Pieminister, Stokes Croft: Guest Review
The lovely Kathie Auton visits Pieminister on Stokes Croft to see the changes that the team have made…
You’re probably already a Pieminister lover, you probably already think their pies are cracking and find excuses to pop into one of their eateries. But Pieminister have just added a whole new layer of temptation. They have done up their Stokes Croft branch. Yes, it’s still got that relaxed pop-in vibe that it already had, but now it’s bigger, comfier, more restaurant-like. There’s a cosy booth, a piano, cool neon signs and…a bar. STOP PRESS – You can now have a beer with your Pieminister pie. Or a cider of course.
At the risk of sounding a bit boozy, being able to have a drink at Pieminister is a wonderful thing. A wonderfully obvious thing really and they’ve done a really good job of it. The beer and cider lists are lovely, long and local. Wines wise, there’s a house red and white leaving plenty of room for a thoroughly enjoyable range of brews, from Burrow Hill’s Cider Bus to Bristol Beer Factory’s Southville Hop. And if for a second you thought pie and beer wasn’t gastronomic enough for you, you can even get advice on matching your drink to your pie; an excuse for a tasting session if ever there was one…
The menu is different too. Not in any way which would alarm Pieminister loyalists. The pies are all there, all the many, many award-winning pies. You can still make your pie a ‘Mothership’ by ordering it to come with mash, minted peas, gravy, cheese and fried shallot sprinkles and on a Tuesday you can do this for a fiver. But Pieminister has branched out too. There are mash topped pies available in two sizes, sharing Plates like the ‘Putsborough’ (Crayfish, Cockles, pickles etc.) and the ‘Westcombe’ (Westcombe cheddar, gourmet pork scratchings etc.). There’s cockles too, just ‘cockles’ and you’ve got to respect any menu that lists just cockles. You can have your pie ploughman’s style. You can have pudding or ice cream by the scoop. If you need any further persuading, this might just do it; they are doing chips too. Pie and chips.
We had an excellent multi-generational meal there recently and it was great for all of us from three-year-old to grandparent, next time we’re taking Great-Granddad too. Eat early if you’re with the family and until 11pm if you’re out on the town. It’s friendly, they bring you water without you having to ask, there’s talk of kids colouring-in on the way, it’s cool, it’s relaxed, it’s well lit, it’s great value for money. And it’s still Pieminister. We already thought we had it good and now it’s even better.