Where’s the best bottomless brunch in Bristol? There’s a fair few of them out there now: venues looking to draw in the weekend morning/early afternoon crowds by offering a meal alongside an endless supply of booze (normally Prosecco), in a set period of time.
And one of the latest places in Bristol to embrace the trend is The Square Kitchen, on Berkeley Square. It’s somewhere we’ve eaten a fair few times – generally in the evenings – and we’ve enjoyed it. So how would their brunch offering fare…?
We went on just their third week of bottomless brunching – our waiter explaining that while their Sunday lunches are popular, they’ve decided to try something different during the warmer months to entice people in. It was fairly quiet at 11.30 in the morning when we went, but running from then till 3.30pm (each booking allowing a two-hour dining/drinking period), there’s plenty of time for those who, unlike us, aren’t subject to early Sunday starts enforced by a 16-month old.
Head in through the Berkeley Square Hotel and you’ll find yourself in a sumptuously decorated lounge area, complete with pink velvet chairs and gentle music. And up a few more steps is the restaurant itself: again, elegantly decorated with a refined feel.
And the menu? Well, there’s the choice of a full English (or a veggie version), various egg dishes, toasted brioche options, croques and open sandwiches – which you can either order as the dish on its own, or as part of your bottomless brunch (with unlimited Prosecco) for £25.
While we made our choices, strains of lounge jazz versions of songs by bands like Toploader and U2 were the backing track – a suitable accompaniment to a lazy Sunday. As was the Prosecco, which was brought over and poured pretty speedily once we’d ordered – a soft and fruity number that was light and refreshing.
Me? I went for the vegetarian breakfast (£8 if ordered on its own), which promised a vegetarian sausage, hash brown, beans, mushroom, tomato and free range eggs (which I requested poached). And it was a very pretty, dainty plate of food.
That veggie sausage was the star – not apologetically trying to be meat, but packed full of finely chopped veggies, cheese and mustard, with a crumbed coating. And everything else was perfectly cooked.
There were a few issues, though. The two tablespoons or so of baked beans that I was given were pretty sweet and lukewarm at best, while the eggs – although the whites were firm and set and the yolk was golden and runny – tasted a little vinegary, as if too much had been added to the water while cooking.
In all honesty, I felt that I could have done with some toast to mop up the egg yolk and the tomato sauce from the beans – it’s probably the least generous full breakfast I’ve had in Bristol for a while.
And Chris felt the same. His full English (£9.50 on its own, £25 with bottomless Prosecco) was slightly more generous, the eggs nicely fried, the sausage firm and herby. But again, he just felt it was lacking something…
The serving staff at The Square Kitchen were great with our 16-month old, though – bringing over a highchair (and helping us to work out its complex harness system), and coming over with an extra side plate after our food had been served, in case we wanted to use it for him.
The Square Kitchen is a lovely setting – and the evening meals we’ve had there have always been great. But if we’d paid the £25 a head instead of being asked in, I don’t think we’d have felt like we’d got great value for money. Then again, we’re more about the food – neither of us is a big drinker. If it were the other way round, it could well have been a different matter…
Please note: our meal at The Square Kitchen was received free of charge, but this in no way impacted on our opinion. We were not obliged to write a positive review, and the venue did not see this review before it was put up on the site.