A specially curated guide to help you enjoy the next 48 hours (or more) in Bristol
COMEDY|THE BIGGEST LAUGHS IN THE SMALLEST CITY
Wells Comedy Festival, May 27-29
The Wells Comedy Festival – a “weekend-long comedy jamboree” ( The Guardian ) – takes place in Somerset from Friday 27-Sunday 29 May. Over the weekend, England’s smallest city will play host to 40 comedy shows at a variety of venues across the city. These shows include four gala night performances, each with their own surprise line ups.
Reginald D Hunter, Spencer Jones, Aaron Simmonds, Olga Koch, Sean McLoughlin, Sunil Patel and Babatunde Aleshe have been announced as the final acts to join the bill for Wells Comedy Festival 2022. These acts join the already announced Harry Hill, Phil Wang, Al Murray The Pub Landlord, Shaparak Khorsandi, Isy Suttie, Mark Watson, Mike Wozniak, Lou Sanders, Paul Foot, Mark Thomas, Nick Helm and many more.
Al Murray, Harry Hill and Mike Wozniak already have sold-out shows, and tickets for Phil Wang, Lou Sanders and Isy Suttie are limited.
Visit the Wells Comedy Festival website for further information: wellscomfest.com
Featured image: Isy Suttie | Image credit: Matt Crockett
OUR MAY ISSUE: OUT NOW
Our May magazine features a collection of great reading by our team of wonderful writers as well as beautifully presented advertising by Bristol's best businesses. We hope you'll enjoy the read!
15,000 copies are delivered door to door, and you can pick up a copy at many places around town – including our stands at Waitrose, John Lewis, House of Fraser and Harvey Nichols.
And if you would like to have a copy sent in the post every month, then we offer a postal subscription for just £30 for 12 issues, £15 for six issues or buy a copy for just £3.95. UK mainland prices. For Euro and World zone subscription prices – see our website.
Crime Comforts: in conversation with novelist Ann Cleeves
There’s something reassuring about crime, says best selling novelist Ann Cleeves. That is – when it stays tucked between the covers of a book.
Crime novels might be fit to bust with gruesome goings-on, but there tends to be “a sense of order restored and justice done” at the end of one, Cleeves observes. With a total of 35 novels under her belt, Cleeves is one of the UK’s most prolific – and most popular – crime fiction writers.
When your senses go 'ting!' and your tastebuds sing – that's umami. But what, exactly, is umami?
Scientifically speaking, umami is the 'fifth taste' we identify after salt, sweet, sour and bitter. You know that powerful (often divisive) savoury flavour bomb delivered by, for example, Marmite, or Parmesan cheese, or anchovies, or mushrooms, or really good tomato ketchup? That's umami, working its magic. And this dish is umami magic personified: deeply flavoursome, salty-sweet and laden with personality.
White miso – a fermented paste made from rice, barley and soya beans – is a key ingredient here; there is no substitution, but fortunately it's readily available in high street supermarkets. The Mirin, meanwhile, can easily be swapped out with rice vinegar, dry sherry or dry white wine, all of which offer a similar result. Roasting the pan-fried, miso-glazed aubergines allows the sauce to caramelise slightly on the top bringing yet more sensory super-satisfaction to the party (if we want to get even more technical, that's the Maillard reaction in action, folks); if you're in a hurry you could grill the sauce-topped aubergines under a medium heat for around 6-8 minutes, but you'll somehow miss out on the depth of flavour that an oven-session brings.
This recipe serves two as a substantial main course accompanied by simple steamed rice (it works particularly well with wholegrain rice) but easily stretches to serve four as a side dish or as part of an Asian-themed feast.
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 5. Halve the aubergines and score the flesh in a criss-cross pattern, cutting all the way through the flesh without slicing through the skin. In a large frying pan, heat the vegetable oil over a medium heat and fry the aubergine halves, skin-side down, for around 5 minutes until the flesh has seared and softened. Turn them over, cover the pan with a lid, and cook for a further 3 minutes just to soften the skin.
2. Meanwhile, thoroughly combine the white Miso with the Mirin (or substitute), runny honey and minced ginger and line a baking tray with foil.
3. Put the pan-fried aubergines on the foil-lined tray, flesh-side up, and spoon the miso mixture into a flesh, making sure it really gets into the cuts and grooves. Roast for around 8-10 minutes or until golden brown, caramelised and bubbling on top. Serve hot, sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds and shredded spring onions.
