How to nail a girls night out in Birmingham

Sugar and spice and all things nice

Sometimes you just need a night out with the girls.  The reasons are many and unimportant here – whether it’s a birthday, visitors, post-break-up, pre/post-exams or just because, the main objective is to have a great time, forget about any worries and PARTY.

Birmingham, being Britain’s second biggest city, offers plenty of choice for a brilliant evening and you, lucky reader, are about to benefit from the wisdom acquired from many a ladies’ night.  To those of you who’ve just confirmed you’ll be residing in the city from September: listen well, and listen good.  And, y’know, well done.


As we all know, dinner has to come well in advance so that you’re not still bloated by the time you get ready.  Obviously there are tons of great places to eat in Brum, but two places in particular will set you up for a night out.

If you’re feeling indulgent (i.e. piggy), try out the relatively new Rub Smokehouse: all-American BBQ food with American portion sizes.  They even have a dessert called Gookie Oreo Monster, which looks like a big, gooey, delicious mess – says it all really.  This will certainly line your stomach enough for it to absorb several shots of tequila later.

For somewhere a little more refined (where you have more of a chance of ending up wearing less of your dinner), try The Mailbox’s Bar Estilo – tasty tapas with a great selection, so ideal for having exactly as much or as little (yeah yeah, we know all about “eating is cheating”) as you want.

You’re drinking: Soft drinks at this stage – you’re saving yourself for later

You’re wearing: Comfy day gear – pre-shower slob stuff

Pre-pre drinks

Also known as:  the awesome bit before the night really begins where you’re all getting ready together.  Alcohol WILL be involved, as will seemingly endless questions like “Does this look OK?” and “Do you have shoes that would go with this?”  Many mirror selfies will be taken.

You’re drinking: Cheap wine (sparkling or otherwise); something mixed with Glen’s vodka

You’re wearing: A different outfit every 5 minutes


Moving to the official pre-drinks, expect the standard card and drinking games, international drinking rules (just agree which ones while you’re still relatively sober) and last-minute scramble for cabs.

Beer and cribbage…that’s how it’s done, right?

You’re drinking: Probably still wine, but with bits of everyone else’s thrown into the mix from when you had to do that dirty pint.  Oh, and the shots have started (probably with Cactus Jack’s).

You’re wearing: A great dress, decent top and jeans/leggings/lounge pants, perhaps some kind of eye-catching jumpsuit…except without shoes on at this point (why bother indoors?).

The bar

It’s a little out of the way, but Jekyll and Hyde near Snow Hill station is just wonderful and will feel like a real treat.  Abounding in literary references, stylised menus and innovative cocktails, this will play right into a sense of occasion – throw in a cocktail masterclass for something extra-special.  There’s even a Gin Parlour *sigh* and food if you’re peckish.

You’re drinking: The “Confectionery Corner”, with drinks like Lemon Bon Bon/Strawberry Laces/Pear Drops, is simply to die for.

You’re wearing:  Something statement and classy – at the very least, an unusual jacket which you’re still half-wearing to indicate that this is not your final resting place.


The dance floor

For a truly brilliant night of boogying, you can’t get much better than The Jam House.  Not your usual average club (if you want that, just go to Snobs), this Jools Holland-created venue is a place of sassy, brassy music guaranteed to lift your mood.  Nobody cares what you look like or how you dance – it’s just about having an epic night.

Alternatively, head to somewhere like Rainbow or the HMV Institute for something a little more down and dirty.  Some smart cookies might even pop home to change their clothes before embarking on a 6am-er…share a cab, anyone?

You’re drinking: Hardcore stuff now – shots, whiskey, other neat spirits..

You’re wearing:  For The Jam House you’ll want the same statement pieces as for Jekyll and Hyde (this is a classy night y’all!).  For the more “underground” (except so mainstream they might as well be overground) nights…whatever will keep you cool in a sweaty crowd.  Plus glitter and hair ornaments (hands up, how many of you will be doing the double French plaits?).


Got to be Big Bite.  Or just order a Domino’s to the next location you end up at for the…


Maybe now you can roll on to one of the late-night/early morning gigs, if you’re not already there.  But the night will inevitably go the way of all nights – back to someone’s house, flat or halls to carry on.  There will be music.  There will be weed.  There will be strangers making out next to you.  By this point, the size of your group may have dwindled due to booty calls, hook-ups and hangers-on…you don’t really mind now, as long as everyone’s safe.  Can’t be far to get home…can it?

Eventually you’ll all roll back to base with heavy eyes, stained cheeks, sore throats and heavy limbs.  Sign of a great night, my friends.

Asleep on the back seat

You’re drinking:  Whatever’s going – a beer, if you can still take the alcoholic content

You’re wearing: A borrowed jumper, hoodie, trackies and/or slippers; or maybe you’ve pulled and y this point you aren’t wearing anything. Rock on.

The morning after

Review the events (and photographic evidence) of the previous night if you dare – at the Selly Sausage, of course!  If you’re really tender and it’s a particularly special occasion you could always book in for a spa treatment at somewhere like Malmaison, The Cube’s theclubandspa or one of the high-end gyms like Bannatyne’s – could be a bit pricey, true (although it’s always worth checking out discount websites), but guaranteed to rid you of a mammoth hangover.

You’re drinking: Water.  Just water.

You’re wearing:  Whatever doesn’t exacerbate the nausea (like a dressing gown, your duvet, or what remains of your dignity).

I won’t bother trying to recommend drinking responsibly because we all know we don’t.  Just be safe, and try to avoid being hospitalised.