In celebration of British Roast Dinner Week 26 September - 2 October 2016 Ben Chappell, the founder of Bristol Sunday Roast Club, talks us through his favourites across the city. Over to you Ben.. 

Image - @antimitch

Although I started Bristol Sunday Roast Club as a bit of a laugh with my friends Tom and Oli, it’s now grown to over 1,600 Facebook members (and counting). Obviously Bristolians have a good appetite for the traditional Sunday staple and the group struck a chord pretty quickly. Friends added friends who added yet more friends and before we knew it, we had an online community. It’s a friendly place to chat, banter and review local roasts—whether you’re looking for a quick recommendation when you’re on the Gloucester Road or want to name and shame flat Yorkshires.

It’s a real mix of posters: your average punter after a homely roast, those on the hunt for something a bit more progressive or gourmet, genuine food critics and also the businesses themselves looking to promote and protect their roasts! We’re always on the lookout for new members and new reviews, and while everyone has a slightly different take on what makes the perfect Sunday roast (if there is such a thing), there is a distinct list of venues which get rave reviews time and time again.

1. The Bank Tavern

Bristol's best roast bar none, and also one of the cheapest.  Three courses consisting of cockle and ink risotto or pork and goose offal hash, rare roast cow or rolled pig belly and bitter chocolate and malt tart for a mere £13.50 seems unthinkable. These guys pack friendly flavour into every mouthful, though. A must.

2. The Green Man

"The sun is shining and The Green Man are back in the game. And what a triumphant return from their summer break it is. Opened the door into this roast wonderland and the place was rammed." writes Roast Club regular Wayne England.... "Now here's the game changer. A new addition of 6 cheese cauliflower. Holy heck, by far the best tastiest cauliflower cheese i have ever experienced. ALL OF THIS IS STANDARD FOR THE UNBELIEVABLE PRICE OF 12 POUNDS."

3. The Pipe & Slippers

This place has to go on the list for its consitency over the years (and their Bloody Mary is awesome). Get here for midday on a Sunday and you'll find a near-empty pub serving plenty of flavourful food. Don't let that put you off - I don't. Grab a paper and relax in one of their wing-backed chairs and order the mixed roast. Make sure you're hungry.

4. Hare & Hounds

Co-founding member writes: "Hare & Hounds in Landsdown. Bloody lovely roast, everything was pretty much perfect, apart from us being a bit late in the day, and the roast potatoes were a little bit dry. Other than that, nice beer, epic views and friendly staff and a fair price. 9/10."

5. The Lock Up

The Lock Up is a great little restaurant in the St George area, with a nice modern fresh English vibe to it. It has a lovely relaxed atmosphere with very attentive friendly staff and is well worth a visit. Try the seafood starters for a real treat.

6. The Vittoria

Tilly Mackley writes: "Been wanting to try a roast here for ages after seeing some good feedback on here and a few people I trust big it up on Twitter.

It was great. Huge portions, but not overwhelmingly so. Nicely cooked and tasty beef, and lots of it. Absolutely LOADS of veg, all perfectly cooked. And nice that it was a good selection of seasonal veg too - runner beans, French beans, tender stem broccoli, cavolo nero, carrots, cabbage, mashed swede, red cabbage, cauliflower cheese. Excellent Yorkie and plenty of tasty gravy. The roast spuds weren't very roastie, but I don't care about them anyway. Proper horseradish sauce that gets up your nose and makes your eyes water. Friendly staff, quite a nice little pub. And a ridiculous bargain at £9.95.

We were far too full for pudding, but they all sounded lovely, and again, excellent value at £3.50.

They have other stuff on as well as roasts on a Sunday, and I was very tempted by the bavette steak and chips.

Recommended. And roasts are served until 6pm, which is good to know."

7. The Hillgrove

From Andy Spiers: "The plan yesterday was to make very little effort for maximum reward. So we decided on The Hillgrove because a) it's a 3 minute walk and b) you can book & preorder food served from 4pm onwards so there's no rushing about.

The menu offered a choice of beef, chicken breast, chicken leg, pork, nut roast or a mushroom & stilton thingummy. That's a wide selection for a little pub with a tiny kitchen. We went for beef & nut roast. Lots of great flavour from every item on the plates. I especially enjoyed the carrotty stuff and I usually avoid sweet veg. Big boat of tasty gravy, beef was cooked very nicely and a yummy yorkie (portioned for a normal person instead of a greedy giant, for a change).

If you've been here you'll know they have an astonishing choice of ales which I normally take advantage of. However I was in an apples mood and went for a stonking pint of Janet's Jungle Juice, which certainly put sails on me boat.

At £9 and £8(v), this is a really good value roast. Yes you might be able to do a tiny bit better elsewhere for a little more, but the ability to preorder and eat as late as 9pm makes it a lazy person's winner of a dinner. I mean who wants a roast at midday on a Sunday? Those people have obviously skipped brunch which is frankly uncivilised.

(I've noticed that through the week they feature a diverse variety of guest chefs which change weekly. See Facebook for details. Must get round to trying them out).

The Hilly has been one of my favourite locals since the infamous 90's lock-ins. Like the other Dawkins pubs it's a proper boozer and always welcoming. All things considered I'll score this Sunday roast 87/100."

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