“Although it describes itself as a bar and grill, the Cowshed is about much more than simply steaks. The menu covers all bases, with eight starters and eight main courses before you even look at the list of steaks on offer.” Mark Taylor, Bristol Post
After a rather long and somewhat complicated journey from Paris-London-Bristol using various modes of transport, we arrived wearily (well me, who drove and sang to the strains of late night Heart radio, while the either three slept) at 1am ready for the eldest’s Graduation the next day. As the proud day dawned, extended family arrived and we set off for the first stop of our days entertainment schedule, Graduation lunch.
The Cowshed Bar and Grill located on White Ladies Road in Bristol
I had booked our pre-ceremony meal at The Cowshed Bar and Grill, the popular upmarket venue recommended by several people and located on White Ladies Road in the Clifton area of the city. From first impressions from the exterior to the contemporary interior and the menu options, The Cowshed delivered on every aspect. Owner Adam Denton has brought his unique concept of ‘the countryside to the city’ to Bristol in 2009 after identifying a gap in the city’s restaurant market. Channelling the Cotswold Pub theme, exposed brick walls and flagstone flooring sit alongside solid wood tables, glass, chrome, large chalk boards and old-fashioned chandeliers. The staff were friendly, welcoming and oh so accommodating as we came and ate in shifts, some of us dived off to the cathedral for the graduation ceremony and second son was delayed on the train from London.
The Chef’s Table (source:www.thecowshedbristol.com)
We were lucky to be seated at the Chef’s table for our celebration lunch which is situated in front of the kitchen, right at the heart of all the action. Although bustling it was not too noisy that it drowned out conversation, an aroma of fantastic smells originated and it great to see the chefs at work in an exposed kitchen which always fills me with confidence. As well as the quite quirky three course set Graduation Menu we could also choose from the a la carte lunch menu.
Down from the Chefs Table to the bar area (source:Cowshed Bar and Grill facebook)
Starters were ordered and the eldest consumed his Warm Chorizo, New Potatoes & Cherry Tomatoes rapidly as he had to leave to get his gown and mortar board. My Grilled Asparagus with Button Mushroom, Hollandaise Sauce & Toasted Brioche was delicious and well presented, lots of appreciative noises were murmured around the table as other starters arrived and eaten.
My mother-in-law opted for the three course Graduation Menu with Moules Mariniere and crusty bread to start, Monk-fish, Fat chips ( I may have ‘shared’ a few of those, very yummy and moorish), Peas and Tartar sauce and Vanilla Baked Cheesecake to finish. As we dashed off after the other half finished his Seabass which was the whole grilled fish of the day option, the rest of the family unit enjoyed a much more leisurely lunch and the general consensus was that both the food and service were fantastic. The teenager had the Homemade Cowshed Burger, which she concluded would feature high on her one woman burger tasting survey back in Abu Dhabi (high praise indeed).
The Cowshed is famous for its meat (source:www.thecowshedbristol.com)
The deserts sounded amazing and I am informed that they were, a reason to go back and sample them for myself me thinks. The Cowshed is known for its steaks and Sunday Roasts but it offers so much more with a selection of vegetarian options, a daily fish special, and a tempting range of desserts . There is a ‘Steak on Stone’ option where you can select and cook your own meat on a lava rock to exactly how you like it and a three-course lunch menu (available 12.00-3pm) for a very reasonable £10.
The other half’s Seabass
Overall, I can thoroughly recommend the whole experience at The Cowshed, from booking by e-mail (special mention to Fiona) from Abu Dhabi, receiving the Graduation Menu in advance, accommodating our needs on a busy day, to the actual delicious good, simple British food served in a wonderful setting. If you are looking for a great place to dine in Bristol, you can’t go wrong with The Cowshed.
Where traditional pub meets Gastro Pub (source:www.thecowshedbristol.com)
The Cowshed expanded in 2013 when it was given permission to enlarge the restaurant to double its size into the front area of the derelict White Ladies Picturehouse next door. All the food is sourced from local suppliers including Ruby & White Butchers located next to the restaurant (also owned by Denton), Wing of St Mawes (Seafood), The Orchard Pig (cider), Hallgarten (Wines) and the Clifton Coffee Company among others.
Entrepreneur Adam Denton who opened The Cowshed Bar & Grill in 2009 (source:bristolpost.co.uk)
Location: 46 Whiteladies Rd, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 2NH
Telephone: 0117 973 3550
Read more about Bristol from my previous post ‘Gert Lush’ here
Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2014. All rights reserved.