The Bay Horse, Lewins Mead, Bristol, Review

The Bay Horse has been an inn since the late 19th century when the views from its windows would have been very different along with the customers, hardy sailors perhaps from the nearby Bristol Docks looking for a pint of grog and some lively company. It’s gone through many incarnations since then and this last one is the best. Forget the connotations of city centre pubs as rough and ready, the Bay Horse is now sophisticated and on trend, the recent refurbishment seamlessly creating space for diners and drinkers by a split-level arrangement. There are two entrances, one via the long bar and new gin servery, and the other through the outside seating area with umbrellas and wooden tables.

They serve an excellent pint as well as a good choice of cocktails and wine; calling in after work we found a soothing Peroni served in a tall branded glass chilled to perfection a great antidote to the woes of the day. The atmosphere is relaxed and sociable with comfortable light wood furniture and easy-on-the-ear background music. The staff couldn’t be more friendly or welcoming and service is speedy and efficient.

Early evening customers were a mix of after-work drinkers (like us) enjoying themselves and quite a few diners; there was a rather glamorous table of ladies obviously celebrating something with glasses of fizz and supper. We were very tempted to stay longer but remembered it was only Thursday and we should be sensible, although we could have tried a 0% spritz cocktail instead of the lager!

Jacquie Vowles


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