2 large aubergines 2 tbsp vegetable oil 4 tbsp white Miso paste 2 tbsp Mirin, dry sherry, rice vinegar or dry white wine 2 tbsp runny honey 1 thumb-sized chunk of fresh ginger, peeled and minced To serve (optional): 3 spring onions, peeled and shredded; 1-2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
FOUR OF A KIND | SUMMER LUNCH
Words by Melissa Blease
4 Warm Salads
Chorizo, Feta and Avocado (serves 4)
Cut 8 mini cooking chorizo into thirds and sauté in a little olive oil over a medium heat until the chorizo has browned and is starting to release its lovely fragrant oil. Add 200g halved baby plum or cherry tomatoes to the pan, season well and continue to sauté until the tomatoes just start to soften (about 5 minutes). Meanwhile, whisk 2 tsp sherry or red wine vinegar with 2 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp Dijon mustard. Season to taste. Plonk a handful of watercress (woody stems discarded) into each of 4 shallow bowls and drizzle with the dressing. Scatter the dressed watercress with crumbled feta cheese and slices of avocado (you'll need around 200g feta and 1 large avocado in total) and top with the warm tomato and chorizo mixture.
Squash and Spinach (serves 4)
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 5 while you peel and chop 1 large butternut squash into bite-sized chunks (you'll need around 500g butternut squash in total). Tumble into a roasting tin, toss with 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp dried thyme and 4 cloves of garlic (peeled and crushed), season generously and roast for around 30 minutes or until the squash has softened and browned around the edges. Meanwhile, whisk 4 tbsp olive oil with 2 tbs sherry or red wine vinegar, 1 tsp runny honey and 1 tsp wholegrain or Dijon mustard. Plonk 300g baby leaf spinach into a large bowl and toss with the dressing. Season to taste, then divide the dressed leaves across 4 shallow bowls or plates. Toss the warm roasted butternut squash in the same bowl to pick up any residue from the dressing, then arrange over the leaves.
Puy Lentil and Goats' Cheese (serves 4)
Pre-heat the grill to medium-high. Chop 200g goats' cheese into thick slices, place on a baking sheet and grill for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is turning melty and starting to brown on top. Meanwhile, cook 2 x 250g vacuum-packed Puy lentils according to the instructions on the packet. Transfer the lentils to a large bowl while still warm and immediately drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil, the juice of half a lemon, one handful of finely-chopped fresh basil leaves, 2 cloves of peeled, crushed garlic and plenty of seasoning. Stir well. Divide the warm lentils across 4 shallow bowls or plates and top with the warm grilled goats' cheese. Serve immediately, scattered with more freshly-chopped basil.
Pancetta, Roasted Pepper and Butterbeans (serves 4)
In a large pan over a medium heat, sauté 300g cubes of pancetta (or smoked bacon lardons) in 2 tbsp olive oil until golden. Add 2 peeled, finely sliced shallots and cook for another couple of minutes until the shallots are turning translucent. Drain 1 x 450g jar of roasted peppers, chop into bite-sized chunks and add to the pan along with 2 x 400g tins butterbeans (drained) and a generous splash of sherry or red wine vinegar. Stir until heated through, season to taste and serve immediately on top of a tangle of rocket leaves.
WEEKEND WINE | SPANISH ROSADOS
Pinking up nicely
May officially heralds rosé season – although with so many delicious rosés doing the rounds we’ve been enjoying off-season guzzling for some time. While we love Idris Elba’s excellent Porte Noir, or Brad and Angelina’s Miraval, there’s nothing quite like celebrating the artisan, independent producers with a rich history of great winemaking.
Here are six superb Rosados from truly fabulous Spanish producers.
Rosado – Juan Gil Full-flavoured rosé from Jumilla in Spain, scented with nuts, toast and apricots while the mouth fills with red plums, cherries and cranberries. £17.50
Más Amor Rosado – Franck Massard Light, elegant complex and dry with vibrant freshness in the glass and a powerful fruity, herby nose. In the mouth there is a subtle minerality with a refreshing finish. £12.50
Las Fincas Rosado – J. Chivite Family Estates Intensely aromatic, with strawberry, pomegranate, raspberry, blackberry and rose petals. Smooth, textured, rounded and balanced. Long persistence of flavour on the finish with lingering notes of cherry pie. £17.95
XF Rosé – Vinedos Sierra Cantabria XF is a delicate shade of pink, like the inside of a seashell. The aromas are beautiful and expressive: juicy ripe pear, lemon zest and white peach. It has a lovely, effortless balance between delicate finesse and satisfying roundness, with flavours on the palate of citrus, melon, rose petals and golden apple. £28
Journey Collection Rosado – Ramon Bilbao Beautifully delicate pink. The aroma is of raspberries and rose petals – delicate, but with lots of personality. Just the same in the mouth, with superb juicy fruit character, refreshing acidity and superb length on the finish. Fabulous wine! £12.20
La Copa de Bobal Rosé – Bodegas Coviñas A beautiful bright raspberry pink rosé with wild strawberry and black cherry on the nose, with a trace of rosewater. The palate is perfectly balanced with plenty of fruit complemented by crisp lemony acidity and an elegant, mineral finish. £8.85
Click below to see a wonderful selection of Spanish Rosados at The Great Wine Co.
