May 13, 2015

An Individually Italian Lunch by Little Green Shed

Hi there, I’m Lou from the travel & lifestyle blog Little Green Shed!

This Bank Holiday we decided to stay local, instead of fighting with the usual motorway traffic, we spent the weekend in our beautiful home city of Bristol.  The perfect Bank Holiday weekend to me is made of up family and friends, slow mornings, leisurely lunches and walks in the woods or a beach. The chance to explore our local neighbourhoods and meet up with good friends is the best way to spend time.  Last weekend was no exception.

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Last Sunday, we pottered at home, reading Openhouse Magazine, drinking good coffee and listening to a pod cast or two.  Then off to one my favourite neighbourhoods in Bristol, Clifton Village for a spot of lunch at Zizzi’s Italian restaurant.  Clifton Village is a beautiful part of Bristol, with many independent shops, cafe’s and eateries. The Mall in particular has fantastic clothing shops, boutiques and an antiques / junk shop which is perfect for browsing and picking up a bargain or two.  Spending in time in Clifton Village is really seeing Bristol at its best.

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Zizzi’s has a fantastic range of Italian food on the menu.  From woodfired pizza to delicious risottos and pastas.  My two sons absolutely LOVE Italian food, in fact, my eldest Charlie would eat pasta or pizza every day of the week if he could, which makes Zizzi’s a fantastic choice of restaurant.

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We sat in the window seat, with a great view of the Mall in the Village.  Watching people come and go, it felt quite cosmopolitan.  The menu has so much choice, from an extensive wine menu to pizzas, pasta and delicious desserts.  Our helpful waiter ran through the menu with us, recommending the specials and how hot certain dishes were.  For starter we chose an anti-pasti platter to share, garlic bread with mozzarella and calamari rings.

I love calamari, and was secretly hoping that these little fried rings of goodness would be just for me – but oh no!  My youngest son, Rufus, has developed quite a taste for seafood (or should I say ‘see food’ – as he sees food and eats it!).  Note to self, opt for a large size portion next time.

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For the main course, we each chose a pizza from the Rustica menu.  Thin crust, wood fired.  I opted for the Skinny Polo which had a topping of chicken, roquito chillies, fior di latte mozzarella, sliced asparagus, baby watercress & fresh oregano.  Smaller in size than the other rustica pizzas, under 500 calories and with a delicious side salad of leaves, slaw and curly beetroot.

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Towards the back of the restaurant sits the open plan kitchen, with an enormous wood fired pizza oven.  The smell and the heat coming from it was incredible – real authentic pizzas.  From our table we sat and watched the chefs roll and toss the pizza dough, flourish them with topping and sauce and expertly place them in to the oven.

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For desert, we managed to squeeze in some gelato – sharing three scoops between us, I could have eaten the lot myself! YUM!.  Very full and completely happy we headed to Leigh Woods to see the bluebells and to walk off our meal.

Leigh Woods is just a short drive from Clifton Village, over the famous Clifton Suspension Bridge in to Leigh Woods.  A beautiful woodland owned by the National Trust, it has acres of walking routes, a mountain biking trail and more recently an art installation by local artist Luke Jerram, called ‘Withdrawn’.

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A series of fishing boats set among the trees. A thought-provoking installation which raises awareness about climate change.  The whole scene was incredibly ghostly and surreal to see.

Bristol is currently this years European Green Capital, and this art installation is just one of the many exhibits, workshops and events going on this year as part of this.

Walking through the bluebells was a perfect end to a stay at home Bank Holiday weekend.  How did you spend your Bank Holiday weekend?  I do hope you got to spend time with friends and family and eat great food.   Next May Bank Holiday we are heading to Devon for the weekend, for more family fun, and perhaps more pizza!

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