Saturday, 14 July 2012

Blues Bar and Grill, Plymouth

Being back in Plymouth for a few days while flat hunting, after not being here for over a year, would be a crime if we hadn't treated ourselves to a meal here. One of my favourite restaurants, the Bar and Grill is located down in the Barbican, the historic, quaint part of Plymouth next to the sea, and a bustling hotspot for food, drink and music. I fell in love with the tourist frequented part of Plymouth from my first visit. While my feelings for the rest of the city have waxed and waned during my first two years of university, the Barbican reminds me why I originally chose to move to Plymouth.

The Bar and Grill is slightly apart from the rows of restaurants and bars that line the length of the Barbican, next to the harbour. Inside awaits two floors - the main bar downstairs with tables and sofas, and a corner allocated to the night's music act. In the evening the upstairs is opened, extending the restaurant capacity.

The wood-panelled walls are adorned with photographs of blues legends - Billie Holiday, Robert Johnson, Stevie Ray Vaughan - complementary to the choice of music. There are also live acts playing most evenings, including regulars such as Vince Lee and Al Wallis (a.k.a The Wildcards), Jill Cole and Thomas Ford. My fiancĂ©, having a huge love for blues music, is in heaven in this place, and being introduced to local musicians is definitely a highlight of living in Plymouth.

And now onto the most important part. The food is, quite simply, amazing. Everything I've tried here has never failed to impress (and believe me, that's a fair few meals). Lots of the dishes are American inspired (think Cajun spices and Tex Mex sides) and there is plenty to choose from - pasta dishes including huge homemade meatballs; nachos smothered in salsa, sour cream and guacamole; and seafood dishes making the most of the restaurant's fantastic location.

But the must-try part of the menu is the burgers.

Juicy, thick homemade burgers chargrilled to give an incredible smokey taste, served in buns with chips and quite possibly the best coleslaw I've ever had. And if that wasn't enough the burgers come with a variety of toppings to choose from.

On this occassion, Tom went for the bacon, cheese and barbecue burger.

I opted for a burger topped with a generous helping of perfectly spiced chilli and sour cream.

Much needed and appreciated after a day trawling through Plymouth looking for our new home for the year!

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