Curry houses, new wave British haunts, and some very, very good sushi. It’s a great time to dine out in Birmingham.
Carters of Moseley
Moseley is home to one of the country’s most exiting talents – those of Brad Carter. The chef has earned high-tier recognition while keeping things creative but simple (dishes rarely stray from their three components) and fun. Birmingham should be proud.
Anderson’s Bar & Grill
Due to commercial demand, slow-growing British rare breed cattle are widely overlooked. Well aware of the flavour they yield, Anderson’s are one of the few bringing them back to fashion. It’s made the restaurant one of the best places in the country for a good piece of beef.
At just 10 covers, Gaijin is tiny. But what it lacks in size it makes up for in ambition, rapidly becoming known as the razor-sharp Japanese restaurant Birmingham lacked. Besides, the intimacy helps to add to the experience, bringing you closer to the theatre that is the sushi chef at work.
Using ingredients not necessarily British by origin but grown locally, and revolving around a menu dictated by what’s good that day, Folium is modern British in every sense of the term. Prepare to be dazzled by the way they deploy turbot, dashi, and hay butter.
Some say it’s worth visiting the new-ish Barwick Street restaurant for the stunning purple blossomed tree taking up much of the basement. Turn your attention to the honed menu, however, and you’ll find the kind of modern Chinese food Britain has largely missed out on until relatively recently – baby squid, salmon sashizza, Szechuan hot pot and all.
Some have labelled The Viceroy as another old school Indian. Indeed, you’ll find classics like vindaloo and rogan josh on their menu. But, regardless, don’t think this a bad thing. The Viceroy does everything right, from the lamb pasanda to the fragrant chicken biryani.
Ask a passing Brummie where’s good and Adam’s will invariably be somewhere on their list. Fully deserving its local favourite status, it’s definitely worth seeing for yourself. Anjou pigeon, Lavinton lamb, and white peach soufflé are just a few highlights.
Based out of what was once a butcher’s shop, the Harborne Kitchen team aren’t interested in fluttering their eyelids at critics or guide inspectors. Instead, they just want to do their own thing – in their own words, ‘playful contemporary cuisine’. Dishes are beautifully presented while the staff turn out in jeans and t-shirts, which should tell you everything you need to know.
Maribel is a promising addition to Brindley Place. In fact, during the year it’s been open, it’s become one of the best places to eat in the area. Strap in for three hours, leisurely working through their 10-course tasting menu, and you’ll see what we mean.
Another ol’ time Birmingham favourite, Simpsons has been on the map for 25 or so years. It’s not showing its age however – the restaurant has adopted a neo-classical approach compared to its more formal former years. While some regulars lament the change in philosophy, Luke Tipping et al are making sure it’s at the top of its game no matter what.
Looking for something a little different? Find more top Birmingham restaurants on OpenTable.
This is a guest post from freelance food journalist Hugh Thomas. He’s contributed to Foodism, Time Out, Great British Chefs, and is part of British Street Food’s small team of vigilant writers. Find him on twitter @hughwrites.