Sam Sohn-Rethel

Sam Sohn-Rethel graduated with a media studies degree before going straight to work under head chef Barney Haughton at Quartier Vert, in Bristol. It was there that he says he learnt how to use the best ingredients to make simple but perfect food.

Sam then moved to London to work for a short time at St. John’s restaurant before moving to Moro where he began cooking authentic Spanish dishes using real charcoal and wood-fired ovens.

He then returned to Bristol to help open the Lido restaurant with Matt Williamson before following him to his new restaurant Flinty Red. After time spent away from the kitchen when he became a dad, he launched the instantly popular Manna bar. After 18 months, he was approached to open the kitchen at the new Bells Diner and Bar Rooms where he continues to cook strictly seasonal Spanish and Mediterranean inspired food over real charcoal and wood.

The iconic Bell’s Diner was opened in 1976 and retains its quirky, welcoming feel and a commitment to only playing vinyl!

Bell's Diner & Bar Rooms
Imaginative European menu in a cosy bistro with hardwood floors, dashes of blue and kitsch trinkets.
More about this venue

Pork Spare Ribs

By chef Sam Sohn-Rethel


Season the ribs with salt and heavily brown in a saucepan with the vegetable oil. Remove the ribs from the pan and add the sliced onions. Caramelise the onions and add the Pedro Ximénez, thyme, bay leaves, chilli, honey, star anise, garlic and tangerines. Add the chicken stock and bring the pan to a simmer. Return the ribs to the pan; cover and cook over a gentle heat for two and a half hours.

Meanwhile, burn the leeks and peppers over a barbecue, under a hot grill or over a gas flame until heavily blackened all over; leave to cool. Gently peel the skin away from the vegetables to leave the soft, sweet flesh. Tear into bite-sized pieces and dress with the vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt, chilli flakes and parsley leaves.

Once the ribs are tender, remove from the pan. Discard the star anise and bay leaves and transfer the sauce to a food processor and blend until smooth; season with salt to taste. Plate the dish as pictured to serve.

Ingredients for four servings:


  • 1Kg Pork Belly Ribs, Cut Into 2Cm Pieces
  • Salt, To Taste
  • 200Ml Vegetable Oil
  • 2 White Onions, Thinly Sliced
  • 100Ml Pedro Ximénez Sweet Wine
  • 1 Sprig Of Thyme
  • 2 Bay Leafs
  • 1 Dried Chilli
  • 2 Tbsp. Honey
  • 2 Star Anise
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 2 Tangerines, Peeled & Quartered
  • 500Ml Chicken Stock

Charcoal Grilled Pepper & Leek Salad

  • 4 Leeks
  • 2 Red Peppers
  • Cabernet Sauvignon Vinegar, As Needed
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil, As Needed
  • Chilli Flakes, As Needed
  • 1 Bunch Of Parsley, Picked

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