The Clifton Triangle is a busy stretch of road that has the feel of a mini town centre, as well as being the junction that separates several of the city’s various suburbs.
Dominating the skyline is the Hogwarts-esque Wills Memorial Building. About turn, and you’ll glimpse the top of the Cabot Tower on Brandon Hill. This pretty park provides panoramic views over Bristol, and its hills are a great place to work up an appetite. Good thing there are several excellent restaurants to choose from when you’ve made your way back down…
Friska serves up feel-good food with a focus on fresh and responsibly sourced ingredients. You’ll find healthy, hearty dishes, such as butternut and black bean dopiaza hot pot, Vietnamese pho noodles and grilled halloumi and roast vegetable hot wrap. It’s also a nice spot for coffee and cake, with an independent shop upstairs if you’re in the mood for browsing.
Friska, 70 Queen's Road, Bristol BS8 1QU
Grillstock is an annual festival of ‘meat, music and mayhem’, which takes place down at the Harbourside one weekend each summer. Their first restaurant was born out of popular demand for a permanent Grillstock location, and the brand will soon have other smokehouses around the country, as well as an additional festival location in Manchester. Expect moody lighting and all American, belly filling BBQ goodness.
Grillstock, 41 Triangle W, Bristol BS8 1ER
Rocotillos is a cosy American style diner renowned for its thick, creamy milkshakes and US-themed breakfast menu. If you don’t order your stack of blueberry pancakes with a side of bacon rashers, you’re doing it wrong.
Rocotillos, 1 Queens Rd, Bristol BS8 1EZ
This lofty limestone building (modelled on the Doge’s Palace in Venice, no less) used to be part of Bristol Museum & Art Gallery next door, before becoming the university dining hall in the forties. It has since been reclaimed as an upmarket Brown’s brasserie and now serves up an excellent Sunday roast, as well as being a delightful spot to grab a cocktail or two.
Brown's, 38 Queens Rd, Bristol BS8 1RE
The London chain has finally come to Bristol, bringing authentic Mexican tastes and a laid back Wahaca vibe. This is Mexican food without the grease: fresh guacamole with lime and coriander, soft, floury tacos stuffed with slow-cooked pork or smoky chicken, and tangy, agave syrup infused margaritas.
Wahaca, 70-78 Queens Rd Bristol BS8 1QU
Byron is another recent arrival from London. Unpretentious but with a gourmet edge, these are burgers done right. Expect squishy buns, juicy meat (cooked however you want) and tangy sauces. Just don’t wear a belt.
Byron, 62 Queens Road, Bristol BS8 1RE
This Argentinian style restaurant opened its doors in 2014 and has since become a firm favourite of steak loving Bristolians. Cau’s unique décor (pristine white banquettes, corrugated steel surfaces, exposed ceiling pipes and sky print walls), mixed with an intimate theatre-style kitchen set-up and creative, tasty dishes adds up to a sophisticated yet fun dining experience.
Cau, 74 Queens Rd, Bristol BS8 1QU
It may be a chain, but Be At One’s cocktail menu rivals some of Bristol’s independent bars for tastiness and creativity. With its loud music and two-for-one deals, it’s the perfect place to unwind after a long day of work or lectures.
Be at One, 55 Queens Rd Bristol BS8 1QQ
Taka Taka is one of many takeaways on the Triangle, but is arguably the best of the bunch. It serves up simple, authentic Greek street food at a very reasonable price. The magic rolls are legendary, but the pork souvlaki and traditional pitta gyros are delicious too.
Taka Take, 1-3 Queens Row, the Triangle Bristol BS8 1EZ
Koh Thai is a unique concept: Thai dishes served tapas style so that you can try a little bit of everything (curries and stir fries are also available as main courses). Expect authentic flavours and fiery South East Asian spices from the Thai cooking team. Add in great service and a sophisticated ambiance, and you’ve got yourself a winning combination.
Koh Thai, 7-9 Triangle South, Bristol BS8 1EY
Hyde & Co is a stylish prohibition-style cocktail bar hidden amongst the many late night eateries along the Triangle’s south side. The creative cocktail list and classy atmosphere mean that you may just stay longer than you planned.
Hyde & Co, The Basement, 2 Upper Byron Pl, Bristol BS8 1JY
Spacious and welcoming, Bill’s does a great breakfast and has a wide range of offerings for later on in the day – from mezze sharing boards to sirloin steaks, as well as a traditional afternoon tea. Its dimmed lighting and pretty décor create pleasant surroundings in which to enjoy your meal.
Bill's, 69 Queens Rd, Bristol BS8 1QL
You’ll also find crowd-pleasers Wagamama, Pret and Cosmo (all you can eat Pan-Asian cuisine), popular bars such as the Brass Pig and Mbargo, and a number of cafés. For late-night snacking pay a visit to the legendary Jason Donervan, a mobile food truck serving up cheesy chips and other student favourites.
Venturing further up the hill? Here are 13 delightful dining destinations on Whiteladies Road.