What’s going on in Swindon’s bars and restaurants.


Swindon is nothing if not resourceful and as we ease out of lockdown it is heartening to see restaurants, bars, pubs and cafes re-establishing or reinventing themselves, not to mention some exciting launches.

One new name that is jumping out of the cage is Funky Grilla, bringing new life to Regent Circus with its Korean menu. It offers a huge variety of tapas, skewers, salads, dumplings, seafood dishes, Korean themed BBQ, fried chicken, bulgogi, fajitas, pizzas and a myriad of desserts.

“We’re doing something totally different for Swindon," co-owner Sat Nijjar told the Swindon Advertiser. As for the unusual name, “We were just sitting down and wanted to come up with something that doesn’t have to be associated with anything specific, but also sums up the atmosphere and the mood we’re going for. We want it to be upbeat and fun.”

“There will be a cocktail bar and up-to-date music, we hope to have the occasional live house DJ. We’ve got the cinema right there and the Battle Bar is going in next door, so it fits just right with that.

Boom Battle Bar is coming soon to Regent Circus and expectations couldn’t be higher. If you fancy shaking up your nightlife and want a bar experience that offers more than the traditional pint and music, then you will need to visit this new and exciting adventure bar that boasts crazy activities straight out of your childhood imagination.

Activities at Boom Battle Bar will include the likes of Bavarian Axe Throwing, Electric Darts, Skee Ball, Crazy Golf, and much more, so you can be sure to enjoy an evening of drinking and entertainment unlike any other in Swindon. 

It’s not just their outlandish activities that will have Swindon’s punters queuing round the block though, their spectacular array of cocktails and drinks aren’t to be missed as their team of expert bar staff supply you with wonderful creations all evening. 

“I think the Battle Bar will bring a lot of excitement to the area and also lots of footfall,” says Sat Nijjar. We can’t wait!

One venue that has no problems with footfall since they opened one year ago (when they have been open!) is The Vault Bar/Lounge near the top of Victoria Road.

“We have travelled all over the world trying different cocktail bars to get ideas so I can do something we are passionate about,” says co-owner Alex Mastro. “In particular, we were inspired by the ‘hidden bars’ and places like Paradiso in Barcelona, 18th Room in New York and Anonymous Bar in Prague.”

“We wanted The Vault to have a select, intimate feel; the kind of vibe you would expect from a members only club, and that’s reflected in the décor, which is very traditional with wood panelling and lots of black and gold features.” Needless to say, the cocktails are equally sumptuous.

Another new kid on the block in Old Town is Food Magpie on Wood Street. This buzzing café and deli offers some amazing focaccia sandwiches, savouries, imaginative salads, mezze, sweet muffins and tarts, fish nights and even fashion shows.

We especially love their breakfast tortilla with egg and chorizo. The accent is on locally sourced and organic, and you can also enjoy a great classic playlist (not too loud) while you eat - expect plenty of cool Prince, Marvin Gaye, Steely Dan and the Doobie Brothers.

One restaurant that has been open a while but recently showed up on Visit Swindon’s radar is Rios Brazil on Bridge Street. This cosy and very friendly venue offers all-you-can-eat, fixed price rodizio style dining, with Brazilian-style buffet and an awesome selection of grilled meats served on skewers at your table.

Like many rodizios, at Rios Brazil you are provided with a coloured card. Green, on one side, indicates to servers to bring more meat. Red, on the other side, indicates you are bursting at the seams and pleading for mercy. Mouth-watering doesn’t do the food justice!