To celebrate this year’s Food Connections, Shonette Laffy of foodie blog ‘A Life Less Organised‘ is taking us on a virtual tour of feel-good eateries around Bristol. Here are a few local businesses which, she believes, will give you the warm and fuzzies just as much for their ethics as they do their tasty wares…
Newly expanded to include a London location, this relaxed tapas bar is still incredibly passionate about the ethics cultivated for its first restaurant on Stokes Croft, including sourcing 90% of ingredients within the UK, and recycling 90% of refuse. Pop in during the day for a leisurely Mediterranean-inspired brunch, or swing by in the evening for some top notch tapas and one of its lush seasonal cocktails.
St Paul’s Cafe
A great community venture from the wonderful bunch at Surplus Supper Club, St Paul’s Cafe is based at the heart of the community in the St Paul’s Learning Centre, staffed by volunteers and serving a menu of tasty food which would otherwise end up in a bin. Support them in the quest to tackle food waste and food poverty,whilst nabbing a nice bit of cake – everyone’s a winner!
What could be more feel-good than a yurt? Well, in addition to the super cosy setting, Yurt Lush also has a menu (including a great Sunday roast and a bargain steak night) mostly sourced from within the South West, much of it provided by locals The Community Farm and The Story. As well as focusing on a short supply chain, the standard of food here is excellent, but you’d expect nothing less from a menu crafted by Michelin-starred Josh Eggleton.
A friendly co-operative in the heart of Stokes Croft; everything on the menu at Cafe Kino is 100% vegan (although they do now give you the option of having dairy milk in your coffee!). The not-for-profit cafe also strives to be a safe and welcoming place not only for customers but for its staff too. The food is homely and healthy, and there’s always an exciting programme of events going on too. A proper local treasure.
The Thali Cafe
One of Bristol’s most well-known local chains, Thali Cafe has made a name for itself nationally by having won so many awards and accolades for its ethical approach. Choose from a mouth-watering menu of both meat and vegetable thalis, or a variety of lighter bites, and be assured that the ingredients are as locally and sustainably sourced as possible. Its tiffin scheme is also a winner (you’re not a proper Bristolian until you own one. Fact!).
Situated in one of the best plots in town, you’ll probably be familiar with this funky bar-restaurant from its lush outdoor seating overlooking the water, or its regular free live music nights. It also briefly played host to the brilliant Tourist Inspiration Station last year and is responsible for the Harbourside Market every weekend. The kitchen serves up an incredible menu with a strong focus around vegetarian & vegan dishes – its dedication to responsible sourcing has won it the highest possible rating from the Sustainable Restaurant Association.
Housed in the old fire station building in the city centre, The Kitchen does so many great things for the local community it’s hard to know where to start. It employs young apprentices from the youth centre next door, hosts community events such as 91 Ways, it operates a suspended coffee scheme, where you can donate money to give a hot beverage to someone who otherwise couldn’t afford it. The menu is a mix of fresh sandwiches, frittatas and hot meals, and the sweet treats are worth the visit alone.
Another great business making the most of food which other businesses have thrown away. The Phoenix Cafe is a quirky little place on Pithay near Broadmead which serves up an ever-changing fresh menu of treats and usually has a fun event going on to boot, whether it’s a craft evening, board games night or gig. Tackling food waste in the tastiest and most fun way possible – definitely add this place to your list.