Bring the Family
We've always loved a great pub tour - and this week's favourite virtual visit is no exception.
Standing on the crossroads in Bristol's Staple Hill, The Cross Hands started life in 1853 as a traditional coaching inn.
In recent years, it's undergone significant refurbishment, establishing itself as a pub offering good food, a friendly, relaxing atmosphere, and where the whole family is welcome.
With bags of space to sit inside and out, The Cross Hands has a large courtyard area at the front, along with an enclosed garden at the back of the building. Spotlights and heaters are dotted around to help boost the light and the weather for those who love to sit in the outdoor air.
There's a spacious play area for children, with swings and a wooden playhouse set on all-weather astro-turf. Stretching across the wall behind you can't miss the cheerful seaside mural which brings a splash of colour and summer to the garden space.
Inside The Cross Hands, stone tiled floors, wood panelling and chandeliers continue the comforting traditional feel. White walls and eggshell painted woodwork give a light and relaxing feel to the space, with huge windows letting in plenty of natural rays.
Home from Home
As you round the corner from the bar to find extra tables and seating, a cosy 'lounge' area awaits. Leather sofas, comfy chairs, coffee tables and huge book case holding books, board games and toys provide a great space to chill with a drink or two and perhaps a quick round of Trivial Pursuit.
For larger groups and private get-togethers, there's also a sizable function room upstairs, complete with its own fully stocked bar.
Mixing the Flavours
With so much capacity for diners, it's clear that food plays a big part of the hospitality at The Cross Hands. Pub classics like burgers and steaks are accompanied by a range of other offerings, including mussels, authentic curries, and special foody events like 'Chef's Taster Evenings'.
And wait, was that poached rhubarb crumble served with horseradish ice cream we spotted on the dessert menu?
Said owner, Derrick, "Our Head Chef has worked in a number of top restaurants, including Michelin starred, so is not afraid to experiment with flavours."
With The Cross Hands only a short distance from the Better Reach office, we look forward to following up our virtual visit with one in person soon.
Find the Cross Hands at 1 Staple Hill Road, Fishponds, Bristol BS16 5AA. They're on the web at www.thecrosshandsbristol.co.uk
Date: 04 March 2016
Author: The 360 Company