Browns Bar & Brasserie

The first Browns opened at Brighton in 1973 with one simple guiding belief, that classic food, well delivered in a stylish environment would be a recipe for success.

The only thing that has changed since then is the number of Browns, now running at fourteen, of which six are in London, all prospering with the same theme. Some of their buildings are particularly legendary in style, sometimes listed and always interesting. The premises at Bristol formerly served as the City's museum, art gallery and the University Dining Rooms, and are modelled on the Doge's Palace in Venice. The main menu, available throughout the day, starts with appetisers, designed for sharing, with antipasti of Italian meat, vegetarian or seafood.

The first Browns opened at Brighton in 1973 with one simple guiding belief, that classic food, well delivered in a stylish environment would be a recipe for success. The only thing that has changed since then is the number of Browns, now running at fourteen, of which six are in London, all prospering with the same theme.

Some of their buildings are particularly legendary in style, sometimes listed and always interesting. The premises at Bristol formerly served as the City's museum, art gallery and the University Dining Rooms, and are modelled on the Doge's Palace in Venice.

The main menu, available throughout the day, starts with appetisers, designed for sharing, with antipasti of Italian meat, vegetarian or seafood. Try the flatbreads with a range of interesting toppings.

In amongst the thirteen starters expect to come across smoked duck, crisp noodle and cashew nut salad with red peppers, tumeric cauliflower, spring onions and a sherry vinaigrette. The fish and salad choices include fish and chips tempura battered cod with minted mushy peas and tartar sauce and pan-fried butterflied tiger prawns tossed with linguine in a tomato, coriander and chorizo sauce.

The same theme of comfortable food, well-cooked and presented, continues throughout the mains course with roast chicken breast in sour dough bread with baby spinach, tomato and mayonnaise, served with seasoned chips, and steak frites 6oz prime sirloin, served with a lemon, parsley and peppercorn butter.

The chalkboard carries a list of the day's specials, but every day except Sunday is Browns's afternoon tea day, served from 2 to 5.30 pm, and on Sundays it offers a choice of three roasts. It would be harder to find a dessert much more English than lemon tartlet with crème fraîche.

By the way their breakfast and brunch menu is just one of the best, and they do a very nifty prix fixe menu from 4:00 - 6.30 pm.

The wine list is masterful and not over long, sometimes a great relief to those who find it tiresome to navigate their way through even an interesting list such as this. Many bottles are available by the glass and each group of wines is helpfully classified under headings such as white, red and rose with a reserve selection, house recommendations, New and Old World under them.

Browns at Bristol are well able to deal with groups, and have special menus to look after their particular interests. Click on their excellent Website for further details and menu changes.
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