Advantages Decent food in a lovely building
Disadvantages Not disabled friendly
Having visited Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery on more than one occasion, I'd always looked at Browns Bar and Brasserie next door to it and wondered if it would be a good place to have lunch. It is a fascinating piece of architecture that looks almost as though it could have been a church, but apparently it was once part of the museum. It was restored in 1992 and Browns opened their establishment there. There is a number of stone steps to be negotiated up to the entrance; not suitable for the disabled, unfortunately, but very popular with young people as a place to sit and sip a drink in sunny weather.
The menu begins with Aperitifs and Appetisers. As well as cocktails, there are sharing platters, flatbreads, olives, focaccia and camembert. Then come Starters, which include soup of the day (£4.95), smoked duck parfait (£6.95), goat's cheese filo parcel (£5.95) and pan seared scallops (£8.95). Main dishes are divided into two sections: Fish, Pasta, Salad and Vegetarian, and then Browns Classics and Grill. In the first section you can choose from four cheese macaroni (£9.95), grilled fillets of sea bass (£14.95), lobster tagliatelle (£13.95) and also fresh fish of the day or a vegetarian special. In the second section you will find shepherd's pie or burger (£9.95), grilled breast of chicken (£11.95) and medallions of Scottish venison (£19.95) among others, and again there is a special of the day. There are side orders of salads, various kinds of potatoes, vegetables and breads with prices ranging from £2.75 to £4.95. The children's menu is £4.95 for two courses or £6.95 for three.I decided to have salmon and smoked haddock fishcakes, served with a baby leaf, chicory, cucumber and cherry tomato salad with noisette sauce (£10.95). My son chose the wild boar and chorizo burger served on a brioche bun with lime and chilli mayonnaise and seasoned chips (£12.95). We didn't have a long wait. My fishcakes came on a square plate; the baby leaf was watercress, and the sauce was served in a separate pot. The cucumber was attractively sliced in a thin ribbon, but it is one thing I can't abide so was immediately cast aside. The addition of the chicory was certainly unusual; there was one green leaf and one red one. One of the fishcakes had been browned more than the other, but that didn't really matter.
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