River Grille, Bristol, UK

20191129_2006022499459107528419757.jpgA night away always means a nice meal out, this is the part of any trip that gets left to Mark, he’s the foodie and I just tag along for the ride.

With plans to visit the Bath Christmas Market on the Saturday and there being’ no room at the inn’ in Bath, we were forced to seek shelter in Bristol ( see what I did there?)

The River Grille, underneath the Bristol Hotel, is where Mark decided was a must eat.  The restaurants overlooks the harbour through floor to ceiling, wall to wall windows making it all feel sophisticated and romantic. Christmas had taken over, lights twinkled from both inside the restaurant and from the Christmas market on the opposite bank, this made me all smiley inside and started my festive feeling.

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We were shown to a table with crisp linen and sparkling glassware, there was a low hush, diners spoke ‘ sotto vocce’ as did the waiting staff accented by the odd chink of cutlery. Despite the fact it was dark outside, the room was flooded with light, there was a real sense of space with the extreme height of the ceiling.

img_20191130_090656_9228264538630285013285.jpgWe began with a crisp glass of bubbles, celebrating nothing more than life itself.

I started with Grilled aubergine, warm peperonata, garlic, and herb dressing. It was so elegantly presented I didn’t want to disturb it. Aubergines are by far my most favourite vegetable, I love them any way they arrive served. They are a big staple in Italy and I grew up eating them.

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Mark enjoyed Autumn game mosaic, caramelised onions, toasted brioche. 20191129_2011532779048620978178865.jpg

The vegetable elements were delicious and perfectly cooked but he wasn’t so impressed with the flavours in the mosaic.

I then followed up my starter with the Seafood skillet: prawns, scallops, octopus, squid, mussels, cooked in a smoked paprika sauce and served with garlic bread. I’m a massive fan of seafood and shellfish I always feel incredibly sophisticated eating it but in reality, I end up with messy fingers and its elegancy is then lost. There was an ample amount of meat on the plate, with the side of tender stem broccoli and the generous pieces of garlic bread: I was unable to finish it.

Mark’s main was Braised beef cheek, with mashed potatoes, grated horseradish jus, also served with broccoli, the meat was tenderly cooked and just melted in the mouth. A very hearty option.

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We both admitted we’d had our fill of food and couldn’t possibly entertain dessert. , but had room to squeeze in a coffee because no meal is complete without it. The bubbles I’d been sipping all evening had travelled to the head and the legs and I hoped the coffee would supply the little sober up I needed.

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Once I spotted liqour coffee on the menu a straight forward sensible coffee was out the question. I love an Irish coffee – it’s my favourite- just the thing to make my legs even more wobbly than they already were.  A little sober up is not what I got so it was off to bed to sleep the bubbles away.

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