A converted river police station turned restaurant. The building's architecture is impressive as are the olives and bread. Upstairs the atmosphere can be a little formal. The downstairs cafe bar is a lot more relaxed and spills out onto a waterfront balcony.
The Grove BS1 4RB;
tel: 0117 914 4434;
La Flamenca is fantastic. As you walk down the winding steps into the vaults it's like walking into Spain. The tapas is great (spinach and chickpeas is amazing). I've been told the paella is fab too, and it certainly looks it. At the tapas bar you sit on stools with high barrels for tables. A must if you adore Spanish food, and very reasonable: two people, several dishes and a number of beers cost £24!
12a North Parade (vaults), Bath;
tel: 01225 463 626
The restaurant scene is very good indeed, choose from traditional Turkish dishes to a wide range of international cuisine. Many restaurants have roof-topped terraces to admire the great views. Prices start to climb the closer to the harbour but it is possible to find very reasonably priced menus. For a truly memorable meal try Obo Terrace.
Formerly a down-at-heel, no graces boozer, this old coach house has had money thrown at it to such an extent that it is now an expensive, Michelin star wielding restaurant. Posh like.
Boyces Avenue, Clifton Village BS8 4AA;
tel: 0117 973 3522
Go to this large food hawker centre with lots of different cuisines.
I recommend going in the evening because the street at the back is closed to traffic and stalls open up selling satay sticks and honey chicken wings.
It's a perfect evening in Singapore when you have a pitcher of Tiger and you're munching on satay sticks.
Boon Tat Street. Take the MRT to Raffles Place Station (EW14/NS26) and walk towards Robinson Road;
Juice bar that seems to be predominantly staffed by the oh so chirpy members of local ska band Babyhead. Açai smoothies as well as black bean & cheese burritos are the order of the day.
39 Cotham Hill, BS6 6JY;
tel: 0117 973 4800
Commendable co-op that does good coffee as well as vegetarian and vegan food. All ingredients are organic or sourced locally making this an ethical, guilt-free place to eat. Sadly, there's not a single 'Now' compilation in their jukebox.
3 Ninetree Hill, BS1 3SB (just off Stokes Croft);
tel: 0117 924 9200;
Great family-run tapas restaurant with consistently good, well-priced food. Service can be a little slow but don't let that put you off. Recommended.
3 Wightman Road, London, N4 1RQ; tel: 020 8340 5400;
Closest railway station: Harringay;
Friendly south Bristol tapas bar. During the evenings it doubles up as a language academy catering for all levels. Their deli, situated in St Nicholas market, sells a good range of Rioja, Albarino, Navarra, Penedes, Jerez, and ports.
298 North Street, Southville BS3;
tel: 0117 902 1325;
A fabulous Spanish/tapas restaurant with a great ambience suitable for intimate, romantic one-on-ones through to large parties. Fantastic value for money
16 Royal Parade, Blackheath Village, London SE3 0TL (overlooking the heath);
tel: 020 8297 1880;
Nearest train station: Blackheath, or Lewisham/Greenwich DLR
The most authentic tapas I have had in the UK. The atmosphere is that of eating at someone's house, intimate, welcoming, hosts bending over backwards to make you happy, and the home-grown house wine and sherry is something else. You can buy bottles of wine to take home, along with many of the ingredients that you'll find on the menu.
111 Church Street, North Laine, Brighton BN1, opposite Brighton Dome/Corn Exchange;
tel: 01273 674116
The alternative (and best) part of town as far as I can see. Londoners will recognise it as a genuine, more truly independent Camden. Authentic food from many countries, an anarchist bookstore, numerous cafes and clothing stores.
Backs onto Chinatown off Spadina Ave.
Very authentic food with a wide range of dishes. The best tapas I've personally had in Spain or outside. It's quite expensive but perfect for a special occasion. The service is kind of moody, which I find quite entertaining. Nice atmosphere and interior too.
32 Putney High Street, SW15 1SQ;
tel: 020 8780 1022;
Nearest station: Putney Bridge tube/Putney railway station;
Wonderful, buzzy tapas restaurant in seven dials with a serene, sheltered garden for eating outside. Staff are all delightful and the food is a contender for the best Spanish in Brighton - dare I say it just as good as Pintxo People (much lauded newcomer on Western Road) but more hearty fare and not as self-consciously flash.
87-93 Dyke Road, just off Seven Dials roundabout (near Brighton station); tel: 01273 220 220
Reasonable tapas, (I haven't tried the longer menu) in nice surroundings with good service. Some of the dishes are spot on, (the pork and chicken tapas) others are a little off the mark (the lentil dish didn't really work). The best dishes were the simple, unmessed about tapas - just as it should be. Good wine list and pleasant atmosphere. A really good addition to this part of West Yorkshire.
1 Oldham Rd,
Tel: 01422 823070
A few miles from Huddersfield.
This restuarant offers wonderful Spanish/North African cooking. The tapas menu is delicious, with simple, flavoursome dishes that allow each ingredient to speak for itself.
34-36 Exmouth Market, EC1R 4QE
tel: 020 7833 8336;
Stock is undoubtedly the best Italian restaurant in central Manchester. Housed in the Victorian stock exchange, the room is spendid and one could easily think that something pretentious was about to be served up, but what comes out of the kitchen is worthy of nonna. They offer you the lightest pizzetta topped with pomodoro and torn basil. Every day they prepare home-made ravioli (walnuts and gorgonzola or spinach and ricotta are both fantastic), and there are great standards such as fegato alla Venetiana with polenta and vitello alla Milanese with spaghetti. Most days you can have a great set lunch for the odd amount of £13.30.
4 Norfolk St, just behind Market St;
tel: 0161 839 6644;
This restaurant served the best authentic Italian meal we've ever had. Get there early as a queue builds up rapidly for the fresh, very generous portions of seafood, great pasta/pizzas and the biggest fruit salad you have ever seen - all served on huge hand-painted plates. Throw in live music in different parts of this buzzing square (everything from choirs to Afro-Cuban music), entertaining service and low prices, and you have the ingredients for a memorable evening out. Highly recommended.
Piazza Santa Spirito, south of the Ponte Vecchio;
tel: 055 210 437
A trio of brightly coloured rooftop cubes make it easy to find. The rejuvenation of this formerly dilapidated Victorian paint and varnish factory is a fine example of urban renewal. It's now an ever evolving hub of studios with an art gallery on-site. There's also the Brasilian Bocabar providing good food and drink to reward you for a trip off the beaten track.
Bath Road, Arnos Vale, BS4 3EH;
tel: 0117 972 8838;
Take bus numbers 1, X39, 178 & 349 from the city centre or from Bristol Temple Meads train station;
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