Ahh Bristol. The food haven of the South West.
Finding great places to eat in Bristol is not a difficult task; the city is crawling with a delicious mix of fancy restaurant chains and independent gems.
I get asked a lot by fellow Cornishmen and women, overwhelmed with the prospect of seeing all those restaurant brands we don’t get in Cornwall, where I would recommend to eat (I lived there for 2 years), to which my answer is usually:
So much choice, so little time.
Therefore, I have attempted to narrow down my long list of favourite feasteries for the benefit of those with limited time to explore this culinary landscape. I hope this is helpful:
1. Za Za Bazaar
If you’re only in Bristol for a night or a short weekend, this is always my go-to recommendation. With over 2,100 covers, it came to fame as Britain’s largest restaurant in 2011 (whether this is still true or not, I have no idea).
It is dubbed the ‘World Banquet and Bar’ because it has 5 buffet sections for different continents of the world. On a Friday and Saturday night, it sure is busy, but absolutely worth it just to experience the atmosphere and delicious food! Oh, and it’s all-you-can-eat.
It’s also right on the Bristol Waterfront, on the edge of Millennium Square, which in my (possibly biased) opinion is one of the most awesome areas in the city.
In the heart of Cabot Circus, Tampopo is a very convenient choice if you’re out shopping all day or staying near the centre or Broadmead. Thai food is my ultimate favourite cuisine, and Tampopo’s Thai green curry is the best I’ve ever tasted.
You should also try their sorbets if you get the chance (I got some for free when we went on my birthday!); the lychee and coconut flavours are delicious!
3. Siam Angel Cafe
This may be the smallest cafe I’ve ever sat in. With just about five tables squished in there, the atmosphere in Siam Angel cafe is friendly and personal.
I lived practically next door to it for a year, and it became a favourite spot for a hangover cooked breakfast cure! Their full English breakfasts are perfect; generous in size but not greasy at all. I still crave them. The Instagram pic above is the only thing I have to remind me of its greatness.
Weirdly, this quirky little place is also quite well known for its curries, which they serve throughout lunch time and into the evening. I’ve never tried them but I’m sure they’re great too!
4. Gourmet Burger Kitchen
Anyone not from Cornwall may not understand how significant Gourmet Burger Kitchen is. Yes, it is a chain that can be found all around London and Surrey (I was lucky enough to be near one when I lived in Guildford too), and probably other places, but we do not have one any further South than Bristol!
It makes me tear up a little bit when I think about how much I miss GBK. The app on my phone waits hopelessly for the next time it can claim a free burger or a bowl of sweet potato fries. Oh God, the fries. And the monkey nuts. I sure miss those monkey nuts. Cornwall gets minus points from me for not being host to this magical place.
If you’re a regular Bristol visitor (even if only for the massive Primark) or a native Bristolian, I’d love to hear your additions to this list!