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“What a find! Cool place.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Old Bookshop

The Old Bookshop
65 North Street | Bedminster, Bristol BS3 1ES, England
+44 117 953 5222
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Ranked #42 of 1,456 Restaurants in Bristol
Cuisines: British
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Description: The Old Bookshop is a small, eclectic cafe/bar that serves good food at a fair price. The atmosphere is friendly and relaxed. The walls are covered in old photographs, typewriters and curiosities. The menu is written on a blackboard, and you order at the bar. Your meal will be served on vintage mismatched china. Don't expect a stuffy restaurant, we are just a quirky little bar that does great food! We recently added a cocktail bar with the most delicious cocktails imaginable.
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“What a find! Cool place.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012 via mobile

I found this place after a a friend recommended their breakfast. I had eggs Benedict, served with fries, which after a hard weeks work in the forest was more than welcome.

The coffee at this place really hits the spot, one of there best lattes for a while.

The girl on service was extremely kind to us and treated us like family; makes such a difference to be treated nicely in a new place.

We were invited back for music that night which didn't disappoint. Again the staff were more than accommodating, and did so well to make us feel welcome despite being run off their feet.

South of the river seems to be changing, and for the better :) We need more honest and open places like this in Bristol.

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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173 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    129
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bristol, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Original food in a quirky venue”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2012 via mobile

Haggis bhajis?! Artichoke fritters?! Risotto wrapped in palm tree leaves?!

To be honest i've been avoiding reviewing this place, having been 4 times now, as it's been well and truly 'found out' as a new and exciting place to eat in Bristol. It gets busier everytime we go!

I love the original food on offer, a sort of British version of tapas, and the prices at £4 a dish or 3 for a tenner during happy hour represents very good value. Warning: 3 dishes per person is probably too much food for the average person...

This is because the chef Scot (the Scot) is generous with his portions!

Overall, a fantastic, friendly place to dine and have a drink. I hope it sticks around for a long time to come...

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Ring before you go.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

We went here for lunch yesterday. It took about twenty minutes to find somewhere to park. Finally going into the restaurant we were encouraged by the delicious items on the menu board. The lady behind the bar asked us what we would like and when we said we would like to eat, she said that she was sorry but there was no lunch today. We would advise anyone who would like to eat here to ring first. We had travelled twenty miles to get there.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MammaBookshop, Owner at The Old Bookshop, responded to this review, November 13, 2012
I’m sorry that you travelled such a distance to visit us, and I can understand how disappointed you must have been that you were not able to eat here.

Although Trip Advisor has chosen to include us in their ‘restaurant’ category, The Old Bookshop is not a restaurant. We are simply a café/bar that has gained an excellent reputation for our tasty dishes. We have no control over how we are listed on Trip Advisor, and we have not asked to be included on their site. Perhaps you were under the wrong impression of the nature of our business.

If you check on our website, you will see that we only offer a small selection of dishes from 12 until 3pm. The full menu listed on the board is not available until 6pm. Some days we change things around, for example today we are offering Pieminister pies for lunch.

If I remember correctly, you arrived at around 2.30pm. Our kitchen had just closed as our chef had to deal with an urgent situation. We are a small, independent business, not part of a chain, and we do not have an army of chefs available to step-in at short notice.

It must have been frustrating for you to spend so long looking for somewhere to park. However, we don’t offer parking facilities and I’m not sure why you feel the need to mention it as though it were, somehow, our fault.

We would be delighted to welcome you back any time, but if you would like to try out the full menu it would be best to come during the evening.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Is the fairy tale ending?”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012 via mobile

I absolutely love this place.....usually.

I visited last night with a girlfriend and as expected we had to wait for a table. Absolutely fine as the place was packed! A few other parties walked in behind us and were also told to wait. A nice table for two became free, we got excited, only for one of the waiters to direct the girls who walked in after us to the table!

Thinking it was an oversight on their part, I asked the 'barmaid' only to be told that the party had 'reserved' a table. Any regulars will know you can't reserve tables here so then apparently the girls were 'friends of the owner'!

Ok so I'm not friends with the owner but I am a paying guest, somewhat of a regular and someone who has praised this place a million times so I thought it was just bloody rude! Any good friends of mine would expect to be treated like other customers and not make the rest of us feel unwelcome.

The food was nice but shop bought grated mozzarella on the chips was grim, some of the dishes were warm at best, and I just don't think they were up to the standards previously achieved. Not to mention the waitress gave us the wrong food initially.

All in all the evening was quite a let down. The staff weren't attentive and in most cases rude, the chef was clearly having an off night and I just hope that the great reviews on here haven't gone to the owners' head thereby letting slip the quality of both food and service.

I'd like the old Old Bookshop back please, along with the nice waitress you had originally. Thanks.

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
“Really good proper food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2012 via mobile

A couple of weeks ago I was stopping in Bristol and went on trip adviser for a restaurant. I was not disappointed with this one. I went for 3 tapas style dishes and a beer and it was excellent. It is small and has a really chilled out atmosphere. The food I had was really gorgeous and £12 for 3 tapas dishes. 3 was plenty and the chef brought some home cooked bread out for me to mop up the tomato and chilli sauce from the gorgeous prawns. All in all not fancy, gorgeous food at a brilliant price and very homely.

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MammaBookshop, Owner at The Old Bookshop, responded to this review, November 10, 2012
I'm glad you enjoyed your recent visit to The Old Bookshop, and thank you for taking the time to leave such a great review. If you are ever in Bristol again, you can be sure of a very warm welcome!
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