’t decide” and then they go somewhere else and then you cancel – see how cuntish this is? You’re basically a German hogging a sun bed on holiday, even though you spend all of your time in the pool. (Sorry for the horrible stereotype to my German friends.)

3. You are a grown ass person, start acting like one. The restaurant does not need to call you to remind you of an appointment you made.

Put it in your diary and sort your life out. I am a self-confessed idiot when it comes to organising my life and I still know when I’m booked to eat somewhere (mainly because I get all the food feels and think about what I’m going to eat for days pre-booking). If you fuck up, and we all do it, call to apologise. If the restaurant calls you, apologise. Don’t hang up, or pretend like life isn’t happening outside of your bubble.

That’s it. Three simple points. In summary, if you make a restaurant booking turn up to it, if you can’t make it apologise and cancel, don’t book multiple restaurants and then select your chosen one closer to the date, if you fuck up make sure you apologise. BASIC FUCKING MANNERS.



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Happy Bird Comes to Roost in Bristol



happy bird bristol

Happy Bird Arrives In Bristol

Taking flight this coming Friday (26th Jan), Happy Bird is the latest opening on Bristol’s Whiteladies Road. Dedicated to quality, this brand new restaurant and take-away serves up fresh fried and grilled chicken reared the way it should be.

Nesting in the Yorkshire Wolds

Happy Bird’s dedicated bosses scoured the land in search of a chicken farmer with the right attitude to animal welfare, and they found one in the rolling Yorkshire Wolds. Farmer Ed’s pullets aren’t cooped up in the hen-house and force-fed grain, they’re free to flap around the pastures and enjoy the outdoor life. Fed on a diet of corn and fresh herbs – with no artificial flavourings or additives – these free-range hens enjoy the good life far longer than the average battery bird.

Clucking nice gaff

The interior of Happy Bird’s  brand new outlet is all bright neon lights, sleek metal grills and clean lines, with an egg-inspired yellow and white colour theme which reminded me that chicken was the order of the day – though that might not have been deliberate. Either way, it’s a stylish and enticing setup.

Diners can take a seat and eat in at any of the benched tables, or ‘Cluck and Collect’ with the take-away service. And if you want your chicken to wing its way to you instead, Happy Bird run a home delivery service.

Feeling peckish?

Happy Bird’s menu offers up tasty treats like honey and chilli-glazed wings, grilled breasts and crisp, fried tenders, making the best of the meat on each bird. Tender thigh and breast burgers made a nice change from the usual beef, and you can have it rolled into a burrito too – all accompanied by a delicious range of greens and salads. A selection of seven colourfully-named home-made sauces add a beautiful ‘zing’ to the meat, complementing the flavours perfectly.

For a restaurant that has taken such time and care in choosing Bristol as a location, I was a little disappointed with the beer selection. I like the Magic Rock brewery as much as the next crafty hipster, but we have so many wonderful breweries in this city there’s no shortage of choice. That said, it’s very early days at Happy Bird HQ, and I dare say they’ll be knocking on the doors of a few local breweries soon.

Happy Bird’s simple aim is to provide the best chicken in town, and I think they’re off to a strong start. With such evident care given to sourcing the meat and setting up a pheasant pleasant space to dine in, they deserve to do well.

Happy Bird sits by the entrance to Clifton Down Shopping Centre, and you can check out the full menu here. For more of Chris Callaghan’s reviews and write-ups, you can find him here.

Author’s note: I was invited to try Happy Bird’s offerings free of charge, and really enjoyed it. I thought you might too, so I wrote this.



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Rosa Opens in Bristol



rosa tapas bar

Rosa Review

The rising chill of autumn had descended, and I was a Bristol girl in need of a stiff drink to warm my gills. Red coat on, black heels donned and a long overdue catch up with an old friend in the diary, we headed on over to the newly opened Rosa on Whiteladies Road for a night of tapas and prosecco.

Rosa has some big shoes to fill. Bristolians will remember the good old days of Rocinantes and Quartier Vert and more recently the Townhouse at this treasured venue.

tapas rosa

Credit: Ellis Fox

Spread over two floors, with candles, old typewriters and flowers galore, this new bar-come-eatery, which promises “world inspired food to share” is romantic, cosy and stylish.

If you can’t quite justify spending money on a round-the-world plane fare, a trip to Rosa will go some way to taking you on a global foodie adventure.

Chef Tim Denny – formerly of Totterdown’s Historical Dining Rooms – is at the kitchen helm and he’s created a menu that simultaneously tantalises, impresses and surprises.

Sharing dishes include mixed bread with salt and paprika butter (£4), spiced flatbread with curried chickpeas, yoghurt and fresh lime (£5.50), steamed bao with pulled oxtail, miso mayonnaise and crispy shallots (£6 and my personal favourite), as well as burrata mozzarella with picked mooli, radish and mint salad (£6.50).

rosa food

Credit: Ellis Fox

For meat lovers, there’s a sliced shoulder of Iberico pork option (£7) and a mouth-watering whole Galican beef rib (£25) cooked over hot coals and served on the bone with baby gem salad. Seafood fans can opt for hot seared salmon sashimi with sesame and soy (£7.50) or flame grilled octopus with crisp noodles and spring onions (£6.50). There’s also the classic Spanish tapas dish of patatas bravas (£5.50) up for the tasting, and its rich, spicy tomato  sauce, doesn’t disappointed.

rosa menu

Credit: Ellis Fox

For dessert, there’s churros with olive oil Nutella (£5.50) and BBQ salted milk ice cream with caramel coconut sponge (£6.50), among other options. What’s more there’s always a cheese of the month. Now we’re talking…

Alongside the main tapas menu, there is a fantastic value set lunch menu at £11.95 for two courses and £13.50 for three courses.

Fancy a tipple? There’s a large selection of wine available by the glass or carafe starting at £4.50 and going up to the most expensive £48 Bordeaux from Chateau Paveil de Luze. A generous cocktail selection is available, in addition to a plethora of local gins (Psychopomp), Spanish sherries, sparkling Japanese sake and beer from a range of local breweries including Wiper and True and Arbor Ales.

rosa wine

Credit: Ellis Fox

It’s unlikely you’ll get through the entire menu on your first visit. But don’t they say it’s always best to leave wanting more?

Rosa, 85 Whiteladies Road, Bristol, BS8 2DT. Tel: 0117 973 9302.



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