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Bristol, a foodie’s guide to surviving January this year

Congratulations reader, you made it! You’ve stepped blinking into 2019 feeling perhaps a little pressured into self “improvement”. If you’re looking for meals that are a little lighter and a little more plant focussed to repent for your Quality Street for breakfast sins a few weeks ago, you’ve come to the right article. We don’t believe in New Years Resolutions but we do believe in great food so have a look at some of the January blues busting dishes on the pass this month. 

Falafel King – Batata Salad

Falafel King is the bastion of veggie and vegan eating in Bristol, serving wraps, pittas and plates stuffed full of fresh and exciting salads, crunchy falafel and lashings of houmous.

The batata salad takes sweet potato, crunchy veggies such as cabbage and carrots, tangy feta and sweet mixed seeds, adds a few other favourites and dresses it with olive and lemon. The fact it’s a salad shouldn’t put you off, this will have you full up, smacking your lips and not feeling like you’ve had to compromise on taste. Eat in for the full middle eastern experience.

The Mint Room – Vegan set menu

When it comes to Indian dining, The Mint Room is up there with the best of them and has a trophy cabinet to prove it. To appeal to those who have jumped on the #Veganuary bandwagon, or just prefer their food to not have a face, they have created a sumptuous meat and dairy free menu to tempt even the most hardline carnivore.

You start with crispy Papdi Chat with yogurt, pomegranate and tamarind chutney and then launch into warming biryani made with rice and seasonal veggies with a dollop of raita to cool the spices. A plate of mouthwatering bombay potatoes and a side of a dhal are also thrown into the mix to create the ultimate winter warmer. Guilt free eating never tasted so good!

Photo credit: @foodieinbristol

Quay Street Diner – live fire cooking

From the brains that brought you Grillstock comes Quay Street Diner, but don’t let that put you off if you’re avoiding meat this month. Specialising in live fire cooking, these guys have plenty on the menu to excite you without feeling like you’re settling.

We love their padron peppers, flame licked from the grill and with a kick from the smoked salt, you won’t want to share these. Their grilled butternut shows that these great vegetables have more to offer than soup. Grilled and served with coconut harissa, bulgar wheat, pine nuts, pomegranate, pesto and seeds, this dish is a tour de force of flavour and texture that will have you wondering where it’s been all your life.

Salt Street – Big sandwiches

Whilst Leon, owner of Salt Street knows his way around a cuban sandwich, he hasn’t forgotten about those who love things that go between two slices of bread but don’t eat meat.

Winning in the taste and texture department you could be tucking into a soft cuban roll stuffed with beautifully fried and seasoned aubergine and drenched in a house made marinara sauce. Add a slab of mozzarella and you’ve got the sort of sandwich you won’t stop craving.

Pizzarova – Pizza!

If you like your pizza we are sure you’ve been to one of Pizzarova‘s great restaurants and built some great ones. With Pizzarova letting you go as mad as you like with toppings (or guiding you by the hand with their monthly specials) you have plenty of choice when it comes to ordering.

Keep it meat free with plenty of veggies and cheese (or vegan cheese) for ten out of ten pizza made the way you want.  Personally we love ours with peppers, chillies, onions, feta and a pot of their garlic mayo dipping sauce for the crusts. Those crusts can even be gluten free if you want!

Bandook Indian Kitchen – Indian dishes

Giving your body a break shouldn’t mean your tastebuds should miss out, so we highly recommend a trip to Bandook for a good veggie belly stuffing. Settle into their intimate quay-side restaurant and take a trip around India via your mouth.

We recommend the ultimate Indian mashup, the Bandook chaat, a zesty, sweet and savoury dish with samosas and chickpeas to start and a main of their Baingan Moilee. This wholesome and comforting curry is made with baby aubergines cooked in spices and simmered in coconut milk then served with mashed potatoes rather than rice. Don’t forget to order some bread for mopping at the end!

And for those who have decided January is hard enough already…

Buttermilk and Maple – EVERYTHING ON THE MENU!

Not only are the cocktails and drinks offerings at Buttermilk and Maple glorious, the food menu is mouth wateringly delicious with a smorgasbord of cheesy, fried, meaty goodness that really is the only way we’re going to get through January without losing hope.

Tuck into their fried chicken, labour over their lobster mac and cheese, and try and get your mouth around the towering burgers packed with bacon and paired with crispy fries. Make sure you order a whole host of sides to put you into a food coma to beat the one you enjoyed on Christmas day.

Whatever direction you choose, make sure you book though Eat Early to save up to 50% on Bristol and Taunton’s best restaurants.