Back to Scott’s of Harborne

With so many excellent food options in Birmingham, I seem to be forever trapped in an endless list as long my arm of places I want to try, and an equally long list of places I want to go back too. If I make it back to a place within a month of visiting, it’s generally a sign it’s something special. You may remember I was very impressed with the Tapas offering at Scott’s of Harborne, so on my birthday weekend, I knew I wanted to go back and try the breakfast menu.

Quarter Horse Coffee

coffee

Scott’s uses Quarter Horse Coffee, and has a good range of syrups and milk alternatives. I ordered a latte, which was smooth and tasty, with all that Quarter Horse loveliness. Dave’s Hot Chocolate was enormous, loaded with marshmallows, which vanished quickly.

Iced Latte

I also had an Iced Caramel Latte, perfect for the warm weather and served with a pretty paper straw. No plastic here!

Pancakes

birthday breakfast

I’m normally not one for super sweet breakfast items, but I’ll eat anything smothered in salted caramel, so I decided to try the Pancakes with Apple Sauce and Salted Caramel. It’s a very generous portion, and the pancakes were perfectly fluffy. Salted caramel was rich and delicious, but held back from turning sickly by the pairing of a slightly sharp apple sauce.

Panini

Dave hit the lunch menu and ordered a Ham and Mozarella Panini. It was packed full of good quality, thick cut ham, oozy cheese and red onion.

I didn’t manage to get a snap before it was inhaled, but the Breakfast Burrito looked gorgeous, and the little nibble I was offered made me think it cleverly uses some of the tapas dishes (definitely the bravas) for the filling, which is a very smart idea, and means you’re definitely in for deliciousness.

I’m pleased to find the breakfast menu is just as high quality as the tapas offering, and means I’ll be a regular at Scott’s for sure.

We paid for breakfast in full (but Scott very kindly gifted me a slice of cake as a birthday present), but obviously the owner is a friend and knows I’m a blogger. All words, images and opinions are my own. 

Anderson’s Bar and Grill, Birmingham

Birthday weekends are for eating too much, if you ask me, so with two birthdays to celebrate last weekend (mine, and my fiance’s best friend), we decided to head to Anderson’s Bar & Grill to eat lots of delicious steak.

the restaurant

Anderson’s is tucked away under St Paul’s Square, in eighteenth century cellars. With vaulted ceilings, exposed brick and well spaced out tables, Anderson’s feels modern, welcoming and a little bit special. I always get distracted by the fridge full of huge hunks of beef that you pass on the way in. It’s nice to see the meat shown off, with clear pride in their ingredients.

Several tables are tucked away into alcoves, with options for intimate date night, and for larger groups, so you can make as much racket as you like without disturbing your fellow diners.  It’s clearly a popular spot for celebrating too; I lost count of the number of birthday candles I saw emerging from the kitchen, and the couple behind us were celebrating an anniversary.

Espresso Martini

wine and cocktails

The boys weren’t drinking (one for driving and one for hangover reasons), so I took on the task of investigating the wine list alone. A glass of Elementos Shiraz Malbec (£4.85) was full of juicy fruit flavours, and was the perfect friend for my steak.

I also couldn’t resist an Espresso Martini with dessert. The first Espresso Martini I ever tried was actually at Anderson’s, and basically, there’s a reason it started off my obsession. It’s easily one of the best in the city; plenty of actual coffee flavour with gentle background sweetness.

Steak, steak and more steak

We kicked off with Baked Rustic Breads with Roast Garlic (£2.95) and Marinated Whole Green and Black Olives (£3.50) to share while we waited for starters. The bread was still warm when it hit the table, and the roast garlic was perfection. Deep and sweet and so soft you could spread it on the bread. Given the choice, I’d have swapped the garlic olive oil for oil and balsamic, but then it’s a favourite of mine, and it was a bit garlic overload when paired with the roast garlic. The olives were plump and salty, and very tasty.

Sashimi Tuna

To start, I opted for Seared Sashimi Tuna (£7.95) with black sesame, wasabi mayonnaise, pickled cucumber, pickled ginger and soy dressing. Fat slices of tuna were full of rich flavour, and the fish was clearly beautiful quality. The zingy pickled cucumber was an excellent accompaniment, and the whole thing made for a great, light start before the red meat fest to follow.

Pork Belly

Dave went for Slow Roast Belly of Pork (£6.95) with a sticky chilli and honey glaze and toasted sesame. The pork had a good thick layer of crackling, with the meat below left full of moisture. The honey glaze was delicious, with a subtle chilli kick to cut through the sweetness.

Surf and Turf

For mains, I went for Anderson’s Surf and Turf (£20.95 with a 6oz steak, £25.95 with 8oz), which is made up of a sirloin steak, roast Monkfish wrapped in pancetta and poached scallop. The monkfish was some of the best I’ve ever eaten. The added pancetta had leaked salty, meaty deliciousness into the robust fish. The scallop was tender as can be, and the steak was cooked to perfection. I like it medium rare, and this was pink in the centre without a hint of leaked juice.

Shorthorn Fillet

Anderson's Bar & Grill

Dave tried the 10oz Shorthorn Fillet on the Bone (£22.95), which was a gorgeous slab of meat. Again, it was cooked to a perfect medium rare, and was juicy and tasty. The three of us shared a dish of ChipsPotatoes of the Day, and Green Beans. I skipped most of the potato, but the chip I nibbled was fluffy in the centre and crisp outside, and the beans had hung onto plenty of crunch, and were so drowned in garlic butter even our vegetable-dodging friend enjoyed them.

