A sincere, surprising, and delicious treat was had at the Beefeater Bar + Block, rivalling every other I have ever been to. There was an immediate warm welcome from a staff member who said that someone would be with us right away, and right away he was.
We were greeted by Jon who took us to our table, and shared with us the tips of how to read the menu and offered the suggestion of the Butcher’s Block of the day which was ‘Brisket’. Jon also alerted us to some unavailability on the menu which was a great thing to do at that stage before either my guest or I had the disappointment of committing to something that they did not have.
As we delved into our menus, we were pleasantly greeted by Damiana who looked after us throughout the evening, and we were amusingly surprised to see that she had given us beef popcorn to have as an appetiser. Damiana was excellent at both hosting and caring for her customers.
The Menu was full of suggestions but neatly ordered which made it easier for us to navigate our way round. It had vegetarian options across each section, so not to intimidate the impromptu herbivore. For starters, both my friend and I opted for two prawn dishes – ‘Garlic King Prawns’, cooked with white wine, garlic and butter (£7.50) – which was generous in portion and flavours bursting around your mouth like that of a pinball machine. I had the ‘King Prawn Cocktail’, done in a Bloody Mary rose sauce with avocado, tomato, lettuce and cucumber (£5.95) – fresh ingredients all around, and plenty of it, but I just felt that the avocado was an ingredient too far, and for me it upstaged the King.
Sometime later we received our mains, ‘Brisket’ slow-cooked for three hours in a copper pot, and it benefited from the chilli garlic salsa provided that both lifted the flavour and gave it depth (£18), while I had the pièce de résistance ‘10oz Spiral Cut Fillet’ (£24.50) – marinated in garlic and parsley. It was a cut above the rest. I asked for it rare, and it was grilled to perfection by grill-chef Kieran. A side of ‘Buttermilk Onion Rings (v)’ (£2.50) was ordered, which I did not particularly like as the batter was like skin, and the buttermilk drained away the taste of the onion, but I appreciated the freshness and the lightness of the side.
Generosity of portions was the theme throughout the evening as the ‘Cheese Block for Two’ (£6.95) had three thick chunks of brie, cheddar and stilton with fruits, chutney and crackers – it was a party for three more like. I bravely took on Damiana’s ‘Triple Chocolate Brownie’ (£5.95) suggestion which came hot with vanilla ice cream perched on top. I thought it tasty and filling, but a couple of mouthfuls of the chocolate were burnt.
Overall, the atmosphere and the natural charm of the staff made the Beefeater a place that both my plus one and I are looking to return to and getting on the phone to our friends and suggest they pay a visit!
REVIEWED BY: Alex DaSilva
ADDRESS: 3-6 Waterloo Street, Birmingham, B2 5PG
PRICING: £££ (explained)
TIPPING POLICY: At your discretion, except on parties over 6.