Comfort Inn Birmingham
Birmingham, EN B5 4DY
Phone: (44) 121 6431134
Fax: (44) 121 6433209
Despite an unpromising exterior, this lively city centre Greek restaurant is worth visiting. The food could not be more authentic if it got up and smashed the plate it had been sitting on. Customers choose three courses from a set menu, including favorites like moussaka or meze for one is available at reasoanble prices. All dishes are freshly prepared by Greek chefs, and there's Greek dancing every night - you don't have to join in, but after a couple of bottles of retsina who knows? Oh, and if you take a cowardly friend along, an English menu is also available.
Ever since its opening in 1975 the aim of this restaurant has been to teach the English the difference between a balti and a korai (its Pakistani equivalent), and instill a knowledge of true Indo-Pak cuisine. Fresh green chillies liven up the chicken jalfrezi, and king prawn sagwala is another much-ordered dish. The menu at Shah's Restaurant is extensive and the décor clean, tidy and new-looking. Sit back, relax, and allow a medley of spices to titillate your tongue.
Yes, it has one of those rather incongruous-sounding names, but New Happy Gathering is a well-respected establishment and claims to be Birmingham's first Cantonese restaurant. Its food comes highly recommended in the Good Food Guide, it's reasonably priced, and the staff are affable. There's a buffet service enabling you to gorge yourself silly and a more exclusive range of dishes on an à la carte menu. They also offer a set lunch for GBP5.99, which is a four-course meal consisting of soup, fresh salad, a main course and fried rice.
The Italian restaurant Filini, located in the suave Radisson Blu Hotel, offers the best of authentic Italian food. Located on the first floor of the hotel, this restaurant spells class and elegance. It offers a scrumptious breakfast menu and a la carte lunches and dinners. The authentic Italian cuisine lives up to its name at this place. The bar inside the restaurant serves as a perfect place to wind up at the end of your meal at the restaurant. It serves delicious cocktails and beverages, and is open from Monday to Saturday, 6:30p to 11p. Call or visit their website for more information.
Chung Ying Cantonese Restaurant is an institution in the city of Birmingham, and stands out like a sparkling jewel among the heaps of Chinese eateries that dot this city. Try their chefs time-and-tested recipes which will keep you coming back for more.
Since its opening in 1971, Maharaja has been receiving praise from all directions - the Good Food Guide, the Michelin Guide and the Good Curry Guide, to name a few. In addition, Olive Magazine awarded it the 'Top Quality Indian Restaurant' award for culinary excellence in 2005. So, you can expect nothing but the best when you decide to trot down. What's more? In spite of these accolades, the food, which is North Indian and Mughlai in origin, is not at all overpriced. While the tandoori specialties and curries bear strong Indian flavors, the chef's selection of three courses is highly recommended.
Chung Ying Garden is one of the more critically established Chinese restaurants, and deservedly so. The décor reflects a desire to be seen as elegant and exclusive, with golden statues, imposing columns and soft lighting conjuring a mood of relaxed ostentation. A range of Cantonese dishes is offered from three menus: à la carte, banquet and a special menu for "the Chinese public". And as the restaurant seats over 300, it shouldn't be too hard getting a table. The opening of a sister restaurant, the Chung Ying Cantonese, testifies to the popularity both of this venue and the cuisine.
Marketed as Birmingham's only Cuban restaurant, El Paraiso also dishes up Mexican and South American fare that is, in their words, “the true representation of paradise”. That may be going a little far, but the food is generally very good and cooked with more imagination than at your run-of-the-mill Mexican restaurant. Candlelight and the sound of trickling water creates a restful atmosphere, but they could do without burning incense - there shouldn't be any need in any restaurant to mask the aromas coming out of the kitchen.
A very imposing place, and one of the largest Chinese restaurants in Brum, the China Court is in the center of Chinatown and just a chopstick's throw from the Arcadian Centre and Birmingham Hippodrome theater. The interior of this distinctively oriental building has been decorated in authentic style, and the menu contains over 100 dishes. The vegetarian range is extensive, although seafood is the house specialty. A set menu for four includes two types of starters and six main dishes, with rice and vegetables. Not a cheap meal out, but it's good value for money given the quality.
This restaurant overlooks New Street, which, whilst it is no Champs Elysee, is undoubtedly more attractive now that it has been almost totally pedestrianized. It's an elegant place, as it should be since it's part of the plush Macdonald Burlington and serves an eclectic mix of traditional and continental fare. Examples include fillets of trout and scallops in a fennel barigole and lamb with spinach minted mousse. If that sounds a little too rich, a three course table d'hote menu is available. There's also what is called an "ever evolving" wine list, which one presumes is a good thing.
Perhaps Birmingham's most eye-catching bar, Bacchus is located underneath the luxurious Burlington Hotel. Its interior consists of a gaudy mish-mash of styles, ranging from Egyptian to Gothic, that is truly breathtaking. Some excellent, if pricey, food is served all day, including duck spring roll to start and braised shank of lamb as a main course. A two-course meal from the à la carte menu costs GBP18. Go, if only to sit in a wrought iron cage and be eyeballed by a suit of armor.
McDonald's may be the best known restaurant chain in the world but, as is usual with very popular places, it's not regarded as the best in its field. Still, millions of punters worldwide must find something appealing about this king of burger restaurants. Frequent promotions (often linked to film releases), good children's facilities, the cheapness of the product and the ease with which it can be bought, consumed and forgotten have all helped keep McDonald's top of the tree. This is the most central of the company's 28 Birmingham restaurants, and is handily located near to New Street station. Not exactly sophisticated dining, but fast food doesn't come any faster than this.