White Chocolate Cheesecake

I hadn’t planned on ordering dessert, but the nice people at Anderson’s had obviously been told we were celebrating, as a mystery dessert appeared with a birthday greeting in chocolate. I’m pretty sure it was their White Chocolate Cheesecake (£6.95), which is a deconstructed cheesecake topped with pistachio. It was very tasty, but rich, and I only managed about half of it, alongside the dessert cocktail I had actually ordered.

attentive service

Anderson’s staff know their stuff. Everybody we dealt with was friendly, and the touch of the birthday dessert was a lovely surprise. If anything, and it’s an odd complaint, we found them a touch over attentive. We were often checked on by multiple staff during a single course, and when the table was cleared, we kept losing things we weren’t actually done with. Half a dish of olives vanished with our empty starter plates (annoying when you’ve paid for them), and the boys both lost their water glasses before dessert arrived as mains were cleared away.

I always enjoy Anderson’s and for occasion dining like a birthday, it’s a great treat without being too expensive. I even converted the two northerners to it.

We paid in full for our meals, and didn’t tell them I was a blogger. All prices correct at time of writing. All words, opinions and images are my own. 

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Three Church Road, Birmingham

If somebody suggested you go for dinner in a retirement village, you’d probably think they were a bit peculiar and make a mental note not to ask them for recommendations anymore. However, in Edgbaston, you really should go for dinner in a retirement village.

Three Church Road

Audley St George’s Place is no ordinary retirement village of course. Instead, it’s made up of luxury retirement apartments with every possible convenience on site, including a pool, a gym, and a restaurant. The restaurant, Three Church Road, is open to the general public as well as Audley’s owners, and is a the best kind of hidden gem.

unexpected luxury

When we went to try Three Church Road, I didn’t really know what to expect. I found a luxe, classic dining space, with a series of gorgeous rooms, from the bright restaurant to the cosy bar, or stunning private dining room.

Three Church Road

Three Church Road bar

Each space was beautiful, and I was surprised by how gorgeous the whole place was, with so much colour. You can enjoy a relaxed dinner in the restaurant, or a more laid back meal in the bistro, or go for afternoon tea, drinks, or coffee and cake in the bar.

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there’s always time for a cocktail

There’s an extensive wine list, but it was the cocktails that caught my eye. Dave was driving so stuck to Ginger Ale, so I nobly took on the task of testing them alone.

Rhubarb Negroni

I started with a Rhubarb Negroni, which was a very pleasant twist on a classic. It was well-made, strong and with plenty of citrus, as well as a hint of underlying sharpness from the rhubarb. Perfection.

Espresso Martini

An Espresso Martini was just as good, with rich, coffee flavour and a good head of foam.

perfect for spring

Pigeon Kiev

The menu is full of Spring classics, and I really struggled to choose as it all sounded delicious. To start, I chose Pigeon Kiev (£9.50), in a hazelnut crumb, with asparagus, a pancetta risotto and a raspberry vinegar glaze. The dish looked so pretty on the plate, and the risotto was beautiful. It was creamy and with plenty of pancetta hidden throughout. The pigeon was a smidge dry, but as a meat it often is, but it had plenty of flavour and the crumb was crisp and delicious.

Fishcake

Dave had the Salmon, Lemon and Spring Onion Fishcake (£7), with rocket salad and tarrogan mayonnaise. The presentation was very pretty (I’ll even forgive the slate). The inside was light and fluffy, with plenty of fish. The dish was lifted nicely by the tarragon mayonnaise.

Sea Bass

I’ve been making an effort to eat more fish lately, so ordered Pan Fried Sea Bass (£13.95), which came with jersey royals, green beans and a mussel veloute. The veloute had plenty of juicy mussels scattered through it, and the beans had lots of fresh crunch. The fish was cooked perfectly, flaking at the touch a fork, but maintaining a good crispy skin.

Roasted Lamb Rump

Dave ordered Roasted Lamb Rump (£15.95), with dauphinoise potatoes, spring greens, carrot puree and a mint jus. This made for a colourful, springy dish, with the lamb perfectly pink. The meat fell apart, and was well paired with the jus. Again, the veg was fresh and crisp, while the potatoes were soft inside and crisp on top.

Sticky Toffee Pudding

Dave’s Sticky Toffee Pudding (£5.50) with rum and raisin ice cream and poached peach was pretty as a picture. The pudding was rich, with good boozy ice cream and plenty of toffee sauce. The peach was soft without turning to mush, and was enjoyed by Dave who usually claims not to like poached fruit.

Artisan Cheese Selection

I wasn’t feeling the sweet stuff and instead opted for an Artisan Cheese Selection (£6.75 for three pieces), and chose Hereford Hopper Cheddar, le Maubert Petit Brie and a Rosart Goat’s Cheese. The cheese is accompanied by crackers, grapes and chutney. The cheese was generous (I think the 5 piece board would be ideal to share between two), and good quality. An excellent alternative to dessert.

impeccable service

Restaurant Manager Lynn took excellent care of us. She was attentive without hovering and was very keen to show off her fabulous work place. She was happy to tell us all about the history of the building, the retirement complex and the restaurant, and even took us for a sneaky tour around the building.

Watching her and her staff with other tables, high standards are the norm here. Every table was looked after well and great pride is obviously taken in delivering the very best in food, service and surroundings.

The whole place felt superbly relaxing, and we’re already planning our return visit.

I was a guest of Three Church Road. Our food and drinks were complementary for the purpose of honest review. All words, images and opinions are my own. All prices correct at the time of writing. 

Midlands Food Drink & Hospitality Awards

Click here to vote for me for Best Food/Drink Blogger. Scroll to category 17. It takes thirty seconds and means I’ll love you always.