By Alice Cottam, fourth year Dental student
Walking through Clifton on a rainy afternoon, it is hard to believe that behind the door of the Clifton Lido you can find a charming Mediterranean-esque hideaway. Once inside, you instantly are reminded of the history of the building, the Victorian swimming pool is still there, however, heaters allow swimmers to use the facilities throughout the year.
Downstairs is a bar area that serves tapas, where you can sit and watch the world go by at the pool level, whereas upstairs you have a birds-eye perspective of the pool and spa. Wherever you are sat, you get a glimpse of the quaintly hypnotic sight of the swimmers.
The restaurant is light and airy, with a warm, buzzing atmosphere. The decor fits in with the cuisine - heavily influenced by northern Spain. There is a choice of menus, the à la carte menu or the option of the set menu. The set menu caters more to a student budget (although visiting the lido is still a splurge for most students), offering a course for £12, increasing by £4 for each course added. Meanwhile you can expect to be paying just shy of £20 for items from the à la carte menu.
The food, like the restaurant, is unique. Reading through the menu, you are greeted with a number of ingredients you have most likely never heard of – from grelos to var salmon, from arrocina beans to txakoli, phone data for Google is a necessity. You can expect to find unusual combinations that you would never expect to work, but they do. The portions are not huge, but they are rich, and a culinary delight.
Image: Epigram food contributor/Alice Cottam
This place, due to its quirky nature, is often booked up, so if you fancy giving it a try, it is always best to book. Visiting the Lido is by no means cheap, but it is certainly an experience to be ticked off by every Bristol foodie.
Featured image: Epigram food contributor/Alice Cottam
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