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The Essential Guide to Bristol
10 January 2009
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Las Iguanas

Venue Image
Venue Image
Unit A South Building,
Anchor Square,

(0117) 927 6233 

The ViewBristol Review

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Review byLucy Duggan19/11/2008
Las Iguanas started life as an independent south American bar restaurant, andits popularity saw it expand into a national chain, the latest extension of which is the relatively new branch located by Bristol’s Harbourside.

The Venue
In the ultra modern and bustling Millennium Square, replete with futuristic fountains and giant mirror ball, Las Iguanas' appealing al fresco dining area beckons passers-by into the restaurant bar.

Its decor is an expensive-looking combination of vibrant colours, rich textures, and flowing lines set off by precision lighting. It has very much the feel of a themed, if not slightly tacky restaurant, with a Rio’s Christ the Redeemer overseeing festivities from the back wall of the restaurant.

You can’t help but think that nothing like this exists in South American, over-the-top postmodern pretension being the order of the day. Gaudy it may be, but it’s impressive to look at none the less.

The People
It’s central and popular location makes it a favourite with tourists and day trippers as well as the usual mixture of office workers, locals and students you would expect to see in the city’s main bars.

Loud Latino music and the high-turnover of custom combines to create a buzzing atmosphere, and the service is impersonal but friendly enough and, most importantly, efficient.

The Food
The menu is Latin American inspired. Little dishes of olives, chorizo and peri peri chicken and the like are available from their selection of tapas throughout the day. If you get there before 6.30pm you can three dishes for £12.60 or five for £21.

Generously portioned substantial dishes, such as Brazilian Moqueca, a light Brazilian currym, which is £8.50 for the vegetarian option, or £10.50 for salmon. Vegetarians are very well catered for.

The food’s quality is on the right side of good but nothing to shout about, but they make up for it with flamboyant presentation. Depending on what you order, the meals here can represent decent value for money – they have a fixed lunch deal available before 6.30pm when two courses, a starter and a main, are £7.90, and a drink of either beer or wine is £1.50.

The Drink
They have slightly inflated bar prices but do a good two for one offer on drinks before 7pm. They serve first rate smoothies, have an extensive choice of wine and Champagne. Bottled beers include Mexican and Peruvian options, and on draught they have San Miguel.

Special mention has to be made of their cocktails, notably their Caipirinha (£5) made from Las Iguanas own-label cachaca. And from Sunday to Monday you can two cocktails for the price of one, or before 7pm on every other day.

The Last Word
For a transporting assault on the auditory and visual senses, Spanish beers and good, greasy Mexican food in a swanky setting, look no further than Las Iguanas.
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