Renato’s (as it’s universally known) has been a much-loved favourite on Bristol’s drinking landscape for more than 40 years. Ask anybody who’s anybody in the Bristol arts scene and they’ll be able to tell you more about it than just its location. To artists and theatre-goers alike the place is quite simply legendary.
Just a few doors down from the Bristol Old Vic, the warm and welcome hospitality here makes Renato’s the natural destination for pre-show eating or late-night socialising.
Dating from the 17th-Century, the building has a unique atmosphere stretching out over two floors. Downstairs the bar is the perfect location for quiet early evening conversation or an after-work drink, before later developing a shoulder-to-shoulder party feel as the pizzas fly from table to table. The walls are festooned with photographs of actors and vintage posters from the Old Vic and you can rub shoulders with artists, art students, musicians and journalists plus some serious stage stars. Upstairs offers the perfect balance between elegance and informality, where you can relax in the charming heritage interior, which is now available for private hire.
There’s a wide range of wines and some of the best bottled beers (Polish, Belgian, German and, of course, Italian) in Bristol. Draughts are Moretti, Courage Best, Kronie, or ask for the award-winning Menabrea lager. It comes from Piedmont in northern Italy, the birthplace of the eponymous Renato, who headed this much-loved, family-run taverna. Traditional Italian pizzas provide a fabulous accompaniment to the general bonhomie. Whether you are nipping in for an early evening drink or fancy settling down for the night, Renato’s is just the place for enjoying the best of company.