Michelle Grady enjoys a bite at one of Bristol’s chicest eateries…
Bristol’s harbourside is something of an untapped destination for local foodies, known more for being a tourist trap than a culinary hotspot. Yet a short stroll around Millennium Square reveals a gamut of fabulous bars and restaurants to try, including one of the most stylish of the lot, The Living Room.
I already knew this contemporary restaurant and piano bar serves first-rate cocktails, but I’d never had the opportunity to try their culinary offering – until last Saturday, when myself and a friend took a break from browsing the shops and stopped by for lunch. The decor is every inch what you’d except from a slick city-centre venue – think bare-brick walls, interesting art and sumptuous furnishings. Just the setting for a gossipy lunch with a friend, although it would be an equally lovely venue for a family dinner or romantic meal – while the surroundings feel exclusive, the ambience and service is relaxed and down-to-earth.
Menus at The Living Room change seasonally, and the latest autumn-winter bill of fare had not long ago been launched. Although I expected the usual hearty winter warmers – such as the confit Gressingham duck leg with braised red cabbage and red wine jus – The Living Room played a curveball with the inclusion of more exotic flavours usually associated with the warmer months. I like the idea of lifting a grey afternoon with a dish reminiscent of holidays abroad – for example, my companion (who recently returned from a few months in Sant Feliu in Spain and loves all things Spanish) immediately homed in on the pork and chorizo burger in a brioche bun, with crispy onions and French fries. I plumped for the grilled Moroccan lamb skewers – listed in the ‘under 500 calories’ section of the menu – with couscous and a blend of aromatic herbs and spices, which proved that you can still enjoy a tasty meal without feeling guilty about overindulging. It was not your usual winter feast, granted, but a mood-lifting one nonetheless.
We did treat ourselves to a finale traditionally befitting a chilly day; cockle-warming, beautifully creamy lattes with a dash of amaretto, which my friend described as ‘to die for’, a phrase which pretty much sums up the entire dining experience at The Living Room. Visit the website to check out the latest menus, or follow @thelivingroom_ on Twitter or search for The Living Room Restaurant and Bar on Facebook.