One Delicious Hodge Podge, The Gallimaufry -Gloucester Road, Bristol

Until recently, I'd never eaten dinner at The Gallimaufry. Breakfast, brunch and Sunday lunch -yes, but never an evening meal. As with many a thing in life, the best adventures can often be unplanned; I tell you, a hand drawn map and vague sense of direction can take you to some interesting places. A few weeks back, M and I, with no food in the fridge and little inclination to cook, wandered down the Gloucester Road trying to agree on where to go eat. On the off chance, we popped into The Gallimaufry to see if they might have a table and if they were still serving food. And boy am I glad that we did.

Late in the evening and a little flat and fed up, we skipped straight to main course. If proof was ever needed to show how a good meal can lift the spirits, this was definitely it. A crisp and tender square of pork belly, soft, criss-crossed curls of cuttle fish, spring vegetables and broth arrived. Deeply savoury, the broth was just delicious but didn't overpower the sweet carrots or bitter, earthy turnips served with it. I slurped down every last drop. M ate beef sirloin, ox cheek, shallot, leek and blue cheese; equally good, I got to taste a mouthful.

For dessert, I ate chocolate fondant with a scoop of cherry ripple ice cream. With the merest prod of a spoon, liquid chocolate oozed everywhere, melting the cherry ripple. Heavenly. M ate a generous slice of pistachio olive oil cake with a scoop of summery, strawberry sorbet. Not only one of the best meals we've eaten in Bristol, but for this calibre of food, such good value for money too.

Breakfast or brunch here is also a real treat and the ham hock, poached eggs with hollandaise sauce on toast is something I'd really recommend. Smoky, sweet, salinity from the tender ham hock cuts through all the eggy richness and, washed down with a cup of Extract coffee, definitely sets you up for the day.
Devilled kidneys on toast are also a winner -not the hard, squeaky, ammoniac nuggets beloved of cheap pies and school dinners. Good amounts of wholegrain mustard and Worcestershire sauce are used in the Devilling; for my taste, I'd love a bit more of a kick from some cayenne pepper but they're still utterly delicious and, it's always a delight to find somewhere that cooks offal this well.

Those of you searching for the best burger in Bristol should definitely check out the Galli's offering; I think it has to be up there. Beef from Ruby and White, well seasoned and flavoured with onion and herbs, a little pink in the middle, make for a superior patty. Served with a toasted sesame seed bun and thickly cut chips, it's one tasty burger.
So for some excellent eating, relaxed, friendly vibes, in quirky up-cycled, recycled surrounds -get thee to The Gallimaufry. I'm sure we'll be heading back for dinner sometime soon.

Update -March 2014
Since posting this, The Gallimaufry have had a change of chef.

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