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10 Kings Road,

(0117) 946 6461 

The ViewBristol Review

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Review byBenjamin Norris24/10/2008
Hidden away down a side street in the heart of Clifton Village, this small bar and eatery is as chic as they come, and serves interesting – if not always perfect – main meals and bar snacks until 11pm.

The Venue
Amoeba may be compact – two small floors and a patio area - but it manages to maintain an effective minimalist and effortlessly stylish look throughout. The seating is low, slouchy and comfortable, and the venue as a whole is pristinely tidy.

The People
With its wide, low tables and brown leather pouffes, Amoeba is a great place for sharing a light lunch with friends. The vibe is constantly mellow; the subterranean dining area is softly lit, a perfect complement to the retro fittings, and for the past few years the venue has been championing local artists by displaying and selling framed paintings and photography throughout the building.

Although it can get very busy in the evening, the hidden location ensures relative tranquillity during the daytime, and the staff seem more than happy to converse at great length with customers (if prompted).

The patio at the back of the restaurant could be a far more pleasant place to sit if got any sunlight, but due to the positioning of the surrounding buildings it remains a little gloomy and cold at all times. However, the potted plants and stylish outdoor seating demonstrates that effort has gone into improving the space for their obviously highly valued customers.

The Food
Amoeba serves pub food with a contemporary twist and a sense of fun. The baked sweet potato (£5.95) is served with feta cheese and a sweet, delicious red onion marmalade, but unfortunately the potato is far too large and the toppings too few to stop the meal from becoming a bit of a chore to eat after a while. It is, however cooked very well; the flesh of the potato is soft and rich, and the skin crisp with olive oil and a light rubbing of salt. The feta is a little uninspiring and a touch too rubbery, but the marmalade lifts it beautifully.

The plate of hummus, olives and pitta bread (£3.50) is a classic and hearty side dish; the hummus is homemade and wonderfully rough and chunky, with a strong sesame taste cutting through the lime juice, and the olives are a deep and juicy variety that are no doubt a favourite for all who visit.

The Drink
The bar stocks an impressive variety of bottled beers (generally around £3 each), with a huge range of Belgian beers as well as other European and English classics. The Hoegaarden Grand Cru is a rare treat, as is the delightful Banana Bread Beer, both of which go very well with the hearty but elegant menu.

The Last Word
The menu may need a little fine-tuning, but there is little doubt that Amoeba is one of the most stylish and laidback of all Clifton’s bars and cafes, and a very enjoyable place to meet people and escape the outside world for a couple of hours.
Amoeba has been reviewed by 2 users

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