One of the longstanding ‘must try’ restaurants I’ve been meaning to dine in is Tom’s Kitchen, and earlier this month I finally got to try Tom’s tucker.
Like most food bloggers I have an increasingly long list of restaurants, cafes and bars I’d like to visit. My list has never had less than 20 places (in Birmingham alone) on it at one time because for every one I manage to try I find a new one to add.
Situated next to Harvey Nichols (and a very large Christmas tree currently) the open plan restaurant was getting busy by the time we arrived at 6pm for an early dinner. The plush leather seating and low warm lighting gives the place an upmarket yet cosy feel. It’s chic and smart; the immaculately dressed staff are no exception.
The food and drink
A delicious Trapiche Malbec (£12 for a large glass) kick started our meal before the Meat and Fish Sharing Board (£22) arrived. A bountiful platter of toasted hunks of bread, slices of salami and Parma ham, mini crab cakes, cured salmon, duck rillette and parfait – plus some pickles for good measure – adorned our table to much ooh and ahhing.
This is a very generous sharing platter, and could easily serve 3 rather than 2 as a starter. The lightly fried soft crab patties proved a big hit, as did the parfait that was sublime slathered over the warm bread. This is excellent value for the quality of ingredients and the sheer quantity delivered; I’d would order this again as a main for hearty lunch.
Satisfied from the lofty starter, I was almost relieved to see a more reserved main arrive at the table. My Smoked Cornish Haddock (£22) looked vibrant and rustic, and packed a beautifully delicate wood-smoked flavour. Soft and flakey – falling apart with the mere touch of a fork – the fish sat proudly upon a lightly curried chowder.
Although very tasty – the shiitake mushrooms and raisins have the dish different layers of flavour – I found a few of the small sweet potato cubes within the sunshine sauce a little undercooked for my liking, but I enjoyed nonetheless. On the advice of a friend (and our server) I also ordered some Truffle and Parmesan Chips (£5) with my main as a side dish; sexy little chunks of joy they are.
Ian’s gorgeous-looking Cumbrian Rump Steak (£26) came with a whipped béarnaise butter, triple cooked chips and a topping of crispy shallots. It was on the rarer side of medium-rare, it has to be said, but he enjoyed it as it came and commented on the quality of the beef and flavour added from the butter. He let me have a little nibble and I immediately got food envy, so I’d take that as a good sign.
Sadly, we had no room for dessert, but left very full and happy. Having heard so many good reports from foodies and friends alike I was expecting great things – I didn’t leave disappointed. Delicious food, excellent service and a very pleasant place to spend a Friday evening. Don’t forget there’s also a mini deli version of Tom’s Kitchen on the first floor; it serves champagne, light bites and winter warmers in record time.
Have you tried this place? Do you have any favourite menu items? Let me know in the comments.
Tom’s Kitchen, The Mailbox, Wharfside Streer, Birmingham, B1 1RE
Disclosure: I was invited to dine by the venue and the food was complementary for review purposes. All words, opinions and positivity based on fact are mine