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Review: The Lost & Found, Bristol

Bristol has been enjoying lots of new restaurant and bar openings lately. Times are tough on the high street but it’s great to see businesses putting faith in a city that knows how to party!

We got particularly excited by the latest venue as it’s just a few minutes walk from where we live.

The Lost & Found is an interesting concept.

Each of its five branches is focused on a professor with the Bristol branch inspired by Elizabeth E. Lightfoot. Here’s her story:

“Elizabeth E. Lightfoot was a woman who sought to find meaning among the stars. As a Professor of Astronomy with a secret interest in fortune telling, she would conduct her research in a hidden room behind an old tobacconists in the area of Clifton, Bristol. She would also invite her close friends and perform her readings and exhibit her mysterious findings.”

Elizabeth is fictional (or we think she is!) but it’s a great way to build a story behind the brand and give each location an identity.

Strolling passed the long bar area where a lively crowd were sipping cocktails and listening to a guitarist, we reached the restaurant.

It sure is a classy looking joint.

With low light, grand seating and dark wood panelling, it has the feel of a private members’ club. There are also nice touches like planet shaped lamps to reflect professor Lightfoot’s love for astronomy.

The welcome by staff was warm and friendly as we dived into the extensive cocktail menu.

I opted for a Benedict Pike. I’m not really a big whisky drinker but I’m a sucker for a great ingredients list. Check out this one!

Coffee infused Makers Mark
Antica Formula Carpano Vermouth
Xocolatl Mole & Aztec chocolate bitters
Brown sugar
Orange peel
QuiQuiRiQui Matatlan Mezcal Espadin spray
Hickory-smoked

I also enjoy a bit of theatre which this one comes with.

The waitress poured the whisky, hickory smoked on the premises, into my glass at the table and the smell was intense!

Nina opted for the Virginia K. Stevenson cocktail (Sipsmith London Cup Gin, Briottet Crème de Bergamote, Teapot bitters, Fever-Tree Sicilian Lemonade, lemon juice and elderflower syrup) and the little one was able to get in on the action with a Hedgerow Cooler ‘temperance cocktail’, made up of blackberries, Eager apple juice, soda, lemon juice and lavender syrup.

All the cocktails were very well presented with just the right amount of decoration and they tasted great.

They were, unfortunately, let down by the time it took to get them. We’re always prepared for a wait with cocktails but it seemed to take longer than we’re used to.

For my starter, I opted for lightly dusted squid with Asian slaw, sriracha mayonnaise and lime. The squid was of excellent quality but in a very generous portion, there was a bit too much slaw.

As a vegetarian for more than 20 years, Nina is well used to goat’s cheese salad but she said that The Lost & Found version with radicchio, roasted fennel and red grapes was tasty.

There are four vegetarian main course options on the menu (plus a few fish dishes if you’re pescatarian like me).

I went for the chipotle and quinoa chilli with avocado cream and toasted pitta bread.

It was pleasant but Nina enjoyed the sautéed wild mushroom risotto with dolcelatte and toasted hazelnuts more. She thought it was delicious.

As the carnivore in the family, our little one devoured her 8oz sirloin steak and skinny fries with no complaints.

We just about had enough room for dessert!

Nina went for Earl Grey panna cotta with blackberries and mini shortbread biscuits delightfully served in a tea cup.

Savoury loving Nina is tough to please when it comes to pudding but also being a tea fan, she really loved this one!

Our daughter opted for Millionaire’s Shortbread with dark chocolate, sticky whisky caramel (although they removed this bit as she’s 11!), honeycomb and chocolate ice cream. Again, it scored top marks.

My choice of cardamom and ginger rice pudding topped with roasted pineapple and edible flowers looked amazing but unfortunately was undercooked.

Overall, we really enjoyed The Lost & Found.

The service was super friendly but it was slow at times and there is work to do on some of the dishes. I wonder if some of the portions are actually too generous.

The décor is lovely and the atmosphere is brilliant. In an area dominated by student bars, it’s a very welcome addition. We will definitely be back.

We were provided with complimentary food and drink by The Lost & Found but all views are our own.

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