Any discerning food lover will have heard of Glynn Purnell, Birmingham’s celebrated food hero and chef owner of Michelin starred and multi-award winning restaurant Purnell’s. I’ve always wanted to dine there, but haven’t yet had the chance, so I was delighted that the first BBC Good Food Show bloggers lunch was to be held at Purnell’s little sister restaurant Purnell’s Bistro which is also the home of Ginger’s Bar.
We were treated to a cocktail masterclass with the undivided attention of a rather charming bar man. He led us through 6 different cocktails, giving us tips, techniques, unique flavour ideas and some flashy flairing too!
This one was rather intriguing – the Lamb Provencal… made with lamb fat infused rum, cranberry and rosemary – almost like fruity, cold gravy but much nicer than it sounds!
The bar tender had lots of special ingredients tucked away behind the bar, from herb infused spirits and fruity mixes to this sticky almond syrup.
We took our cocktails with us to our table where three courses of specially selected dishes were served.
I love butter, so was delighted to see they had their own delicious ‘home-whipped’ butter to be served with home-baked bread.
I started with the butternut squash veloute and ravioli which was packed with flavour, rich and creamy.
Our lovely bar man then supplied us with another refreshing cocktail to cleanse our palettes before the next course.
I couldn’t resist the slow braised beef with shallots and creamed spinach, it was as tasty and flavourful as it looks here.
Desserts included a seasonal crumble with ice cream or chocolate torte with red currant sorbet and caramelised hazelnuts.
We were very well looked after and it is clear that customer service is very important. Prices are great value and although advertised as a ‘bistro’ it certainly felt special and would be perfect for a celebration or special occasion. The bistro gives Glynn fans a taste of his expert cooking, while offering honest (read hefty) portions, a more relaxed dining experience and prices that wont break the bank.
I loved it, but do still want to visit Purnell’s… I’ll start saving now! Have you been to either restaurant? If so, what did you think?