Three Foodie Attractions You Must Try in Bristol, England

Bristol, located in South West England is a centre for local food initiatives in the United Kingdom. Their Food Policy Council is dedicated to ensuring the people of Bristol have food that is healthy, delicious, good for the environment, affordable, and profitable to the people who grow it. In June of 2012, they are hosting the first ever Food Conference in the UK, as well as the largest farmer’s market in the UK.

During your stay in Bristol, you will have a veritable cornucopia of culinary delights from which to choose. You can stay for a week, and eat every meal at a different award-winning restaurant. However, there are three foods that you absolutely must try while you are in Bristol.

Sweet Treats

First, visit Guilbert’s Chocolates Ltd. In business for over 100 years, they are located in the oldest commercial building in Bristol, a short distance away from the Bristol Hotel. The Foster rooms, the new location of Guilbert’s Chocolates, were the home of John Foster, a merchant during the 15th century. Guilbert’s makes all of its chocolate by hand, using the same methods (with a few updates for electricity) as when they were originally founded. You can buy boxed collections, or select individual chocolate creams, truffles or fondants before deciding which treats are your favourites.

Locally Eats

The second thing to try is not a single food, but rather, a category of food. Bristol is extremely active in the local foods movement for many reasons; they are active in:

  • Encouraging the use of locally-grown, sustainable food
  • Hosting a range food-based events
  • Urban food producing initiatives

If you would like to browse through the selection of fresh local foods available, you can visit one of Bristol’s farmer’s markets held every Wednesday or the first Sunday of the month. Locally-sourced food is also used in many eateries, including several Bristol hotel restaurants. To go one step further than simply locally-grown food, you can also dine at The Lido Restaurant, the Glassboat Restaurant, and Spyglass, each of which share a garden dedicated for use in their delectable dishes. The Lido Restaurant, for instance, creates ever-changing menus based upon what the garden produces. You can learn more about environmentally sound cooking at the restaurant and cooking school, Bordeaux Quay.

Pie, Please

The third food to be sure you must try while in Bristol is pie. Yes, I said pie. Bristol loves its pies, having two locations of the popular Pieminister restaurant and shop. They offer a wide variety of meat pies, vegetarian pies, seasonal pies, and sweet pies which make for excellent eat-in or take-out lunches, dinners, or desserts. But if you can try only one pie, you should make sure to try the classic sweet pie, the toffee apple pie. The Old City location of Pieminister is located near both Guilbert’s Chocolates and the Bristol Hotel, although after eating both sweets, you may want to take a roundabout route back to your hotel to walk off all those calories.

Bristol Attractions

Bristol Attractions

The city of Bristol offers many different diverse attractions. Due to its growth and development, many tourists choose Bristol as their desired destination for a week or weekend break. The Victoria Square Hotel situated in the heart of Clifton village, offers ideal accommodation whilst exploring the numerous attractions available in Bristol.

Bristol zoo

Among one of the many attractions that Bristol has to offer is Bristol Zoo Gardens. Having been awarded “Zoo of the Year 2004”, the 12-acre site in Clifton is an ideal day out for anyone enjoying a weekend break in Bristol. The zoo its self is ran by the Bristol, Clifton and West of England Zoological Society Ltd and has a continuous reputation for excellence, innovation, and dedication to conservation. Excluding the London, Bristol Zoo is the fifth oldest zoo in the world. Why not add this major tourist attraction to your “to do list” when staying in Bristol.

Architecture

An eclectic combination of architectural styles can be found in and around Bristol, the largest city in South West England. From Medieval to 20th century brutalism, a wide range of styles are present along with buildings from most of the architectural periods of the United Kingdom. Large Tudor mansions can be found outside Bristols historical city centre. The construction of the floating harbour has been a pivotal point for industrial development and growth. Some of the structural highlights include the Isambard Kingdom Brunel designed Clifton Suspension Bridge and the British Empire and Commonwealth Museum.

