Now this may disappoint a few people or make you question my reliability as a food blogger but I have to confess; I’m not a huge fan of roast dinners.
There are some exceptions of course like Christmas dinner, or my Mum’s Sunday roasts that we grew up with but I can’t say I’ve ever craved them. If we ever went out for a family meal on a Sunday I’d always go off piste and have the burger as opposed to a roast, just because I think a roast can go so easily wrong and leave you feeling disappointed.
This does mean when I discover a good one, that gets it right and manages to be blog-worthy, it’s going to be pretty special.
It doesn’t take long for a good food spot to get a good reputation based on word of mouth in Bristol, and Brace and Browns on Whiteladies has always carried that status. They were booked up week after week when they first introduced their bottomless brunches a few years ago and continue being popular for their Sunday Roasts.
After a visit one weekend with a couple of friends, I noticed they were pretty confident with boards self-proclaiming their roasts as you go inside and after sampling one myself, I can see why.
There are a few starters to choose from which we briefly scanned, knowing full well that we could only manage a roast, perhaps a pudding but that’s a different stomach so we didn’t need to think about that yet. We ordered in some drinks before making our selections.
You have a choice of meats; beef, chicken, leg of lamb, pork belly, a veggie option – a celeriac and squash wellington and something for the vegans – handmade seasonal nut roast. All roasts are served with the same sides of roast potatoes, honey glazed carrots, truffled celeriac and parsnip puree, three cheese cauliflower, seasonal greens and gravy.
Our friends went for the rump of beef, James had the chicken and I went veggie with the wellington.
The portions and sides were very generous, so you could pile your plate pretty high with all the extras.
Not one element of the dish was overpowering but each carried it’s own flavour and added to the variety of the plate. I could have munched on those sweet carrots all afternoon.
I left with a warm belly full of food without that button-popping, I need to lie on the sofa kind of fullness, which was nice as it fuelled us for an afternoon walk along Park Street and even a spot of ice cream.
So turns out I don’t mind a roast, as long as it’s as good as Brace and Browns take on it and I think many other Bristolians agree so make sure to book ahead.