Nothing screams satisfaction like a gooey, hearty helping of Mac ‘n’ Cheese. In fact, the more cheese the better, bring it on. No longer just a side dish, it's the return of the mac and it's having its time to shine. We sent Natalie on a discovery of the filthiest mac & cheese joints in Bristol.

Alp Mac

New to the Bristol scene, Alp Mac are serious about all things Mac 'n' Cheese. After spending their winter months in the European Alps, the gang decided to bring the alpine cuisine they'd been enjoying back to the streets of Bristol. Influenced by dishes such as poutine and tartiflette, the menu is exciting and varied - with options you've probably never seen before (buffalo chicken mac anyone?!). You also have the choice to pimp your own Mac 'n' cheese using an array of condiments... seriously does it get any better? These guys are currently popping up at several different markets in Bristol, so it's worth visiting their website or social media (@Alp_Mac) to see where they'll be next.

Urban Standard & North Street Standard

Both the Urban and North Street Standards have garnered a bit of a reputation for their Mac ‘n’ Cheese, and once you've tried it, it’s not difficult to see why. The 'Truffled Mac ‘n’ Cheese’ on the menu comes drizzled in truffle oil, with added mushrooms, caramelised onions and then topped with breadcrumbs. Sounds dreamy right? Well that’s not all. If you’re feeling particularly dirty, there's also the option of slathering BBQ pulled pork on top... could there be a better hangover cure?! Available as a main or just on the side, it's definitely worth paying them a visit. 

Photo Credit - ZZZONE photography 

Soul Fish

Not to be mistaken for 'just another fish and chip shop', Soul Fish on Gloucester road provide a slight variation on the classic Mac ‘n’ Cheese as part of their soul food menu. These come in the form of their delicious Mac 'n' Cheese bites. For those who might be unfamiliar with them, let us break it down for you. Deep fried into a cube and covered in breadcrumbs, these are essentially tiny bites of heaven. Filled with a gooey Mac ‘n' Cheese filling, the combination of crunch teamed with the softness of macaroni has to be tasted to be believed. They are incredibly addictive (you have been warned).

Grillstock

Big-hitters Grillstock are renowned for their big bad-ass food. Their portions are not shy, and the Mac ‘n’ Cheese here comes as a side dish. However, if you enjoy a good meat fest then this is where it becomes the perfect accompaniment. Made with their in-house cheddar sauce, you can't go far wrong with the distinctly creamy taste. Our top tip, however, is to order the Brisket burnt ends, which you can use to mop up any of the glorious leftover cheese. Cheese. can. never. go. to. waste.

The Ox

If you fancy going a bit more formal for your Mac-attack, The Ox offer a Mac ‘n’ Cheese side as well. Like everything else they serve, it's delicious and is also a real treat for the eyes. Topped with crunchy breadcrumbs and slightly crispy on top - it's all about delving into the first layer for that satisfying crunch, before allowing the soft melted cheese to follow, before then polishing off the rest. It goes perfectly alongside one of their signature steaks.

Smoke & Glaze

You need to keep your eyes peeled on Smoke & Glaze’s specials board, because their Mac 'n’ Cheese features on it regularly. Specialising in southern soul food, you can trust these guys to serve up an authentic portion of this dish, although it's what they top it with that makes it special. Every plate comes with truffle brioche crumb as standard, but you can also choose between chorizo, crispy beetroot or pearl barley black pudding to go with it. Now we don’t want to tell you what to do, but black pudding and Mac ‘n’ Cheese is a match made in food heaven. You can currently find the Smoke & Glaze family at The Pipe & Slippers on Cheltenham Road.

Pigsty

Different again but nevertheless still delicious, is the famous 'Pig Mac' from the Pigsty boys. This one of a kind burger is made up of a seasoned pork patty, slow roast BBQ pulled pork and Mac ‘n’ Cheese baconnaise. All served up in a soft brioche bun with slaw. The distinct flavor of the cheese cuts nicely through the smoky meat whilst the soft texture teamed with the crunch of the slaw makes for one delightful dinner. Pigsty have hit the nail on the head when it comes to the ultimate in comfort food and taste with this one. It’s a real treat. Photo credit - PigSty Facebook Page

Published -24th March 2017