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The Smoke Haus Review

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The Smoke Haus

One of the newest and largest of Bristol’s meat joints, The Smoke Haus takes pride of place on the ground floor of Colston Tower in the heart of the city. Spread across two floors, it’s a stylish enough venue decked out with a mix of rock’n’roll memorabilia and affected street graffiti. It’s an American-style BBQ experience, but there are vegetarian and vegan options too. The menu covers lunch and dinner, with BBQ classics like chicken wings and ribs alongside nachos, hot dogs, smokey-bean chilli and pulled pork burritos.

Classic rock plays out on the radio (with the odd blip), and we enjoyed chowing down to classics by AC/DC, Creedence Clearwater Revival and others. Service is unfailingly friendly, and the staff (although obviously new to the game, perhaps because the place has only just opened) are chatty and welcoming. We had the pleasure of being looked after by no fewer than three waiting staff during our visit. While each was perfectly lovely, I couldn’t help thinking one staff member would have done just fine.

On the beer front, I was very pleased to see The Smoke Haus have approached the Tenby Brewing Company to create a fresh new beer for their menu. The Smoke Haus IPA is a delight; an American-style IPA with a fine balance of malts and hops. I can’t stand it when contemporary craft brewers over-hop their beers — leaving them generic, bitter and samey. With its nicely rounded flavour The Smoke Haus IPA hit the spot, so hats off to the Tenby Brewing Company for that.

With processed cheese and over-done meat, my burger couldn’t follow it up. The smoky flavours the menu had promised me were nowhere to be found, and the coleslaw was on the gloopy side. Nachos were drowning under a heavy layer of melted cheese which did little for the palate, and although the skin-on fries were fine, this was not the meal I had promised my rumbling belly.

We doubled up on a vanilla sundae for dessert, but when it came it was just a little lacklustre. Balls of vanilla ice cream in a glass, topped off with whipped cream. I don’t profess to be an ice-cream sundae expert , but I can tell a good sundae from a poor one. With no sauce, no cherry and no joie de vivre to speak of at all, that, dear reader, was a poor one.

So in short, I’m torn. I quite liked the décor and the music was great. Service with a smile, and tasty beer. Perhaps The Smoke Haus waiting teams need time to bed-in? Maybe the chefs need a crash-course in meat preparation, US-style?

With venues like Three Brothers, The Burger Joint and The Hobgoblin, plus other chain restaurants like Atomic Burger and Meat Liquor, competition is fierce in Bristol and any pretender moving in on the turf had better know their chops. At the moment it feels like The Smoke Haus falls short on the food front, but these are very early days.

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Bristol Pub Quizzes

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It’s time for a good old fashioned Bristol pub quiz

There are endless places where you can find some good Bristol pub quizzes. Fridays and Saturdays are unlikely but here are loads of places Sunday – Thursday.

Monday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Tuesday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Wednesday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Thursday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Sunday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Others:

Blankety Quiz – Found across Bristol and voted the best pub quiz in Bristol

Got any that we’ve missed? Pop them in the comments below.

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Rosa Opens in Bristol

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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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9 Amazing Vans Spotted In Bristol

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Top 9 Vans of Bristol

Art galleries sometimes on the move sharing the art all over the city.

1. This is either very fresh or the van is a permanent feature (look at the back wheel)

montpellier van

2. Unusually the best work on this van in Easton is on the back. Looks like an anti surveillance grannie to me. Ironically I’m watching it though

bristol van

3. St Werburghs now, and it’s like a go faster type tag on the wall behind trying to photobomb this shot

st werburghs van

4.  It’s Easton again. Not a van, an ambulance but this stick on lettering is good enough to get it an entry here. It’s taken food to the needy and it’s earnt it’s place

easton van

5. Edge of Easton by the M32 and its festival food van me thinks, looking at the mud it’s picked up on the underside. Would be nice to snap it with the pizza smoking out the unseen chimney

another easton van

6. St Paul’s. This one was camouflaged for the area

van in st pauls

7. Same artist as Pizza truck so this one must be fam

van in bristol

8. St Werburghs again. This one really has some landscape length to it. Who does those dinos?

another st werburghs van in bristol

9. My fave, and popular with the owner. My dog sighs did this and instead of eyes following you round the room it’s eyes following you round the city. Kobra street art to the right from Upfest and of all the shots of vans this one is the most pleasing to my eye. Deffo a Basquiat thing going on here

kobra street art van

10? Go look around these postcodes and find it… Take your pick

Do you know any of the artists? Tell us in the comments or tweet me @MoodyColin and let me know

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