T G I Fridays

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 2 reviews

The Venue,
Lysander Road,
BS10 7UB

(0117) 9591987

The ViewBristol Review

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Review byLucy Holtum19/11/2008
American-style food in a laidback fun environment. The Bristol branch of this national chain is well worth a look for no frills good quality food, friendly service and fantastic cocktail selection.

The Venue
Situated on the Venue trading park near Cribbs Causeway Shopping Centre, TGI Fridays is smack bang next to the Vue Cinema. This makes the restaurant very popular with cinema goers – and great if you want to grab a meal either before or after a film.

The restaurant itself is a fair size, with a large square raised section in the centre which is where you will find the bar. You're greeted by staff as soon as you enter and taken to your table, or directed to the bar and given a device which flashes when your table is ready.

The restaurant, in keeping with the food, has an American feel. It has the usual tables and chairs, a few booth-style tables and Americana-themed items dotted around for decoration.

The tiled floor is very slippery if you're wearing heels – you have been warned! TGI Friday’s also has the customary big screen, which although in the bar area, is visible from about half of the restaurant. This can be a good or bad thing depending on what’s on.

The People
TGI Friday’s always seems to be popular with families, younger couples and groups of young people. The atmosphere changes depending on when you visit and how busy the restaurant is.

Naturally, visit early evening and the place is filled with kids and families who have just seen the latest Disney offering at the cinema next door. TGI Fridays is easy going, relaxed and fun.

Staff are very friendly, almost exclusively young, and somewhat quirky! Dressed in distinctive uniforms, the staff also have the duty of dimming the lights and singing a special birthday song to any poor unsuspecting diners whose companions have tipped them off about their special celebration.

This display is amusing at first, but during a busy service you may have to endure this ritual three or four times – and it quickly starts to become more than a bit annoying.

The Food
TGI’s has a huge menu. Dishes have an American influence, many of which are spicy (Mexican influenced) or have a Deep South influence.

Starters include skins to the brim, potato skins filled with bacon and cheese with a sour cream dip, bruscetta topped with tomatoes and a balsamic glaze, buffalo wings and chicken dippers.

There are also a range of mixed starter plates to share. Starters are around £4 each for a single dish, the sharing plates are around £8.

For the main dishes, there is an even wider range to choose from. Steaks, served with an interesting smoky Jack Daniels glaze, a wide range of burgers, ribs, chicken, pasta dishes and salads are available. TGI’s also serves a selection of Mexican dishes too, fajitas, nachos and quesadillas.

Many dishes are served with home fries, served with skins on and well seasoned with an interesting herb flavoured salt. Portion sizes are very large - most people struggle to eat more than two courses, and a main course generally leaves you feeling very satisfied.

The food is really good quality, always freshly cooked and has a very comforting feel about it. These dishes are not at all healthy – even the salads are laden with dressing and deep fried bits. Prices vary but a pasta dish or salad costs around £9, ranging through to the steaks and ribs which are nearer £15.

If you can manage one, TGI Fridays also offers a range of rich and calorie dense deserts! Again with an American feel, cheesecake, chocolate brownie-style platter, waffles and a popcorn sundae are among the offerings. These are priced at around £5 each.

The Drink
The bar is well stocked with bottled and draught beers, a good range of spirits, about a dozen wine choices and a good selection of soft drinks.

But cocktails is what TGI Friday is known for. A wide range of cocktails are made in front of you, all the old classics are available including Martini, Cosmopolitan, Long Island Iced Tea – as well as innovate new drinks like a Silver Mercedes (contains Smirnoff vodka and cranberry juice mixed with sparkling wine and topped with sherbert). Cocktails are expensive and cost about £6 each (depending on what’s in them).

A range of thick milkshakes are also available, as is a range of non-alcoholic cocktails. These aren’t cheap at around £3 each – but well worth a try as they are delicious and some of them are really unusual.

The Last Word
Although not exactly fine dining, TGI Fridays is a great family friendly restaurant with big portions of good quality food, at reasonable prices. The service is great and you can’t fault it as a good place to grab a meal before going to the cinema, or after a marathon shopping trip!
T G I Fridays has been reviewed by 2 users

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Content updated: 18/11/2011 11:00

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