I don't think that you can call yourself a true Bristolian until you've sampled at least one of Pieminister's award-winning pies. Also, I doubt that I need to provide much background information to this review seeing that this company has become as symbolic of Bristol as the Clifton Suspension Bridge and Justin Lee-Collins! With that in mind, I'm going to keep this brief...
Date and Time: Saturday 16th April 2011, 17:30
Name of Establishment: Pieminister (PM)*
Location: 24 Stokes Croft, Bristol
Reason for Visit: Hunger struck!
Whether you are elbow-to-elbow with other diners on the benched seating at PM's under-cover stall at St. Nicholas' market or within the hub of the PM kingdom at it's Stokes Croft Café, you are always guaranteed a tasty meal in a relaxed environment. This occasion was no exception and as The Boy and I were given our tinny plates of piping hot nosh (channelling that laid-back festival vibe), we experienced that familiar comfort of knowing that what we were about to eat would set us up for the rest of the evening.
Sat on a generous helping of creamy mash and surrounded by a moat of rich-tasting 'groovy' aka gravy, my 'Heidi' pie was, as usual, delicious. Packed with chunks of melt-in the mouth sweet potato and with the full-favoured twang of goats cheese, it's no wonder that this pie is a favourite with meat-eaters and vegetarians alike. I love the garlic undertones that come through with each mouthful and the spinach which laces itself though the other ingredients, tying everything together inside the perfectly textured pasty casing. This really was a treat on a mundane Saturday afternoon and using the 'Voucher Cloud'* deal of two Pieminister meals for £7 made the visit all the more rewarding!
The Boy opted for his personal favourite, 'The Matador', which combines free-range British beef and chunky chorizo sausage. The addition of green olives and butter beans in a sherry marinade balances the carnivorous bite of this pie and makes for a very tasty combination of flavours and textures. In fact it was at this point when all conversation with The Boy was lost as the only sounds I could hear from across the table were cave-man style grunts of appreciation!
All in all, another faultless Pieminister experience. Well, almost faultless, I did have to pop out to a nearby pub to use their toilets as the café doesn't have any. That aside, I urge fellow Bristolians, (and anyone else for that matter), who have not had the full hit of a decent pie, mash and gravy meal to hot-foot it to one of the Pieminister outlets – with smiley service and patriotic local food on offer, the experience can only be described as...gert lush!
And now for the second opinion...
The Boy gave Pieminister a clean 9/10 and in three words described his visit as 'Perfect Pie Paradise!'