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Portwall Tavern, Bristol

Portwall Lane

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 7 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Moby Duck left this review about Portwall Tavern

A narrow fronted pub but hard to miss as it is now painted in a bright azure blue. Inside its a fairly basic single room with some ornate floor tiling, normal tables and chairs provide sensible seating, the bar is at the far left hand side of the room and boasts four handpumps, my visit was about 10.00 in the morning for a decent breakfast and just two beers were on from Goffs and Bristol Beer Factory. I was the only customer in at that time so I can only imagine there would be a decent atmosphere with a few punters in.

On 9th October 2019 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1357 recommendations about 1343 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

E TA left this review about Portwall Tavern

Something of a hidden treasure, this small single-room Victorian back-street bar has survived the urban renewal around it and provides a great contrast to the nightclub next door. The floor is boards, the décor sombre, the staff pleasant and the food good value. It's especially busy at lunchtimes, though for some reason it's quiet most evenings. There are various tables for diners, space for drinkers and convivial atmosphere. Of the 5 handpumps only two were on; I had a pint of WTF which was in excellent condition, and had I not been driving, I would have had many more. Convenient for the City centre and very handy for the marina, I'm sure I shall be back.

On 28th August 2017 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2614 recommendations about 2582 pubs]

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Alan Winfield left this review about Portwall Tavern

The Portwall is a narrow fronted pub that is fairly close to Temple Meads station.
Once inside there is a single oblong shaped room which runs to the rear,the room is carpeted and has comfy bench seating and some normal tables and chairs.
There were four real ales on the bar,i had a drink of Bath Ales Jem,which went down very well,i only noted one other real ale which was Electric Bear Red Bear.
There was a TV on showing rugby and the pub was fairly busy on my early Saturday evening visit.
I really took to this pub,one i could stay in for a good session,a good pub to end my Bristol crawl in.

Pub visited 4/2/2017

On 16th April 2017 - rating: 8
[User has posted 6113 recommendations about 6113 pubs]

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Rex Rattus left this review about Portwall Tavern

Well, the attractive two-tone blue paintjob has been replaced by... battleship grey of course. The interior seems to be unchanged from previous reviewers' visits though, it being still a basic drinkers' pub as far as I could tell. It's effectively a single, fairly narrow room, with the bar counter at the end on the left. It has something of a 70s feel about it (nothing wrong with that, although I'm glad it doesn't still sell 70s beer!) with a red carpet and red upholstered benches along the side facing the bar. There were a couple of tall tables/tall stools, but the majority of furnishings were of the more traditional kind. A brass oche in the middle of the carpet indicates the presence of the dartboard behind some seating on the left; and on the walls are some prints of local scenes as well as some (modern by the look of it) cut glass mirrors. I also spotted a newspaper rack on one of the walls, but containing no newpapers when we dropped at Saturday lunchtime.

The beers don't seem to have changed much in the last year or so either, with Bath Gem, Butcombe Bitter, Cotswold Spring Brewery Codger, and Prescott Hill Climb on. This is a pretty good selection by any standards. I saw pizze advertised at £5.95 a pop, plus 50p for extra toppings.

This is the sort of pub where you can stop off for a quiet and relaxing pint - which is exactly what we did.

On 21st November 2014 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2577 recommendations about 2495 pubs]

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Quinno _ left this review about Portwall Tavern

An unassuming edifice situated opposite the inspiring St Mary Redcliffe church, I had noticed the exterior of this place had been given a lick of attractive two-tone blue paint a while back and was looking generally well-cared for so decided to venture in as a wildcard choice on the way to get my train. I wasn’t disappointed as the long, narrow interior has been done up in a fairly cosy manner. There were a number of etched glass mirrors, red carpet throughout, wallpapered walls in places and the ceiling boasted some intricate moulded cornices. The front windows were double-glazed, something you don’t often see in older pub buildings. Four ales available: Arkells Kingsdown, Bath Gem, Butcombe Bitter and Cotswold Codger. My Codger was in pretty good nick. Wine lists were perched on the tables; apparently this place gets a fair bit of custom from the offices that have opened up nearby which probably explains their presence. It was sadly quiet on my Monday evening visit but the punters who passed through (including a thirsty between-meeting deputation from the church opposite) were all in unusually good spirits and appeared to be regulars given the amount of chatter with the friendly landlord. The pub’s cleanliness extended to the almost spotless toilets. A dart board was available though there was a table in the way on my visit. Piped music was up-tempo 1960’s pop - nice. Overall this is a case of making the most of what you've got and I really enjoyed my visit. Yes, it won’t win awards for the biggest ale selection or the most traditional interior but it’s a place that deserves to do well and it’s definitely on my radar for a return visit before the end of the year.

On 24th May 2013 - rating: 8
[User has posted 4042 recommendations about 4030 pubs]

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Malden man left this review about Portwall Tavern

A small and narrow frontage to this deceptively deep basic pub. The bar is to the rear on a side wall, lots of red carpet and seating, standard haphazard seating to the front area with a few high stools and a drinking shelf opposite the bar with mirrors opposite. The bar itself is of dark wood with an intricate carved back, there is a proper fireplace on a side wall and decor includes local B&W pictures. The pub has a dartboard.
A small group of drinkers were watching racing on the TV, the pub feels like an old fashioned local, no signs of food being eaten while I visited but home made pizzas were advertised.
Five handpumps, one not clipped, Bath Ales Gem, Butcombe Bitter, Cheddar Ales Potholer and Cotswold Codger. A surprisingly good list for the small pub it is and I enjoyed my pint and my time here before dashing over to Temple Meads for my train home. I'd pop back again when in Bristol.

On 2nd November 2012 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1687 recommendations about 1663 pubs]

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Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about Portwall Tavern

This traditional, if sparely-furnished, pub provides a welcome stopping point on the more scenic walking route between Bristol city centre and Temple Meads station. Nothing very distinctive about the interior, but it seems to be effeciently run. Basic food menu, but good value. Reasonable selection of beers and ciders on handpump, including local offerings such as Cheddar Ales Potholer.

On 11th December 2010 - rating: 7
[User has posted 6222 recommendations about 6222 pubs]

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Blackthorn _ left this review about Portwall Tavern

Traditional old style pub with lots of red carpet, red carpeted barstools, an ornate wooden bar and etched mirrors on the walls. Decent enough ambience, although very quiet on a recent Tuesday night visit. Perhaps the £3.05 for a pint of Thatcher's Gold is a tad on the expensive side. There's a large plasma in the corner that was showing football.
The only beers on were Butcombe and Bath Ales Barnstormer, although there were also pumps for Jem and Doom Bar. Ciders were Blackthorn and Thatcher's Gold.

On 30th December 2009 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1749 recommendations about 1684 pubs]