16 October 2014

The beer tides are turning

For so many years we have been presented with wine lists in restaurants, offered wine flights to go with our tasting menus and suggested glasses of bubbly as “the very best way to start a meal, madam”. The only place you would find customers heartily chugging beer with a meal was your local Indian restaurant.

But now I’m pleased to see that beer’s stock seems to be on the rise.

As a food blogger, I spend a lot of my time eating, photographing and writing about food. I think it’s fair to say that food is a big part of my life. But so is beer. I grew up with parents in the real ale industry, and I don’t go a week without a pint or four.

20 August 2014


I love pizza. I love beer. Beer loves pizza and pizza loves beer. It’s all one big happy family, and a family that is brought to Bristol courtesy of Beerd in Kingsdown.

Beerd is owned by Bath Ales, and has been providing a plethora of local and international brews for some time now. Excitingly, they are also currently running a pop-up in Clifton village for those of you who don’t fancy the walk over (lazy bones). However, as I am also a lazy bones, I prefer to frequent the location that’s simultaneously close to my work and my home. More time for drinking.

6 August 2014

The Townhouse
Set menu

My partner and I often disagree about deals and discounts. When the bottle of wine says “was £14.99, now £8.49”, she will pick it up, content that it’s a bargain. I, perhaps the more cynical of the two of us, will make noises that it probably was never worth fifteen quid in the first place.

What I can’t disagree with however, is real value for money. And that is why I came away feeling supremely content after sampling the early-bird menu at the Townhouse on Whiteladies Road. Three courses for a tenner. Ten pounds!  When I saw that, I decided I need to take my cynicism and give it a damn good go.

22 July 2014


A review of Birch restaurant in Bristol by food blogger, Avon GorgedIf there was an award for the highest proportion of glowing reviews in the shortest period of time, I think Birch restaurant in Southville would probably take home the prize. In the few short weeks since they have opened, I have seen countless reviews highlighting just what a star of a place it is. Bristol folk are lining up to get a piece of the action.

So in order to break with tradition, I am going to start my review with the things I didn't like about Birch. The negatives of my meal and the little niggling annoyances I haven’t been able to let go. So here goes…

On the day I went, my birthday in fact, it was raining. Like end of days raining. And my hair got wet, and lost some of its oomph.

Okay, now that’s the negatives dealt with. Let’s talk about the rest...

18 June 2014

The Glassboat

Review of the Glassboat restaurant in Bristol by Avon GorgedHow do you feel about restaurants on boats? I've thought about this a lot recently (I know, get a life). I used to associate them with slightly weird cafés and dodgy seafood. Admittedly I think this must stem from the ropey one in my home town. But I really haven’t had a great experience thus far.

Thankfully Bristol is awash (haha) with boat restaurants, none of them ropey. And I had the pleasure of visiting Glassboat a couple of weeks ago with my family. I can report it was neither slightly weird nor dodgy. 

In fact, it pretty much smashed it out of the park. Or harbour. Marina? Oh, you get my drift.

6 June 2014

Katie & Kim's Kitchen

Katie and Kim's Kitchen in Montpelier, Bristol by Avon Gorged
I haven’t lived in Bristol for very long. This annoys me because I hear about all these long-lost lovers of Bristol food that I have missed out on. Katie and Kim’s horsebox was one of these things. I’d heard mention of them in relation to the Street Food Awards (they took the title in 2013), but had never had the opportunity to try out their famous grub.

That was until last week, when I visited their newly opened (and permanent) café on Picton Street in Montpelier. Finally I had the chance to sample the goods!

And oh, how good they were…

13 May 2014

Bakers & Co

A review of Bakers & Co by Bristol food blogger, Avon GorgedYou guys know I like brunch right? In fact, I love it. It has all the best things about breakfast, but with the added enjoyment of a lie-in. Thankfully Bristol has a fair amount of options for those of us looking for our mid-morning food fix. You can choose from nearly any cuisine in any area of the city and not be disappointed. The problem with this however is that when opening somewhere new, you have to be pretty special to stand out.

And that is just what Bakers & Co is hoping to do. The ‘San Francisco style’ café opened on Gloucester Road in March to a whole host of anticipation. Brought to us by the people behind the hugely successful Bravas on Cotham Hill, the Bristol community’s expectations were sky high. I visited a few weeks after opening, to see if it could live up to the hype.

8 April 2014

Mathilda's Chilli Bar

When I heard that a new chilli restaurant was opening in the Bearpit, I knew this was somewhere I was going to try very hard to love. I think it’s the attraction of a restaurant that is confident enough to serve one thing. Mathilda’s Chilli Bar serves chilli. Admittedly it comes in two varieties, but that’s about it. Like chilli? Go to Mathilda’s. Don’t like chilli? Don’t. It’s as simple as that.

And speaking of simplicity, Mathilda’s is definitely setting out its stall in terms of décor. Black walls, white tiling and tea-lights in treacle tins are about as decorated as it gets (if you discount the row of tiny cacti and Tabasco sauce bottles above the kitchen). The effect is striking.

26 March 2014

The Stable

The Stable opened on the Bristol Harbourside last year, with a promise of ‘pizza, pies and cider’. A West Country chain, they have five venues across the South-West, with a new location in Newquay due to open next month. They focus on South-West producers, and there are plenty of local name-checks to keep a Bristol food-lover happy.

The Stable is an impressively large restaurant, with huge wooden sharing tables and a vast bar which dominates the area. The venue is referred to as a ‘Cathedral to Cider’ which suggested to me that this was a place where the drink might be more important than the grub.

13 March 2014

The Ox

The Ox Bristol steak restaurant by food blogger, Avon Gorged
I have a bone to pick with The Ox restaurant. It’s only been open a couple of months and yet it is responsible for a surge of food photography which quite frankly, on a Monday morning I could do without. Instagram is suddenly full of rare steaks. I can barely get on Twitter without seeing photos of huge home-cooked chips and delicious things on toast. It’s a good job I have my own office because it’s really not acceptable to drool at your desk.

After several weeks of torture therefore, I decided it was no good. I was going to have to try this out for myself. And so I took my big slobbery chops and got stuck in.