Recently I attended an intimate showcase evening at The Cube which included dinner at Shogun: a teppanyaki and sushi bar.
I must confess I haven’t eaten at any of the restaurants in The Cube for sometime, although I have (over the years) visited most for birthdays and Wine Weekend. Before arriving I wasn’t sure which of the restaurants we’d be dining in, but I was pleased to hear it would be Shogun; a former resident of the Mailbox. Congregating in Rodizio Rico, also located on level 7, we tried a few cocktails before heading for dinner. The drinks list is massive but I wasn’t inspired by the cocktails I tried, I have to be honest. The live music was also so invasive I couldn’t hear what anyone around the table was saying, so I was quite relieved to head on over to Shogun for dinner.
There are several dining concepts available within the glass walls of Shogun. As you enter you’ll find a sushi belt as well as tables to order noodle dishes. On our visit we had a teppanyaki table reserved. This interactive form of dining isn’t for everyone, and you wouldn’t want to do it all the time, but I’ve enjoyed this style of cooking and eating before in Brum and Manchester. It’s generally quite noisy and sporadically involves having food thrown at your face in the name of entertainment, which basically explains my home life. Before the teppanyaki show kicked off colourful platters of sushi and sashimi arrived. It’s worth pointing out this is not what usually happens when you take a seat at one of the live show cooking tables, but the sushi could be a reason for me to return to dine.
The quality of the sushi we tried on the night was decent (very fresh, colourful and lots of variety) although from what we were offered I didn’t see anything particularly unusual to try. The tuna and salmon sashimi went down a storm and the rice-free platter was presented beautifully, although on the next plate of nigiri the plastic green garnish (see middle image above) was a bit off putting and unnecessary. California and makizushi rolls with soft shell crab and avocado also made for a few happy faces. The tempura prawns (again, just appeared by magic) were pleasant but I found the spring rolls a little greasy. All of these platters and sides are priced differently and you can check the menu online.
Onto the main event, and our chef arrived at the table with plenty of energy. Some table banging with various cooking utensils later and we were off; first up egg fried rice. Talking us through how he was cooking and what he was using, throughout the meal our chef made jokes and tried to get everyone around the table involved. I even cracked an egg and played golf with the remains (true story) in the name of audience participation. Tiger Woods I am not, it turns out. Teriyaki steak accompanied the rice, which we tucked￼ into as the seafood course was prepared. Lobster tails, butterflied prawns and salmon belly arrived soon after, but it was the scallops I enjoyed most. If you choose the teppanyaki option there’s various menus to pick from, including meat, seafood and fish; prices vary and it’s more economical (and fun) to have more people in your party.
We ended the evening with a visit to Haig Bar, located on Level 25 alongside the Marco Pierre White Steakhouse. From what I could gather this hasn’t changed much since it opened last summer, the drinks and cocktail remaining the same. The views are undeniably great from the floor to ceiling windows and if you like blue you’ll enjoy this whisky bar in the sky. I actually thought this bar had closed – I stand corrected.
Rumour has it there’s a bowling alley coming to The Cube before the end of the year, which promises an upmarket boozy take on the activity – keep your eyes peeled for that.
Shogun, The Cube, 196 Wharfside Street, Birmingham, B1 1RN
Disclosure: I was invited to a showcase evening at The Cube, which also included drinks at Haig Bar and Rodizio Rico. I was asked to provide an honest review of my experience – all words, images and opinions are my own.