Shopping

When it comes to shopping, you really are spoilt for choice in Bristol. Just outside Bristol City Centre is The Mall at Cribbs Causeway. Consisting of 135 top name stores and 7000 free parking spaces, The Mall is a dynamic, easily accessible shopping venue. If you have chosen a centrally located Bristol Hotel then the newly developed Cabot Circus is idea for browsing the retail stores. After recently being awarded the retail and leisure industry`s BCSC (British Council of Shopping Centres) Supreme Gold Award, Cabots Circus has gone from strength to strength also landing the joint gold for best “In Town Retail Scheme of more than 30000 square feet”. Facilities include over 120 stores, cafes, restaurants and a deluxe cinema.

Despite the recession, the economy in Bristol is sustaining it growth and development. Bristol accommodation and hotels are thriving on tourists looking for weekend breaks in Bristol and professionals looking for business accommodation. This is due to the cities diverse flexibility offering a historic feel along with a developing social and economic scene.

Twenty20 – Sustainable Cricket?

This week has been a bad one for the newest form of our most dearly beloved game. It seemed that 2008 was the absolute watershed moment for the T20 format. The first season of the IPL, the Stanford Millions competition in the West Indies, and of course the T20 World Cup, won, appropriately, by India. But 2009, and particularly this past week, has proved a real test for the form known as ‘Hollywood Cricket’

The man at the center of all of this is the American businessman Allan Stanford. Back in 2008 Stanford famously rolled into the home of cricket, Lords, with a basket full of money, and won quick friends.

His inaugural tournament, at the ground named in his honor in Antigua, saw a bunch of West Indian teams, play the best County side in England, and the England cricket team itself. From the get-go the competition had the real feeling of a farce. Why were West Indian players playing for a team called Stanford Superstars? Why would a national team involve itself in what was set-up as a franchise competition? The answer was of course the mighty dollar…in fact $20 Million or so.

The first sign of problems should have been that the game of cricket was being sold-out to a man who professed to have no interest in the actual game. But the cash strapped West Indians, and for some reason the Poms, jumped straight into bed with the Texan. Another sign of the problems with Stanford was the extraordinary footage of the billionaire cavorting with the English players wives during a competitive game.

But still, although the players made it clear that the situation was becoming increasingly uncomfortable, the lure of the mighty T20, and the dollars that came with it were too much to refuse.

When word first came out last week that Stanford’s millions were in fact based largely on fraud, it really should have come as no surprise. Suddenly the egg on the face of cricket administrators was so apparent, that even they couldn’t shrug it off. Much has now been written about the incredible lengths that the game will go to, to attract corporate funding. The cash cow of T20 was previously unquestioned. Now, of course, the Stanford Millions will be called off, and reports suggest that many of the West Indian players had been talked into investing their prize money back into Stanford’s fraudulent business practices, thus they now had not even the dollars to show for it.

Another blow to T20 is the increasing range of players who are nominally pulling out of the upcoming IPL tournament. Already Australian stars Mitchell Johnson and Michael Clarke have reaffirmed their disinterest with the competition, and now Ricky Ponting, who was admittedly quite poor for the Kolkata Knight Riders, has pulled out. With the cricket schedule so packed, it is increasingly going to be a conscience call for players juggling monetary and national interests. In fact, speaking of juggling, what is to be said of the England cricket team, who heard of their upcoming riches after they had been allowed to be involved in the IPL, and then subsequently got skittled for 51 by one of the weakest teams in the world. Surely players are now seeing that perhaps the juggling act is increasingly difficult. What seemed easy money is now certainly something else.

T20 came around incredibly quickly. Sure it has had a life at English county level for quite some time, but the fact we had an international world cup and the inaugural franchise competition so soon after the game’s inception, is extraordinary. I wonder about the true longevity of the shortest game. The games are certainly exiting, but there is little room for subtlety or intrigue, players either smash it and get a boundary, or smash it and get out. If one of the major arguments against ODI’s has been their sameness, surely the same is only multiplied in T20. For every ‘David Warner’ Moment, there is a myriad of relative sameness. Smash…Six…Smash…Out.

As money dries up worldwide the only real incentive to be involved in the game will diminish also. So far there are no real outcomes to one-off International T20’s as we have seen between Australia and South Africa and New Zealand, this summer. These games are almost International Friendlies, as the main attraction for the game has been the IPL and its riches. But, as I stated, if the dollars dry up, or are lost in fraudulent situations such as that of Allan Stanford, then not only will the administrators have to think about the real purpose of the game, but they will also have to question their decision-making before they jump into bed with any gung ho businessman with a buck.