Colston Hall, The O2 Academy and Bristol Hippodrome are all within a stone’s throw of each other in central Bristol. On a typical Friday or Saturday night, there could be upwards of 6000 people looking for a great dinner before going on to one of these venues.
We’ve all heard of Turtle Bay, directly opposite the Hippodrome with its cheap, quick Caribbean cuisine and fantastic 2-4-1 cocktails. However, we thought we’d let you know of some great venues nearby that might not automatically spring to mind.
Opposite The Bristol Hotel, the newly opened Prince Street Social has a fantastic spacious interior with exposed brickwork, industrial lighting and reconditioned benches. It can easily seat 130 people at a time so you needn’t worry about booking ahead. The staff are polite and attentive and the food is stylishly presented and delivered in a timely manner. I cannot speak highly enough of the cocktails which are beautifully prepared and different from your standard Cosmo or Margarita.
Best choice for: relaxing with friends visiting Bristol
An authentic Italian restaurant just along Baldwin Street, Europa is tucked out of the way with a lovely outdoor seating area, perfect for a summer’s evening. You can never go wrong with good-quality Italian cuisine and your hosts will look after you, attending to your every need.
Best choice for: taking the parents
On the end of Baldwin Street by Bristol Bridge sits the Glassboat, offering two courses of French-inspired cuisine for £16.50 or three for £21. The views along the river are stunning; it is the perfect place to sit and watch the world go by. The staff are smartly dressed and knowledgeable on the food served. They’ll be happy to suggest the perfect wine to complement your meal.
Best choice for: a summer evening
If you like the sound of Italian cuisine but are looking for somewhere a little more contemporary, try Aquila just across the road. With pristine white tablecloths, glittering lighting and cutlery, reflected in glass and mirrors throughout, the restaurant is beautifully decorated and is extremely spacious. The food presented immaculately and attention to detail is the key here.
Best choice for: couples
This cocktail bar boasts the best and largest spirit collection in the region and their bartenders are ranked among the best in the country. Although they do not have a specific pre-theatre menu and the dishes are a little more expensive than the others it’s still well-worth visiting. If you’re looking to celebrate a special occasion, there really is no better place.
Best choice for: special occasion
Pretty Rosemarino’s second site can be found on Denmark Street and serves authentic Italian cuisine. They have won a number of awards throughout the years, understandably tempting clients back time and time again. Right on the doorstep of all of the venues it is always a safe and delicious choice. We do however strongly recommend making a reservation in advance as the weekends do tend to get rather busy.
Best choice for: a family meal
Not only is the food fantastic (the clue is in the name), the venue and the dining booths themselves are works of art. If you haven’t been here before, make sure you book now. This place really is a meat-lovers dream, but veggies will be well-catered for too.
Best choice for: meat lovers
Pizza and cider: need we say more? If you’re heading out with a group of friends this is the perfect choice. The decor is rustic with long banqueting tables and the atmosphere is always buzzing. You’ll be spoilt for choice by the huge range of pizzas and other dishes available.
Best choice for: dining with a group of friends