Restaurant Review: Slug and Lettuce @ Brindley Place, Birmingham19th January 2016
Slug and Lettuce is a cocktail bar that serves food, and it is a place where I have always had a good time, having booked it for my birthday a couple of years ago. Last night was the first time I had ever eaten there, and it was my guest’s first time there too.
The atmosphere was pleasant, and we were shown to our table promptly. Scanning the menu, gave us a quick indication of what Slug and Lettuce was about – standard pub grub. Across a five page menu, we noticed what stood out, and it was the very ‘bread’ driven sharers and snack-like dishes called ‘Something to Share’ and ‘Bread Winners’.
We played with the idea of going for the sharer of Manchego Fondue WARM TEAR-AND-SHARE POPPY SEED BREAD CROWN served with Warm Manchego Fondue and vegetable crudités, olive oil and balsamic vinegar (£9.45). However, once the waitress came to take our order, we were informed only then that there as ‘nothing to share’. They had no bread in that night, which was a shame as it looked interesting and different. So, we had to go for the bog standard type of starters – breaded mushrooms (£4.95) and calamari (£5.75). A lacklustre start to the evening.
We ordered a bottle of RIOJA TEMPRANILLO, CAMPO VIEJO, RIOJA, SPAIN (£20 bottle) – which was delicious and the temperature was perfect, not too warm but comfortably snug. Kudos for that. Also we were given water with lemon at the beginning which took the edge off the velvet texture of the Spanish sensation.
Looking at the menu, both dinner partner and I decided to try new dishes, and not go for traditional pub classics. I chose CHICKEN SOUVLAKI consisting of Lemon-&-olive-oil-marinated chicken breast, red onion & mixed pepper skewers, beetroot houmous, a crème fraîche & spring onion dressing and flatbread to wrap (£8.65), with a side of chilly coleslaw while my plus 1 ventured into the unknown with GOAT’S CHEESE AND MARMALADE Burger, with West Country onion Marmalade (£10.25). Both dishes looked presentational and were hot. I must admit the presentation excited me, and I jumped straight in, but found that certain chicken pieces were overly grilled and rubbery, which was unpleasant. The chilly coleslaw lacked any heat and tasted just like any other pub slaw. The burger, though tasty, was mushy, with Goat’s cheese and marmalade masquerading the flavour and quality of the burger.
Cookie Cup Explosion (£4.95) is one of my favourite desserts, so my face lit up immediately, and I had been flirting with the idea from the beginning of the evening. My plus 1 had Amaretti and Irish Cream Cheesecake, to be different. My dessert was almost perfect, with its gooey consistency and heat, though a little burnt in the middle. The cheesecake was more of an alcoholic mousse than any cheesecake I ever tasted before.
Overall, it was an average evening. Disappointed start with misinformation about the lack of Sharer options, and the trying too hard burger concept, as well as overly grilled chicken, all of which left us feeling dissatisfied.
Reviewed by: Alex Da Silva | @AlexMDaSilva
Address: Brindley Place
Water’s Edge, Brindley Place, Birmingham, West Midlands B1 2HL
Star Rating: **
Cost Rating: £££