As the cold, dark nights draw in and the rain gets more frequent, I figured it was time to round up some of the best places to get comfy until the sun reappears!
Here are the best places to snuggle up with a mulled beverage whenever it gets nippy…
The Lion, Cliftonwood
This one always gets a mention whenever I ask people for their favourite pubs in Bristol. Tucked away on a side street in colourful Cliftonwood (worth an autumnal stroll in its own right) – this is the epitome of local, traditional pub loveliness, complete with a roaring fire on colder days. Top roasts too.
The Star & Dove, Totterdown (closed at the moment)
A pleasant mix of sophisticated pub food, real ales and ridiculously comfy sofas, I award bonus points for their range of hot drinks in winter (the butter beer has to be my favourite) and what I still reckon are the best sausage rolls this side of the river.
Inn on the Green, Horfield
Another historical gem, this sprawling pub has a mighty selection of ales and a top notch menu of pub food favourites. Choose to sit at a table by the bar, or in one of their snug booths nearer the fireplace. Lush garden too, for when it warms up again!
Barley Mow, The Dings
Another great hidden pub, just a hop, skip and jump from Temple Meads and the Bristol to Bath Cycle Path (and the Moor Beer Brewery Tap – less cosy but worth a visit for the lush beers). There’s always something going on in this small local – from tap takeovers, to quizzes, to the Bristol Beer Factory 12 Stouts of Christmas every December. Yum.
Volunteer Tavern, Old Market
Or Volly #1 if you prefer (probably not). Find it behind the Future Inn near Cabot Circus, serving up a dazzling selection of drinks & dishes for such a dinky pub. The cute back yard has heaters, they have special offers throughout the week, and it’s dog friendly. Winner.
Yurt Lush, Temple Meads
You can’t get much cosier than sitting around a wood burner, drinking mulled cider and eating a darn good roast in a yurt, can you? The Eat Drink Bristol Fashion team have done well here – the menu is simple & high quality but not too pricey, the staff are lovely and the atmosphere is alwats sufficiently chilled.
The Bell, Stokes Croft
Slightly more raucous than the other pubs on this list (not surprising given the location), this friendly pub is tucked into a side street off Jamaica St but still manages a decent crowd throughout the week due to the decent prices, tasty menu and regular music nights.
The Rose of Denmark, Hotwells
Not just the location for one of the best roasts in town, but also an all-round gem of a local. Curry night, burger night, jazz night….plus a selection of good quality ales, and comfy seats to boot.
The Hillgrove, Kingsdown
Another place that gets a mention not just for its fine selection of ales, but also a tasty roast (which they don’t start seving until 4pm, for those of you needing some recovery time on a Sunday). They also play host to food pop-ups during the week (check their Twitter for latest updates) and have events on throughout the week. A proper old-style, traditional boozer, laaavly.
The Famous Royal Navy Volunteer, King St
A lush pub set across 3 floors (although you probably won’t want to make use of the roof terrace in bleak midwinter), Volly #2 (according to me) is a bit of a mission trying to decide from their extensive list of beers, wines and ciders, but there’s plenty of room to find a cosy corner and enjoy their impressive menu of sophisticated pub favourites such as burgers, sandwiches and fish & chips.
The Green Man, Kingsdown
Another teeny gem of a pub, this time up on the hill just behind the BRI. The roasts are legendary (as are the burgers to be honest), the gin selection is epic, and the staff are super friendly. Plus they have a good selection of games, which always goes down well in my book.
If you’re looking for other ways to get through the chillier days, here are some other guides you might like:
- Bristol’s Best Roast Dinners
- Bristol Pub Crawls
- Bristol’s Best Burgers
- The Top 12 Brunches in Bristol