Restaurant review: Gas & Co, Bristol

Saturday, 7 June 2014
This review is a bit special... well.. from the point of view of KneadWhine anyway.

Today marks a year since I returned to KneadWhine, after a few posts earlier when I was weaning D and sharing my bread making.  So, how do I mark this?  I thought that I'd get a few guest writers in to share their favourite veggie meals in restaurants local to them.  So, I thought I'd spend my birthday month handing you over to other writers, basically.

So here's mine.  Not local to me, not my favourite but of interest nonetheless.

We had taken a nosey into this new establishment when wandering past once before and after a busy day at the Vegfest, amazingly, we were ready for food - blame it on the fresh air or the wandering but I was particularly hankering after an old favourite of mine - macaroni cheese.

When we lived in Bristol - nearly ten years ago now - we had a meal at the previous restaurant housed there, the Henry Africas.  We were left feeling distinctly underwhelmed.  One or both of us were sick the next day and the meal was just all out disappointing.  The atmosphere was just about there but the food wasn't worth returning for.

The place has certainly had a spruce up.  It looks like a mixture of a speakeasy - with walls that look just a little TOO patched up on the exposed brickwork - and the traditional American diner - lots of red and little signs.

It's a big space to try and fill and it just about manages it - although there is a bit of a cavernous space between some of the outer tables and the bar.  Perhaps this will make more sense with the evening entertainment I've seen mentioned.  

Gas & Co have had a bit of a slating - if I'd read the reviews before we went, we might well have avoided it.  After all, there are so many different places to eat in Bristol and even a large collection of them on the Whiteladies road, that we would have ended up somewhere that could have satisfied us.

However, without the knowledge of the reviews, we gave Gas and Co a try.  

We found the service pretty good.  We were met pretty quickly at the door and given a choice of seats.  The menu arrived swiftly and our orders were also quickly procured.  It was a little quiet given that it was a Sunday evening on a bank holiday but perhaps the negative word is out there.  

Mr K went with a Brooklyn beer which he was pleased with and I got a soda water and cranberry juice.  I was a little miffed when the bill arrived to realise that I'd been charged the cost of a cranberry juice but not enough to query it.  

In terms of food, I went straight for the macaroni cheese.  I was a little disappointed that it was a 'starter' size but I went with it anyway, with corn on the cob on the side.  

Mr K had a big dirty burger.  While I don't talk about meat on here, I should mention that it was one of the messiest eats possible - which seems to be en vogue at the moment.  

My 'starter' arrived: - 

This picture does not do justice to the size of this meal.  I can't imagine what I would have done if I had ordered a main as well.  For five pounds, this was an incredibly good deal.  

I can't tell you what the cheese sauce had in it but it was delicious.  The sauce could have been a touch thicker if I was being picky but the flavour was so good that it didn't matter.  I'm also not sure if the menu is quite right.  I couldn't detect the parmesan crust that was mentioned on it.  It wasn't a problem though as I happily polished it off...

and these corn on the cob.  They were really well cooked - not al dente but well marinaded in chilli and garlic butter.  Again - a slightly messy eat but well worth the buttery fingers and chin.  

All in all, my meal and drink came to £9.30 which seemed like pretty good value overall.  As a vegetarian, I'd have liked to see them offering their veggie chilli on nachos - but they may well have done this if I'd asked.  As a pregnant lady, mocktails are always appreciated - something a bit special that doesn't carry the alcoholic content.  It seemed that they had a really good cocktail menu though, so we may well be back to sample when I'm able again.  Service was far better than some of the other reviews I've read suggest - although on occasion it did feel a tad awkward.  I'll put that down to inexperience rather than anything else though - they only opened at the end of February.  

I think it's also a place that might appeal to D - he (and maybe I) love milkshakes and he loves ketchup with chips and burger - in that order.  

Gas and Co can be found on the Whiteladies Road in Bristol.  They don't currently have a website but do have a Facebook page.  Despite the reviews, I'd give it a try.  You might be quite surprised.  

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