Pub of the week: The Elephant

7 03 2012

In a pub as expensive as the Elephant, where even a glass of Coke costs £2.10, you would expect the staff to know how to pour a pint. But no, on a quiet Thursday lunchtime, a Peroni on another table was sent back after constituting about one-third froth.

Out of the four ales available on tap, only one was on, the Wife’s Bitter from Wiltshire micro-brewery Plain Ales. Pump clips turned around were Otter, Landlord and Tribute. That is simply not good enough, especially in a pub of the standard the Elephant aspires to be and one which on its website proclaims to have “a quality selection of Cask Marque accredited real ales”.

The Elephant is a Victorian pub on St Nicholas Street behind St Nic’s Market, which was almost lost a couple of years ago in a fire. Whitewashed on the outside, inside it is all exposed wood and walls painted a Mediterranean orange hue. An old mirror advert for Charrington Ales hangs over a marble fireplace.

Upstairs, there is a large function room, named Charles Masters after the architect who designed the pub in 1867, that can be hired for private functions. There is also talk that a new roof terrace will be opening soon.

Not many pubs serve £150 bottles of champagne, but Dom Perignon Brut from 2000 is on the menu at the Elephant, alongside a selection of wines by the glass and bottle, and plenty of spirits with a particular emphasis on rums and whiskies.

On weekdays, a pizza or burger and a Corona is £10, with stone-baked pizzas a speciality here. On Sundays, spend £10.95 on a hearty roast lunch.

But the suspicion remains that this pub is not as good as it should be. An elephant never forgets, but it can change its spots, and its ales.

The Elephant, 20 St Nicholas Street, Bristol. 0117 929 3561.



2 responses

7 03 2012

Interesting. I am tempted to give it a visit. It goes to show that no publicity is bad publicity.

14 03 2012
Lee Calnan

It costs £2.10 for a coke in most city centre bars these days doesn’t it?
I have been to this pub before on several occasions as I work around the corner and it is always excellent. You must have caught them on an off day.

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