Founded back in 1929 by Umberto Cazzola, with a goldsmith’s workshop in Vicenza and developed through the family generations, FOPE is recognised as one of the finest luxury jewellery brands in the world.
FOPE is famous for creating the iconic Novecento mesh and the Flex’it collection – a superbly flexible and intricate gold weave that allows jewellery to be shaped into beautiful designs and is FOPE’s unmistakeable, signature style. Enjoying huge success since the late 80s and adored ever since, FOPE’s timeless designs and its collections are elegant and highly covetable.
Liven up any look with the Nailberry Jazz Me Up, a luxury nail polish in a vibrant coral hue from the brand's L’Oxygéné range.
In a universally flattering tone, the Nailberry Jazz Me Up nail polish features a glamorous coral shade that is full of exuberance to complement any style. £15
Click here to shop the nail polish from the Space NK website: spacenk.com; you can also visit the Space NK, Bristol store at 81 Queens Road, Bristol BS8 1QS.
BEAUTY | LAUNCHING TODAY
Chanel launches its Les Beiges line
Chanel is thinking big this summer. XXL product formats with multiple uses and ultra-sensorial textures for the face, body, and hair. Simple, sweeping, generous makeup application for a fresh, luminous and effortlessly natural look.
The new line includes the Les Beiges Oversize Healthy Glow Sun-kissed Powder, Oversize Kabuki Brush, Illuminating Oil, and Healthy Glow Bronzing Cream.
Shop the collection on the Chanel website: chanel.com
• CULTURE •
ON THE BOX | BOY MEETS BOY
Boy meets boy. Boys become friends. Boys fall in love.
When gentle Charlie and rugby-loving Nick meet at secondary school, they quickly discover that their unlikely friendship is blossoming into an unexpected romance. Charlie, Nick and their circle of friends must navigate the ever-relatable journey of self discovery and acceptance, supporting each other as they learn to find their most authentic selves.
Based on the graphic novels by Alice Oseman and starring Olivia Coleman, Kit Connor, Joe Locke and William Gao, Heartstopper is available to watch now on Netflix: netflix.com
THE MAGAZINE KIOSK |WHY WE LOVE PRINT
Curated by Daniel McCabe
Magalleria has just imported three editions of the mostly sold out The Local Project (TLP), an architecture and interior design magazine showcasing the vitality of the industry in Australia and New Zealand. If you didn’t know, domestic building design and construction down under is pretty sensational. TLP works as a regional platform utilising a range of mediums including print, video, digital and social media to explore and communicate developing ideas around design, innovative materials and everything in between to provide inspiration for architects and designers all over the world. If you’re an architect, an interior designer or someone just looking for design inspiration, the latest issue – running to almost 400 pages and weighing in at 2.5kg – is all pure, fresh air. £24.99
Magalleria is a Bath-based shop and online retailer, selling fine and interesting magazines from independent and selected publishers from all over the globe. Visit the website to find out more: magalleria.co.uk
• WHAT'S ON •
James Lisney recital tour, 21 May, St George's Bristol
Pianist James Lisney celebrates his sixtieth birthday recital tour with a programme devoted to the music of Fryderyk Chopin which features two celebrated piano sonatas. For many years regarded as a miniaturist, Chopin’s radical solutions to large scale form have passed the test of time and now take their place at the heart of the piano repertoire. The programme also includes the Fantaisie in f minor,Op 49, and the Impromptu in G flat, Op 51, tightly constructed works that display another facet of Chopin’s innovative and unforgettable mastery. Chopin elevated the Nocturne to the highest level of art, and the Op 55 Nocturnes reveal the dramatic and expressive contrasts possible within this genre.
Excitement building for this weekend's BS5 Art Trail
Final preparations for the second BS5 Art Trail are underway as artists and makers from across the city put the finishing touches to their work.
