Birmingham’s vibrant hospitality scene suffered a blow due to lockdown, but the time we’ve all been waiting for is here! Bars and restaurants with outside seating will soon be allowed to open their doors with one condition – table service only. Well, that sounds good to us, we don’t mind not having to get up to order.
We’ve pulled together our favourite spots that we’ve missed during lockdown that will be welcoming guests from April 12th. Whether you are looking to wow clients or kick back after work, you’re sure to find your next favourite place. They’re likely to be busy, but we think these gems are worth waiting for. Don’t blame us if you can’t get a table!
The Button Factory
If the sun is shining, there is no better place to be than The Button Factory. It’s nestled right in the centre of Birmingham’s historic Jewellery Quarter and is famous for its spacious rooftop terrace. It also recently opened a beer garden that safely boosts its seating capacity. This place will definitely impress your workmates!
The Button Factory is well known for its creative, global menu that is sure to satisfy anyone’s taste buds. All cooked on an open-flame Robata grill, the menu boasts everything from succulent chicken to swordfish and satisfying vegan dishes. Grab yourself an Aperol Spritz, cocktail or pick from a wide range of beers and wines.
Birdies Bar & BBQ
Birdies comes from the creative duo behind the insanely popular attraction Ghetto Golf. Located in Digbeth’s Custard Factory, right alongside Ghetto Golf, Birdies offers a colourful open setting with ample safety measures. You can enjoy an alcoholic beverage or indulge in some street food at its ‘Locked & Loaded’ kitchen.
Locked & Loaded features a wide range of plant-based options for the vegans and vegetarians out there. Whether you’re after tacos, loaded fries or burgers, they’ve got you covered – the perfect accompaniment to a night out. You can also usually find some live music here.
The Canal House
Cheese fondue. Hanging kebabs. Baked Nutella and croissant pudding.
If that isn’t enough to sell you on this place, it also sits right on the canal (duh). Expect amazing views and a calmness that you won’t get anywhere else. It’s the ideal location to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre but still want to enjoy top-quality food and drink. The venue has an expansive outside terrace where you can book yourself a table. Winner of West Midlands Pub of the Year 2019, The Canal House is a great choice for elevated pub food and a wide selection of ales.
If you’re looking for somewhere to enjoy great food, great beer and great music, you can’t go wrong with Zumhof. They’re an official Tankovna, meaning they get unpasteurised Pilsner Urquell delivered weekly straight from Pilsen. You won’t find a fresher beer!
For a bite to eat, Zumhof’s ‘Food Märkt’ hosts some of Birmingham’s greatest street food joints. When they open, choose from bratwurst courtesy of Schwënker, Bonehead’s exquisite fried chicken, fresh Rudy’s Neapolitan pizza and much more.
Zumhof is known for putting on events most nights of the week – everything from drag shows to brass bands and touring artists. It’s the perfect place to let your hair down after work. This opening is no different, they have a whole week of DJ sets planned so you can enjoy some music while chowing down on some top-notch grub.
Chung Ying Cantonese
One of Birmingham’s oldest Cantonese restaurants Chung Ying has plenty of awards under its belt that prove its excellence. It won Restaurant of the Year at Birmingham Awards 2019, Best Oriental Restaurant at Midlands Food Drink and Hospitality Awards 2019 and reached the top 3 of Britain’s Best Chinese Restaurants.
You shouldn’t need more convincing that Chung Ying is a gem, but it also boasts the UK’s largest selection of dim sum – 108 varieties! Dim sum is small plates of bite-sized steamed dumplings and yes, they are delicious. They also have an extensive menu of large meals and a massive dedicated vegan menu. Their outdoor seating area is covered and heated, so you’ll be protected against the elements.
The Distillery is aptly named; they distil their own small batch Roundhouse Gin in a massive copper still that you can’t miss. You’ll also find an unparalleled selection of gins and unique tonics to take your gin obsession to the next level. Who knew that a pomegranate and basil tonic was what your life was missing? Partner a wide range of options with knowledgeable bartenders who can guide you towards you next favourite drink and you can’t go wrong.
You can find this place right on the canal and its large terrace has lots of benches to accommodate guests. Make sure you get a freshly made wood-fired pizza to accompany your drink, or choose from the rest of the expansive menu. If you’re lucky enough to have some sun, we can promise you that you won’t want to leave.
The Old Crown
A visit here is truly a trip through history. The Old Crown is Britain’s oldest secular building and has existed since 1386. That’s not a typo. The pub has a traditional feel that comes with such an old building – timber beams, exposed brick and cosy decor. The large, enclosed outside area is always bustling, and has pops of colour and a modern vibe that is starkly contrasted to the inside of the pub.
Located in the heart of Digbeth, Birmingham’s creative quarter, it’s a real landmark that demands a visit. This a great location to get your team together for some non-work-related fun. They have socially distanced events as part of their reopening including quizzes, local DJs and even a New Orleans-style brass band. It’s no surprise that The Old Crown was a finalist in the Great British Pub Awards and winner of Traditional Pub of the Year.
We are sure that at least one of these places could become your new favourite food and drink destination. Birmingham’s hospitality scene may have gone away for a while but it’s sure to bounce back strong with the support of avid locals. Have fun – it’s been a long time coming – but above all, make sure you are following coronavirus guidelines. Keep yourself, staff and other punters safe!