Spitfire, Bristol

I owe this meal to my clearly incredible videography skills thanks to the slo-mo setting on my phone and some fortunate luck in a competition that Spitfire ran. The prize? A mighty tomahawk steak, an inch or so thick and not far off the size of an A4 binder. It was shaping up to be a challenge between two of us and originally, I thought it was for one.

This was also our first ever trip to Spitfire and I can only say we wish we’d ventured here earlier. Our server was friendly and the drinks flowed smoothly. But honestly, the service could’ve been terrible and I still would’ve eaten here for the glorious food.

The steak arrived- medium rare as we were advised for the cut and the sheer size of it. Alongside we had fries, dirty fries (yes- we ordered two types), coleslaw, braai bread and most importantly (not), a salad. The fries were excellent, crisp with a fluffy inner and heavily salted as we scrabbled around with our forks to get there first.

Fries covered in mustard and pulled pork in a white pot

Dirty fries. Enough said.

The dirty fries were great too. Smothered in pulled pork and sweet American mustard they didn’t last long either. My only gripe was that there simply wasn’t enough of them. The pulled pork was that ethereal smoky sweet that only it seems capable of achieving. It was one of those dishes where you were sticking the fork in whilst still making your way through a mouthful. I was a conveyor belt that evening and proud of it.

barbecued bread covered in cheese.

Next level carbs. The braai bread.

I’m glad we chose the braai bread too. To best describe it I think is it’s South Africa’s answer to the Italian’s focaccia, barbecued. A glorious light and airy bread, smothered, and I mean smothered- in cheese. The only way this bread could be elevated is if you put the steak in the middle of it and made the ultimate barbecue sandwich (Spitfire, I hope you read this).

large steak on the bone with fries, salad and served on a black plate

The tomahawk steak in all its glory. Perfection.

The coleslaw was fresh and zingy, not too much sauce, not too little. It had a good crunch and was my preferred choice of vegetables as I cocked an eyebrow at the salad I knew I was going to leave until everything else was consumed. But the steak, already it’s fourth mention. I don’t know where to begin. Value wise- the size alone could comfortably feed four with sides. But none of it was chewy or gristly. It was all superb, tender bite after tender bite of steak finished on a barbecue. When it was finished I even took up the bone eyeing for those tender white bits of fat that come with a good steak. Naked or with sauce, there was no perfect way to eat the steak, it in itself was the prize.

doughnut cut in half layered with vanilla ice cream and custard.

Not a small dessert. The custard doughnut burger.

Somehow… I mean well it is me- we managed to share a pudding. The custard doughnut burger. Perhaps an ill-conceived idea with how full we were but we pressed on. In short, it’s a halved doughnut with a hefty scoop of vanilla ice cream, drowning in custard and topped with chocolate sprinkles. It was a sublime sweet which filled one’s pudding stomach to the brim and perhaps took the edge off the meat, garlic, barbecue breath I was suffering from. The custard was thick, not far off trifle standard which I love and not a crumb was left. Be sure to visit, and from the way the crowds moved around us- perhaps book ahead too.

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