Taking place this weekend on 7-8 May from 11am-5pm, the popular event will showcase art at various venues around BS5, giving visitors the chance to explore the area as well as some exciting exhibits.
Celebrating creativity across the BS5 community, the event promises to be bigger and better than last year’s inaugural trail with homes, gardens, artist studios and group venues in BS5 open and over 80 artists taking part.
The trail will cover the communities of St George, Greenbank, Easton, Whitehall and Redfield. One of the venues signed up to display artwork is The Chocolate Factory in Greenbank. Mya Castillo, sales and marketing consultant for The Chocolate Factory, explains why they chose to be involved.
“Although fairly new the BS5 Art Trail is an important and exciting event on the calendar for this community so we jumped at the chance to be a part of it.
“We are opening up our visitor centre, to support local artists and their work. There will be event maps and visitor boards to help people navigate the trail, it’s going to be a great event.”
Included on the bill is art demonstrations and printmaking activities with BRAC (Bristol Refugee Artists Collective) at The Greenbank pub and flower making at Dawkins Ales with Invisible Army.
This year’s event maps have been printed by Whitehall Printers and CJ Hole are sponsoring the venue boards.
Maps will be available to collect from CJ Hole’s Redfield office as well as from other venues in the area and online at bs5arttrail.co.uk.
WIN a pair of tickets to Shindig Festival, 26-29 May, Dillington Estate
Shindig Festival are celebrating their seventh edition by giving away a pair of tickets, worth £175 each!
This year's Shindig Festival is taking place in a new location: Dillington Estate, Somerset. The sixteenth century house and hotel not only provides the backdrop but also some high-end accommodation. The party takes place in the beautiful, tree-studded parkland.
Shindig 2022 combines old-skool royalty and festival residents with many rising stars to ensure there’s something for everyone. Artists making an appearance at Shindig 2022 include De La Soul, Roy Ayers, Odyssey, Goldie – and many, many more.
There are no main stages, just a beautiful arrangement of stretch marquees. From watching circus to hearing spoken word or learning a new skill, there’s something for everyone. Bringing a healthy dose of foot-stomping funk and a packed programme of entertainment for all ages, Shindig Festival offers relaxation and revelry in equal measures.
Zookeepers at Bristol Zoo Gardens are overjoyed to have welcomed two new arrivals: twin golden lion tamarins.
The twins' birth is important because they are part of a vital European breeding programme to help protect golden lion tamarins. Brazil's Atlantic coastal forests, where they are found, are disappearing due to logging, agriculture and industry which put their future at risk. Golden lion tamarins are only found in a relatively small patch of forest, about three times the size of Bristol. This forest is often fragmented by large roads, which makes it harder for animals to move around and find suitable partners for breeding.
However, thanks to zoos, golden lion tamarins have become one of the world's major conservation success stories.
They were down-listed in 2003 from Critically Endangered to Endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List as a result of 30 years of conservation efforts. About a third of the current wild population of this species are descendants of zoo-born individuals that were reintroduced into their native habitat in the early 1990s.
The Bristol twins, who weigh about 60 grams each, live in the heart of the Zoo with their mum Missy, dad, Dourado as well as older siblings Manchego, Rae and Leicester.
Bristol Zoo Gardens will close to the public on 3 September 2022, before the new zoo opens at Wild Place Project in 2024. Throughout that period, Wild Place Project will continue to welcome visitors as usual. Find out more about the future of the zoo at: future.bristolzoo.org.uk
• PROPERTY & INTERIORS •
PROPERTY | EDWARDIAN QUALITY AND CHARACTER
Claremont Avenue, Bristol BS7
Offered for sale by Ocean Estate Agents
Situated on a tree-lined avenue in West Bishopston, well within catchment for Redland Green School, a beautiful four-bedroom family home with lots of space, light and character.
In brief, the accommodation comprises of an entrance porch leading to a bright hallway, a large lounge to the front and dining room to the rear, and a large kitchen with utility room. Upstairs are four bedrooms and a family bathroom.
Edwardian houses are very rare in BS7 so it's a treat to see one with so many of the features associated with the era, including beautiful stained glass, fireplaces, box bay windows and high ceilings.
The property is beautifully rounded off by a great sized tiered garden with the added benefit of rear access. There is also the potential to extend further into a large loft space.
The property is well located for Gloucester Road, famed for its independent shops, eateries and bars. The city centre and transport links are within easy reach as well as Whiteladies Road and Clifton Downs. Guide price £900,000.