The Jetty, Harbour Hotel and Spa, Bristol
The city of Bristol is buzzing with activity and continues to grow and attract new residents and visitors from all over the world forming part of it’s vibrant and diverse culture with a population of now just under 450,000 people.
In 2014 it was named as the best city to live in in the UK by the Sunday Times and it’s easy to see why!
With the Harbourside having undergone a complete transformation over the last 15 years or so, this area is almost unrecognisable in part from it’s industrial past, with many luxury apartments in excess of £1M amongst a huge selection of restaurants, cafes, art galleries and museums, yet somehow it all manages to merge well together; industrial, Victorian, and contemporary all embracing the history of this fantastic city. The incredible recreation of John Cabot’s ‘The Matthew’ ship can regularly be seen sailing along the floating harbour past Brunel’s famous SS Great Britain which is permanently docked there. This review isn’t about Brunel or the SS Great Britain but the visitor centre is well worth a look as is their lovely cafe!
With Clifton houses often selling for £2.5M or more, the diversity along Gloucester Road and St. Nick’s market to name just two great places, a thriving music and art scene, and record numbers of businesses being started in the South West with Bristol at it’s core, it has become a hotbed for entrepreneurial activity so there’s something for everyone in Bristol, even the beautiful countryside which it is surrounded by if city life isn’t for you!
With two excellent Universities, Bristol Uni and UWE Bristol, more and more students including thousands from Europe and the Far East are welcomed to Bristol every year.
Unsurprisingly the city itself has a host of excellent restaurants and hotels with the recent opening of The Ivy in Clifton Village, which will be the subject of a forthcoming review, along with today’s restaurant of choice being the newly opened The Jetty at the Harbour Hotel and Spa on Corn Street, in the heart of old city, close to the ‘Nails’.
The Nails are in fact four bronze tables from the 16th and 17th century situated outside The Exchange, which now houses St Nick’s Market, and were created in order for the merchants and entrepreneurs of the day to conduct business and sell their goods before the Exchange building itself was built in 1741-43. It is now the only surviving 18th century Exchange building in England and is Grade One Listed.
The term “cash on the nail” is widely thought of as having come from the historic trading over the Nails in Bristol.
At the time of writing, The Jetty restaurants also exist in Dorset, Salcombe, Brighton and Guildford and in November 2016 they will open Chichester too. Despite having stayed in Harbour hotels this is the first time we have eaten in any of The Jetty restaurants, so today we visited the latest addition to the brand which is in two very impressive former banking halls.
A friend and property developer Oliver Hawthorne and I decided to meet for breakfast on this occasion and were quickly shown to our table.
The design and standard of finish is excellent and gives a light and airy feel, however to see it in its true light we think it is worth revisiting to see this aspect in the evening as there were very few customers for an early breakfast and it was slightly stark feeling in my opinion but given the grand feeling of the building and high ceilings this is understandable given the time of day.
The eggs on muffin were excellent, but being absolutely honest this isn’t the most complicated dish to get right! Nonetheless it was well presented with the egg soft, sunny side up how I like them.
My friends Full English looked good and was clearly prepared using quality ingredients, but was largely what you would expect in a restaurant of this standard. In my opinion it is overpriced though at £16.95 given the competition from The Ivy (£13.50) and other top Bristol restaurants. Personally I like an English breakfast to be a ‘proper’ English breakfast as to me dressing up a dish like this with herbs just isn’t right but nonetheless it looked good.
The attention to detail in terms of design, layout and service was excellent and we feel the hotel and restaurant are a really welcome addition to the city. It’s worth noting that one part of the hotel, the former banking hall of Lloyds Bank Headquarters, now serves as an event space for up to 300 guests and is worth considering for weddings and corporate events.
All in all a very good experience with excellent, easy to use wifi and we will revisit one lunch time or evening to see the restaurant in its true light but based on today’s visit, with excellent attentive staff we give The Jetty, Bristol four forks and will certainly revisit.
What we ate and drank:
1 Full English Breakfast
1 Fried Eggs on Toasted Muffin
1 English Breakfast Tea
1 Americano with cold milk
Total including service: £33.22
Harbour Hotel & Spa
55 Corn Street
Restaurant Reservations: 0117 203 4456
Fear On Food Rating; 4 Forks