If there’s one thing Bristol is great at, it’s vegetarian food. There’s a huge variety of restaurants, bars & cafes that harness a range of cultures & styles, putting together some truly inspirational vegetarian cuisine. Kim Clayden, blogger over at Bristol Vegetarian, explores places to eat in Bristol from a vegetarian perspective & shows us how to eat around the city for a day, veggie style. So whether you’re vegetarian or not, pick a day – any day – and hit up these places…
There’s a wealth of decent vegetarian breakfasts to be had in Bristol, but for my money, you can’t beat Café Grounded’s scrambled eggs on olive ciabatta with tomatoes, lemon and goats cheese. With branches in Bedminster, Brislington, Redfield and Gloucester Road, wherever you start your day you’ll be well-placed for a potter round delis or charity shops galore! However, if you plump for the Gloucester Road café, you can check out the Amnesty Book Store and the Olive Shed Deli, and even pick up a vegan cake or savoury pastry at the Spotless Leopard for elevenses.
Head downhill all the way into town, and then take lunch at Roll for the Soul – the salad platter is my recommendation – or, if food on the go is more your thing, hit up St Nick’s Market – you cannot go wrong with a haloumi and roast veg flatbread from Matina’s or a falafel salad box from Eat a Pitta. If it’s sunny, enjoy either of the latter in Castle Park, just over the road from the market.
A day in Bristol wouldn’t be a day in Bristol without the inclusion of a pint of cider, so take the scenic route through the harbourside (browsing the Saturday market as you go), and set yourself down at the Apple (aka the cider boat) for a pint of Happy Daze or whatever tickles your fancy.
If you’ve room for a big dinner, hop on the little train from Temple Meads to Easton, and indulge in some imaginative cooking at Maitreya Social – expect three courses for between £25 and £30, depending on your drinks. If you prefer more lively or more casual dining, try the Souk Kitchen or Mud Dock – neither are exclusively vegetarian, but they cater for us herbivores extremely well.
If you’re not in a food coma at this point, end the evening with an exclusive waiter served cocktail at Hausbar at the top of Whiteladies Road, or grab a late night spirit at the Rummer Hotel Bar in St. Nick’s Market.
Disclaimer: Putting this guide together was a difficult task. There are so many fantastic places to eat meat-free in Bristol, with new pop-ups each month, but there’s a limit to how much food one can realistically eat in a day. This culinary meander is where I would go if I had a whole day in which to eat out, bearing in mind a few geographical constraints (but none financial). That said, it’s worth pointing out that Café Kino, on Stokes Croft, also does a fantastic vegetarian/vegan breakfast, Pepe Nero offers more veggie and vegan pizza options that just about anywhere else in town, and newcomer Fi Real will serve you a small but unusual selection of meat-free Caribbean food. Gopal’s Curry Shack is worth hunting down at Whiteladies Road on a Saturday, and the Thali Café (various branches across the city) is a vegetarian staple. Like fine dining on a Sunday night? Then book ahead at Wilk’s restaurant Bristol for the five-course vegetable tasting menu.
Kim has been engaging in the Bristol vegetarian scene of a while now & has been living a meat-free life for over 14 years. Her blog, Bristol Vegetarian focuses on where you can find the best vegetarian eateries throughout the city. Focusing on reviewing the venues she visits, expect stories from places such as Mathilda’s Chilli Bar, Edna’s Kitchen & a fantastic leaderboard of the best Sunday Lunch options in Bristol.