Asian cuisine is hot (and we don’t mean in a spicy way, necessarily) in Bristol right now. Across the city, you’ll find Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese restaurants and street food stalls, all vying for your attention in a bid to serve up the tastiest East Asian delicacies.
Whether you’re new to East Asian food or a connoisseur of the region’s delights, we know you’ll want to dine somewhere that’s authentic, that offers food packed with flavour, and that will suit any occasion, from a speedy light bite to a multi-course taste sensation. Have a browse of our top Bristol Asian restaurants – we challenge you not to get hungry while reading…
Seven Lucky Gods
The newest opening on our list, you’ll find Seven Lucky Gods at the buzzing Wapping Wharf development on Bristol’s harbourside. Housed within converted shipping containers, it’s not a massive place – but it’s definitely making waves in Bristol’s food scene. Serving izakaya-style Japanese food – similar to tapas format – you’ll find all sorts of tasty fusion creations, from the warming chicken katsu arancini to the meltingly perfect crispy battered squid. There’s a fantastic cocktail menu on offer too, if you’re looking to turn your meal into more of an occasion.
Describing their offering as “modern casual Asian dining”, Dangun on St Nicholas Street in the city centre serves Korean and Thai food from a sparsely decorated restaurant. But don’t let the place’s looks deceive you – sit down and browse the menu, and you’ll be faced with some seriously difficult choices. Will it be a classic fiery Thai green curry, served with a pile of steaming fluffy rice? Or the Korean deopbap rice bowl, with plenty of veggies and pickles, and soy and chilli sauces to add as much or as little extra seasoning as you like? Their Korean tacos are definitely worth checking out, too: we love the tender, slow-cooked beef shin which really does melt in the mouth…
There are two Woky Ko restaurants in Bristol: one at Wapping Wharf, and the latest opening – Woky Ko Kauto – on Queens Road. They’re the brainchild of former MasterChef finalist Larkin Cen, who serves up beautifully presented Asian cuisine in a relaxed, minimalist environment. One of the highlights of his menu? The bao: fluffy, steamed buns with a range of fillings – the duck with sweet umeboshi plum is fantastic! There are bowls of steaming ramen to slurp and some tasty noodle dishes too…and if you’re craving something sweet, try their dessert bao, stuffed with coconut ice cream and gooey salted caramel.
Walk through the doors of Vietnamese restaurant Pho Lounge on Gloucester Road, and you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to the Orient without the need for an expensive flight. Hanging lanterns, huge wall murals and plenty of bamboo plants give the place a cosy, welcoming atmosphere, and the substantial menu is a great representation of Vietnamese cuisine. Start with the filled crispy rice flour and coconut milk pancake or the fragrant pork spring rolls – and we’d recommend the aromatic beef brisket pho for the main: a fresh-flavoured rice noodle soup, the broth slowly simmered for 18 hours for a sweet, beefy flavour.
Also on Gloucester Road is the tiny Ramen Ya, serving up some of the city’s best Japanese food. Exposed brickwork, plenty of dark wood and dimmed paper lanterns give the place a cosy and intimate feel – and the staff are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable too. As the name suggests, their giant bowls of ramen noodle soup are the stars of the show: the tonkotsu (roast pork) made with slow-cooked pork broth is out of this world. We’re big fans of their deep-fried kara-age chicken too – and with a children’s menu on offer, it’s a great family dining choice if you’re looking for something more adventurous for the kids than sausage or chicken nuggets and chips.