Widely regarded as one of the best places to eat authentic Italian food in Bristol, this neighbourhood restaurant in Westbury Park is a sound choice. Dark wooden chairs and tables, leather banquettes along one side and a wall of pattered wallpaper make a smart, yet simple backdrop to a menu that offers some surprises in addition to the kind of dishes you expect from a good-quality trattoria.
Kick off with garlic sourdough pizza bread with fior di latte cheese, grana padano and black pepper, or maybe gin and citrus cured sea trout with rhubarb and ginger salsa, blood orange and toasted focaccia, before considering nailsea fillet steak with potato and porcini al forno and Italian greens or even John Dory fillet with Cornish brown crab risotto and bottarga.
Those in the mood for pizza can choose from four options which include a simple Margherita with Fior di latte, Tuscan extra virgin olive oil and basil; a pizza topped with marinated aubergine, peppers, cherry tomatoes, garlic oil and basil; and one with tiger prawns, anchovy, semi-dried tomatoes, rocket, gremolata and fresh chilli. There are more options on ‘Pizza Night’ every Monday, when every pizza is just £7.95 when you order a drink.
Anyone who prefers pasta can indulge in authentic options such as rigatoni with ox cheek ragu, pancetta, montepulciano and grana Padano, or wild mushroom pappardelle with white wine, cream, truffle and grana Padano. Gluten-free pasta is available on request and many of Prego’s dishes can be made vegetarian by omitting grana Padano.
Finish things off with a slice of homemade tiramisu, a scoop or two of Marshfield Farm ice-cream or sorbet, or an Italian cheese plate combined with a glass of organic Limoncello for the full Italian experience. Prego is busy most of the week, especially on Monday nights so it’s worth booking in advance.