A Foodie's Guide to Bristol: Top 6 Unmissable Restaurants

The Olive Shed Cafe
The Olive Shed Cafe | © Mr Standfast / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Oliver Griffin
9 February 2017

Bristol, capital of the Southwest, is fast becoming renowned for its high quality culinary scene. With two Michelin starred restaurants, a number of boutique eateries and a plethora of high quality venues serving international cuisine, Bristol is edging its way up the UK food chain. We’ve updated our previous city guide to bring you 10 more great restaurants serving fantastic meals in the Southwest’s most dynamic city.

The Rummer

Market, Pub, Restaurant, British, Cocktails, Beer, Wine, $$$
The Rummer a historic public house/bar/restaurant in St.Nicholas Market, Bristol, UK. Image shot 2016. Exact date unknown.
The Rummer | © christopher jones / Alamy Stock Photo
The Rummer is a coolly sophisticated, ultra-chic restaurant that everyone should experience at least once – if they can find it. Situated a stone’s throw from Bristol’s historic St. Nicholas’ Market, the entrance to The Rummer is shrouded in heavy velvet curtains, watched by mindful door staff that prevent rowdy revellers from trying to get to the stellar bar. Mains include salted duck, gammoned pork, and fish stew, with luxurious desserts such as strawberries and cream (with trimmings) available for pudding. The Rummer’s bar stocks more than 300 premium spirits, and houses an equally impressive wine list. Come for the food, stay for the drinks.

Don Giovanni’s

Restaurant, Italian, $$$
Situated a mere five minute walk from Bristol Temple Meads – the city’s hub train station – Don Giovanni’s is one of Bristol’s oldest Italian restaurants. Family-owned, it is currently run by the supremely talented Andy Firetto and a crack team of chefs and waiters. While serving classic interpretations of Italian and Sicilian mainstays, with pizzas, pastas and grilled meats being plentiful, Don Giovanni’s also prepares a number of daily specials. These are created from locally sourced, seasonal ingredients. Somewhat unexpectedly, Firetto also makes a syrup sponge pudding, served with ice cream, that simply cannot be beaten by any other restaurant.


Bar, Brasserie, Restaurant, French, $$$
Runway East co-working office space in Bristol and The Glassboat Brasserie on Bristol harbourside, Bristol, England, UK
The Glassboat Brasserie | © Jane Tregelles / Alamy Stock Photo
Sat in Bristol’s harbourside, just off of the busy and metropolitan Union Street, Glassboat lies moored in the River Avon. The boat itself is ornately furnished, with dark wooden tables and decking, crisp white table cloths and brass furnishings on the bar. The food served is typical brasserie fare, with grilled and roasted meats, fish, and vegetable being the dish of the day. Diners can look out across the beautiful harbourside and cobbled walkways while eating. As well as an a la carte dinner menu, the Glassboat has a number of options for breakfast and lunch.


Restaurant, British, $$$
Up until 2011, Casamia – an Italian restaurant with a Michelin star – was the only restaurant in Bristol to hold the honour. A small and inconspicuous building, the interior and furnishings change with the coming and going of the seasons. The same goes for the menu. As such, the tasting menu – and subsequent dining experience – differs entirely with each season. Casamia boasts an excellent tasting menu that takes diners on a journey through the finest local produce. The two brothers running the restaurant also have a number of prominent fans, including celebrated chef Gordon Ramsay.

Turtle Bay

Restaurant, Caribbean, $$$
Turtle Bay Restaurant in Bristol City Center
Turtle Bay Restaurant | © Mr Standfast / Alamy Stock Photo
What could be nicer than a bit of Caribbean soul in the southwest of the UK? Turtle Bay, with its laid-back attitude, rustic atmosphere and simple decoration succeeds in bringing some warmer feelings to this chilly isle. The restaurant serves up classic dishes such as goat curry and jerk chicken, both of which go down exceptionally well with a glass of rum punch. Situated on Broad Quay, near Bristol’s bubbling central district, this is a perfect place to unwind after a busy day of shopping and wandering

The Olive Shed

Restaurant, Mediterranean, European, Spanish, $$$
A walk around Bristol Harbour England UK The Olive Shed Cafe
The Olive Shed Cafe | © Mr Standfast / Alamy Stock Photo
This restaurant is one for fans of Mediterranean fare, that’s for sure. The Olive Shed, hidden away in the backstreets of Princes Wharf, is a treat for the eyes, taste and smell, and offers great views across Bristol’s floating harbour, complete with the SS Great Britain. The food, of course, draws heavily upon influences from Greece, Italy, Spain and Southern France – basically, any country that makes extensive use of this savoury fruit.

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