I hope you all enjoyed my previous post all about my fave breakfast spots and are hungry for more super cool places to try when in Bristol. I work in the city centre and therefore each day is a battle to make myself bring a packed lunch in order to avoid the temptation to buy my lunch out. However, it’s safe the say that more often or not my lunchbox is conveniently “forgotten” and I’m faced with the difficult decision of where to eat. Luckily for you, I’ve eaten my way through the best of the best and I’m excited to share them with you here!
My no.1 favourite place to go for a week day lunch in Bristol is St Nick’s market. It’s a bustling hub of independent food stalls serving up some of the finest eats in the city. From Moroccan tagines to pies to liquid nitrogen ice-cream to fresh juices, St Nick’s market has something for everyone. Plus everything is really reasonably priced so it’s the perfect option for an on-the-go lunch. I wish they’d open in the evenings too because the market is home to such a diverse array of food and I think it’d be a lovely place to hang out on a Summer’s evening, but for now, I’ll settle with very frequent lunch time visits. We also finish all of our Stokes Croft to City centre food tours with tasters at the market as it’s the perfect place to leave visitors to the city free to browse the cobbled streets full of hidden foodie treasures. Anyway, enough fan girling over the market itself, lets get down to details..
Eat-a-pitta – When I think of Bristol food one of the first thing that springs to mind is falafel and in my humble opinion, Eat-a-pitta are serving the best. You will be wowed by their impressive mountains of colourful salads and they even hand out free falafels to try during service so you can try before you buy..or nibble whilst your queue! The falafel salads are extremely good value for money and you can also buy just falafels and humous too if preferred (but the salads are so tasty you’d be a fool not to include them). The falafel recipe used is a family recipe that has been handed down through the generations producing falafel that’s crispy on the outside and moist in the middle.
Dish recommendation: Classic falafel in a box with all the salads and a pitta on the side. My favourite sauce is either the aioli or the lemon olive oil. Pictured above.
Opening times: Monday to Friday 11am-4.15pm, Saturday 11am-5pm (St Nick’s stall – they also have other stands in Broadmead and a cafe with an upstairs seating area on Gloucester road which are both open later)
Eatchu – If you have been on the look out for some delicious Japanese dumplings, then Eatchu is the place to go! They use a fry, boil, fry method meaning that the gyozas have a crispy fried outside and soft and flavourful centre. They do a whole range of meaty and vegan flavours which are sold in 6 piece portions and then you get to pimp them out with different sauces and toppings. They also sell sticky rice, miso soup, shoyu eggs and edamame. Eatchu are based inside on Exchange ave. but have an outside seating area which is a perfect place to stop and rest your feed after a busy day of exploring!
Dish recommendation: 6 pieces of spinach & tofu with tonkatsu sauce, enoki mushrooms and shichimi sea salt plus a tray of sticky rice. I can’t remember what flavour the gyozas pictured above are because I’m a novice blogger but they all look this good, that is something I can guarantee!
Opening times: Monday to Saturday 11:30am-3pm
Matina – Matina serve the best wraps I’ve ever had. I can only clumsily describe them as delicious soft warm pillows and a cross between a giant pitta bread, wrap and naan bread. They always have the biggest queue in the market and once you’ve eaten one, you’ll see why! This Middle Eastern food stall is unfussy and tasty. Their options include: chargrilled chicken, marinated lamb, a mix of the two or halloumi & roasted vegetables. You then get to choose from a whole load of salads and sauces before it’s wrapped up and handed over! Matina are based really close to Castle park, so I highly recommend grabbing your wrap and finding a spot on the grass to enjoy it. Be warned: These wraps are huge and once you’ve recovered from the first it won’t be long before you’re coming back for more..
Dish recommendation: Halloumi and roasted vegetables with all the salads plus chilli sauce & mayonnaise. Picture above is a meat kebab from Matina by Bristol Post because I’ve tried and failed to get an aesthetic photo of these wraps which does them justice.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday 11am-5pm
Harbourside market – Another of my favourite markets happens in another lovely location in the city, by the water! The Harbourside market started in 2010 with the aim to creative an independent alternative to the high street. Many of Bristol’s food greats start out as a trader the market as it’s a fantastic way to showcase skills & trial new ideas. The traders change from week to week so I can’t guarantee that my recommendations will be there but I have never left the market disappointed so there will always be an array of tasty treats to chose from! They also sometimes have live music and there is always a nice big seating area to enjoy your food before having a wander around the harbour.
The Kitchen – This is a brilliant café to check out (at any time of the day) and is conveniently located right in the city centre of Bristol. Better still, it is run by the YMCA who work with young people, particularly those that have had to deal with difficult things in life to volunteer, get work experience, train and eventually gain employment as chefs, baristas and front of house staff. Their dishes are created using local, seasonal project and they even have an urban garden in the courtyard which they source fruit and vegetables from to use in the kitchen. Top notch!
Dish recommendation: I usually eat their halloumi salad with homemade flatbread and hummus (pictured above) but I also highly recommend visiting on a burger Friday! They have a meat and vegetarian hot special every day and an array of homemade cakes too.
Opening times: Weekdays 9am-5pm
Flour & Ash – I am a firm fan of Flour & Ash and my house is luckily within a 2 minute walking distance from me getting some of that sourdough goodness. Their menu is exciting and ever-changing because they like to keep their ingredients as local and seasonal as possible. They would also be a big recommendation of mine for dinner but due to their pre 6.30pm deal I thought they’d be better suited to this category. They’ve won a whole host of awards for their epic pizzas so I highly recommend you check them out and find out for yourself what makes them the best of the best.
Dish recommendation: Any of the pizzas are going to make you so happy – Chorizo and burrata is pictured above. If you’re extra hungry, I’d highly recommend the parmesan polenta chips to start and one of their homemade ice-creams for pud.
Opening times: Monday – Wednesday 12pm-9.30pm, Thursday – Saturday 12pm-10pm, Sunday 12pm-9pm
Soul Fish – Soul Fish are making waves on Gloucester road for their incredible fish and chips and the hype is more than well deserved. They are committed to using sustainable ingredients and are serving up an epic menu which puts them a step ahead of your average fish and chip shops! Think filled po boy sandwiches, deep fried mac and cheese, collard greens.. They are also hosts to Foozie’s epic hip hop in a chip shop event where they combine old school hip hop with delicious food, what more could you want?!
Dish recommendation: Deep fried halloumi or mac and cheese bites with chips and lemon mayonnaise. Need dessert? DEEP.FRIED.OREOS! (Po boy sandwich photo above by Soul fish).
Opening times: Monday 5pm–9.30pm Tuesday – Thursday 12pm–2.30pm 5pm–9.30pm Friday 12pm–2.30pm
5pm–10.30pm Saturday 12pm–10.30pm Sunday 5pm–9pm.
..& for a Sunday roast? My top choice is currently Yurt Lush who serve banging roast dinners between 12pm and 3.30pm every Sunday. Any roast dinner which comes with a whole load of colourful roasted vegetables and a generous dish of cauliflower cheese gets a big thumbs up from me! A Sunday roast guide may appear at some point on the blog but I wanted to sneak these guys in here too just in case.
I hope that you enjoyed my handy guide to Bristol’s best lunch. I’ll be updating this as I sniff out more and more lunch time favourites so if you have any recommendations, please let me know. Coming next will be a dinner edition (which will no doubt include places that can also be visited at lunch time)!