The 16 February 2018 is Chinese New Year’s Day, Year of the Dog. In celebration, we have picked out the ‘pedigree’ of Bristol’s Chinese food offering, as recommended in our weekly #FoodFriday blogs. You’d be prawn crackers to miss out on this tasty lot:

Cathay Rendezvous 

(Recommended by Kelly Jobanputra from Ujima FM)

I’ve eaten a lot of Chinese food over the years and I’ve been to some wonderful restaurants that serve this style of food (including several in China itself). However, I am not exaggerating when I say that Cathay Rendezvous in King Street, Bristol, is up there with the best of them. I love how they have framed pictures of all the famous visitors around the place and the staff can never do enough; it really is a gem in the centre of our gloriously diverse city. Another date night special for me, this place is nicely situated near several pubs.

Cathay Rendezvous

Image - Cathay Rendezvous


(Recommended by Mimi Avery of Averys wine merchants)

Whenever I go to the Mayflower I wonder why I do not go more often, it’s not in the most salubrious area of the city centre - nestled between the bus station and the Bear pit – but the food is some of the best Chinese (Cantonese) I have had in Bristol. I tend to go with a friend who knows a lot about the cuisine and she, along with many Bristol Chefs, love it – the latter not only because they are open until 3am. Most recently I was there with a table of 10…the soft-shell crab, squid (both normal size and baby) and sweet and sour cod were all big hits…and the TsingTao beers washed it all down well. It was incredibly good value.

(Also recommended by Freddy Bird, Executive chef at The Lido)

Following a late night’s service at The Lido, we all go to The Mayflower which stays open until 3am. Despite its less than glamorous location under the bus station, they do truly authentic Chinese food. I’m a creature of habit and my go-to options are chilli squid, crispy fried pig’s intestines, steamed tripe and ginger. The last time I went I was sharing a table with Ken Hom who took me slightly further off piste - and I wasn’t disappointed!

Wong’s Chinese Restaurant

(Recommended by Justin Hawke, owner and head brewer at Moor Beer - a Bristol-based brewery)

I have a great appreciation for good Chinese food – Wong’s on Denmark Street is a favourite. This is Chinese food made in the traditional way without compromise; the menu has a large range of dishes - most you’ve never heard of - but all very tasty. The chilli sea bass is the stuff of legends.

Chilli Daddy

(Recommended by artist Greg Harris)

People in Bristol just LOVE slurping on big bowls of spicy noodles from Chilli Daddy. Luckily Dr Weng now has four outlets in the city, including one in St Nick’s Market. Local artist Greg Harris raves about it: “My all-time favourite place to eat in Bristol is Chilli Daddy. Authentic, mouth-tingling Szechuan food - trust me, I’ve been to Chengdu in Szechuan Province, China, and it’s spot on! I’d recommend the Pork Saozi Noodle Hotpot, spice level 3 (it’s 0-5, and 4 onwards is only for those with a massive pain threshold). If you’re feeling extra greedy, grab yourself a plate of fried dumplings as well.”

Chilli daddy

Image - Chilli Daddy

Woky Ko (micro Asian café-takeaway)

(Recommended by Destination Bristol’s media liaison manager, Lesley Gillilan)

Try a tasty bao from micro Asian café-takeaway Woky Ko. The bao is a traditional Chinese bun: soft, steamed and filled with, say, aubergine and kimchi, or crispy duck with Peking sauce. The sweet caramel ice-cream bao is lush. Last time I was there I ate two. 

On Friday 16 February, Wapping Wharf will be transforming into one big Chinese New Year celebration lead by CARGO1 diner Woky Ko, with lanterns, street food and the traditional lion dance all happening from 5.30pm onwards. Korean Fried Chicken and Freakshakes will be available outside Woky Ko on the evening and various eateries at Wapping Wharf are featuring some specially-created celebratory dishes on their menus throughout the week with an Asian twist to mark Chinese New Year including:

Berthas: Szechuan pepper & orange gelato (until 18 February)

Box-E: cured salmon, pickled ginger, sesame and seaweed (16 & 17 February)

Cargo Cantina: Kung Pao Chicken Tostada w/ Sichuan and Habanero, (until 17 February)

Pickled Brisket: Kimchi Rueben & Kimchi Grilled Cheese, (until 18 February)

Root: crispy oyster and sweet chilli, Monday 12th - (until17 February)

Salt & Malt:Crispy Fried Monkfish Cheeks, Sticky Asian Sauce & Sesame, (until 18 February)

Squeezed: Big Trouble in Little China burger (beef patty, oyster ketchup, ginger buttered Chinese greens, hot you more aioli and a prawn cracker), (16 February)


Image - #WokyFest, credit Woky Ko at Cargo, Wapping Wharf

Water Sky Bristol

(Recommended by Kathryn Davis, Head of Tourism for Destination Bristol)

Part of the Eastgate Oriental City site in Eastville, Water Sky is a huge restaurant with unforgiving lighting but some of the best Chinese food to be found in Bristol. 

The adjacent Chinese supermarket, Wai Yee Hong will be welcoming in the Chinese Year of the Dog on 17 February with traditional live firecrackers, an incredible lion dance and kung fu performances from the Yi Quin lion dance troupe. There will be hot food from a variety of traders, as well as delicious Chinese bakery items, festive Chinese gifts and face painting.

Bristol Museum & Art Gallery

In celebration of the Year of the Dog, the museum’s café will be running a delicious Chinese-inspired menu (17-18 February). Throughout the weekend there will be spectacular traditional and contemporary performances, stalls, workshops and activities, stalls throughout the museum will feature elements of Chinese culture and the shop will be selling beautiful Chinese goods.

Chinese new year

Image - Chinese New Year, Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, credit Adam Saunders


Cathay Rendezvous
Cathay Rendezvous

Beloved in Bristol for over 30 years, family-operated Cathay Rendezvous serves high quality authentic and modern Chinese cuisine, in the first purpose-built library in England.

Chinese New Year at Wai Yee Hong
Chinese New Year at Wai Yee Hong

Wai Yee Hong Chinese Supermarket will welcome the Chinese Year of the Dog with a bang, with traditional live firecrackers and incredible lion dance and kung fu performances from the Yi Quin lion dance troupe.

Live Chinese instrument Guzheng performance at Cathay Rendezvous
Live Chinese instrument Guzheng performance at Cathay Rendezvous

Visit Cathay Rendezvous on 24 August (Thursday). Their first-ever LIVE Guzheng performance will begin at 7pm for two hours.

Bristol Museum & Art Gallery
Bristol Museum & Art Gallery

Museum and art gallery exhibiting some outstanding collections of art, archaeology, Egyptology and natural history in a magnificent building

Woky Ko: CARGO
Credit Paolo Ferla

Woky Ko's original award winning Asian restaurant at Wapping Wharf. Woky Ko: CARGO serves Asian street food for lunch & dinner (plus takeaway) featuring Bao, Xiao sharing plates, noodle and rice dishes.