Everywhere to eat in Birmingham before you die
From fine dining to budget, we’ve got you covered
For those of you from Birmingham, it’s easy to get lost in the city’s architecture and shopping. Many know of the Bullring and various sites like the Churchyard, yet only a minority would be able to name the best places to grab some grub.
While not particularly known for its restaurants, Birmingham is home to an array of both high-end and budget places, suitable for everyone.
Opus, Cornwall Street
The team at Opus pride themselves in “celebrating beautiful market fresh British produce” and update their menu daily. As a Michelin-recommended restaurant, it’s one of the more expensive places to eat – but for those who can afford it, you won’t be left disappointed.
The atmosphere exudes fanciness and although it’s seen by critics as more middle-end in terms of prices, it’s more of a restaurant to take your parents to (so you’re not left out of pocket).
La Vera, Martineau Place
Prices at this pizzeria are super cheap – my margherita cost £4.90 – but it is a quality operation, making good use of its wood-fired pizza oven. The earthy smell of the crust gives the pizza a more authentic taste and the chefs don’t scrimp on the toppings.
Critics might sneer at certain aspects of La Vera and those who haven’t visited before may wrinkle their noses at the location, but if you want great, affordable pizza, then this is the place to go. After all, as a student, trying to pay for Domino’s every time you want pizza can certainly take its toll on your bank account.
Adam’s, Waterloo Street
Another Michelin-starred restaurant in the heart of the city means another expensive night, but one that’s all worth it.
Much like Opus, the attentive staff, a refined atmosphere and gorgeous food all adds up to give customers a unique experience of fine dining.
Asha’s, Newell Street
“Adding a little spice to life.” Asha’s is the world’s first international Indian restaurant group and currently operates ten restaurants in six countries around the world.
I remember visiting here for the first time with my family and some friends during Easter last year and as someone who prefers home-cooked Indian food, even I have to say that this was some of the best food I’ve tasted. Rich, aromatic and spicy – all the things I love in my food and so much more.
Again, this is pricier than a takeaway but if going for a special one-off meal with some friends, then this is definitely an option to try. I’ve been back at least two or three times since.
The Atrium UCB, Summer Row
Highly commended by the AA, this student-run restaurant is one of two run by UCB students, under the guidance of senior chef lecturers and and food service experts.
A typical menu might include fish and shellfish, premium beef, lamb, poultry or game, and an array of vegetarian dishes. The food speaks for itself and the Birmingham Mail placed it among the Top 10 Restaurants in Birmingham.
Chung Ying, Wrottesley Street
My friend recommended this to me and after visiting with my mum a few weeks ago, we both absolutely loved it. As one of the oldest and best Chinese restaurants in town, it certainly has the food to support the reputation it’s built for itself.
The plates came very professionally presented, the food was both brought out quickly and full of flavour and the staff were courteous and friendly. The menu boasts a large variety of foods and for the quality of the food, the prices are very fair, making it another place to enjoy with friends on a student budget.
As a lover of Chinese food, this restaurant did not disappoint and I’m sure I’ll be back for more soon.
Cafe Opus, Brindley Place
For those who want the same taste as Opus, but with a lower cost, Cafe Opus at IKON offers exactly this. With sandwiches and cakes to enjoy alongside some tea, it is one of the best places to lunch.
Although an offshoot of Opus, it’s more suited to students than the larger restaurant due to its cheaper prices and more relaxed atmosphere, while still offering the same quality of taste in the food.
Minmin Noodle Bar, Bromsgrove Street
Another favourite of mine, I discovered this when looking for somewhere quick to eat before a show at the Old Rep. There is a large variety of food on the menu to suit both meat-eaters and vegetarians with very reasonable prices and a quick service.
The vegetable tempura was a great starter and the pork ramen I had after was delicious – the Chinese and Vietnamese influences in the cooking from the chef provided a great blend of flavours and the light, airy atmosphere made this the perfect place to grab some food before a show.
Anderson and Hill, Colmore Row
Think of it as a more niche version of Subway – fancy sandwiches, meats and cheeses with a very high-quality taste to them.
Peel & Stone, Water Street
Situated under the arches of Snow Hill Station, this small, cafe-like restaurant offers great lunches and desserts. In addition to brilliant food, a change of menu every day means that the variety the restaurant offers is sure to suit the tastes of most people – great a for a large group to visit together to enjoy some sweet treats.
So whether you’re a native to the city or just visiting for the summer, checking out the food scene should definitely be on your list of things to do.