Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Bristol's hidden gems

Bristol is full of hidden gems. Regular readers will know that I have a series of posts dedicated to showcasing my favourite haunts, but here’s a round-up of my current faves:

The food here is utter perfection, and it turns me into the greediest girl going. I would eat and eat and never stop, given the chance, so it’s lucky this place is so packed you have to call weeks ahead to get a table. Proper Spanish tapas, wall-to-wall cava, and a buzzy bar make Bravas my number one place to eat in Bristol.

Royal Fort Gardens
As a child, I played in these gardens, owned by the University of Bristol, in all seasons. I have strong memories of sledging down the slope, narrowly avoiding the iced-over pond at the bottom, and there are albums full of photographs of my brother and I playing in the brick-lined sculpture park tucked away around the back. With beautiful Baroque, Palladian and Rococco buildings rising up at the top of the hill, it’s a truly charming refuge at the heart of the city.

The Old Bookshop
Cocktails in a cosy, converted bookshop? These are not words to say lightly to a boozy, bookish type. The Old Bookshop offers guaranteed good times: a short but exciting food menu, ace tunes, great drinks, and a jolly vibe makes for one helluva night.

You can tell everything about a deli by its range of olives and cakes, I reckon, and Papadeli scores tops on both. The staff are amazingly knowledgeable and friendly, the shop and cafes (there are two) are fresh and bright, and the food – the food! – is proper picnic perfection.

Something Else
For anyone who’s ever dreamed of owning a shop, Something Else is equal parts heaven and hell. Heaven, as it’s everything you’d want a shop to be, and hell, because you didn’t get there first. Packed with independent magazines, artworks, interesting stationery, and cool bits and bobs, Something Else is run by supercool couple, Sidonie and Kyle, who also run their graphic design business (Something Good) from the other side of the counter.

This place is so new I haven’t yet visited! But it’s on my list, as it’s the newest neighbourhood restaurant on my patch. Pared back décor caught my attention each time I walked past during its development, and a simple menu in the window has whetted my appetite enough to book a table in the next couple of weeks. I will report back!

Stylist and Links of London asked me to share my hidden gems of Bristol as part of their Hidden Gems campaign - add your own hidden gem for your chance to win £1000 of Links of London jewellery. The rules are simple:
1. Take a photo or write about your favourite place to go in your city
2. Upload it to Twitter @Links_of_London or Instagram @linksoflondon
3. Hashtag your post #linkshiddengems

Written in association with Links of London;
as usual, all words are my own.

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