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Purnell's, Birmingham


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Now then peeps. Had a extra day off today so I thought I would come down to Brum and check out Purnells, as you do. First off, I drove. I have been planning the trip for about 6 weeks, originally I was going to let the train take the strain, enjoy the views etc. But, as it turns out, it was cheaper for me to drive and park than to take the train. An advance day return, from Lancaster, best offer, £50!! 1 full tank of petrol in my fiesta and couple hours parking £34, and did it in two hours each way!!

I came accross Purnells when I was looking for somewhere to take my Gran out when I saw her a couple of weeks ago. In the end went to Mallory Court (was ok), but really wanted to check this place out.

Its quite a nice place inside, I thought it might be a bit echoey looking at the website, but was nice and warm inside. gallery_58357_5844_27603.jpg

Its smart, modern without being trendy, if you get what I mean. I liked it.

I went ALC, as I thought I might get the odd amuse/pre dessert thrown in. I got a amuse of Potato veloute with rosemary oil. Nice! To start I had Poached egg yolk - smoked haddock milk foam - cornflakes - curry oil.

I found it a bit sickly, could just be me. Was tasty though.

gallery_58357_5844_122471.jpg

Then had Duck - liquorice - tamarind - rocket - black rice which was most plesant. The duck was done medium rare, spot on. No photo as I felt a geek sneaking photos of my food.

And to finish had Blackberry parfait - bay leaf custard - apple sorbet - glazed apples. Quite refreshing, the bay leaf custard worked well, it was quite thick, more of a paste.

gallery_58357_5844_186041.jpg

In the end only got the amuse, so prob could have gone with the set lunch, but I thought what the hell. 3 Courses plus a coke and cranberry juice (I was driving remember!! Doh) £48. I was the only one there to start with, I thought 'here we go', a batallion of staff running round after me. But it filled up towards the end. They had music on too, which was great. It breaks up the silence. I hate eating in hushed reverie. Def recommend it. But go for set lunch as its 3 courses £18.95, i'll do that next time. set lunch was 2/2/2 ALC 4/4/4 choices. Service was good, friendly french maitre'd. Crap hand wash in loo. Olives for canapes, i hate olives. It would be good to know what others think?? Ummm, thats all!

Oliver

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I'm very keen to go here, after seeing it on great british menu. I knew of Jessicas previously, i believe Purnell worked there before? but i will certainly give this a go. Good price for set lunch too.

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Embrace that inner geek!

I spent this evening checking out the photo's of food now being served in Parisian restaurants.

“Do you not find that bacon, sausage, egg, chips, black pudding, beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, fried bread and a cup of tea; is a meal in itself really?” Hovis Presley.

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Had dinner a couple of years ago at Jessica's,it held 2 rosettes and a star, 4 of us ate all chefs one being an ex-employee so got looked after from the off! He did us a "menu" Most dishes sent out were solid and some, we were guinea pigs for.He came out after to speak to us and see what we thought really nice guy .Very focussed and full of energy and enthusiasm for what he was doing, and that was at a restaurant that he didn't own.Would love to give purnells a go and before it gets rammed from the current tv series.Ihope he does well but am unsure how he will do against Sat...?

Never trust a skinny Chef

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see original great british menu thread regarding cooking for the queen and someones inside information  :biggrin:

Am sure I can find out just need to ask a few people myself,thought you were gonna spill the beans nevermind.

Never trust a skinny Chef

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  • 6 months later...

I hope to be passing through Birmingham next week and hope to have time to grab lunch at Purnell's.

Anyone got any recommendations on how to get the most out of it?

tasting menu, a la Carte or anything else?

.........much appreciated.

“Do you not find that bacon, sausage, egg, chips, black pudding, beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, fried bread and a cup of tea; is a meal in itself really?” Hovis Presley.

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Thanks for bringing this thread back Adey. I couldn't be arsed to start a new one!

Purnells is fantastic and you should definitely not hesitate to visit next week. I've never been to lunch but judging by the 'a la carte' dinners i have there it should be a steal at £20 a pop for 3 courses. Last time we went was just last week, here are some pics to whet your appetite (apologies for the fuzzy photos - they stuck us in the darkest corner):

Glyn's signature Cheese & Pineapple Starter (my wife always has this)

gallery_52657_6242_109216.jpg

Chicken liver parfait, cured duck and textures of beetroot (the sorbet element was stunning):

gallery_52657_6242_153625.jpg

Pork fillet, mushy peas and nuggets:

gallery_52657_6242_79711.jpg

Monkfish rolled in cep and ox cheek:

gallery_52657_6242_72070.jpg

And, because we love the desserts here, we had the first three on the menu!

gallery_52657_6242_355843.jpg

I think my starter was the best dish of the lot. The chicken liver parfait was truly perfect, along with the rich duck and refreshingly sweet beetroot it was a sensation. Most disappointing was my main, Monkfish was a little over and the ox-cheek not deep enough and the potato crisp soggy (it felt like it been hanging around too long).

So if you could order 'a la carte' at lunch i would highly recommend my starter.

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Cheers fella that looks glorious, am going to have to pack my William Shatner branded corsett.

“Do you not find that bacon, sausage, egg, chips, black pudding, beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, fried bread and a cup of tea; is a meal in itself really?” Hovis Presley.

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  • 5 months later...

Well who can resist a midweek treat.Not me of course.

So Tuesday afternoon , decided on a drive to Brum the following day for lunch.

As it was Birmingham was bathed in sunshine, and to make the journey even more pleasant,I was able to park the Batmobile virtually outside Purnells.

This was a real pleasure,because that is part of my love-hate thing with big cities especially London.

Great stuff to do but driving can be an absolute nightmare.And parking even worse.

Well I want to try the tasting menu,but will save it for now as they are close to changing the menus,and the game season has now finished,so will wait a while.

The lure of the excellent value lunch menu at £20 for 3 courses was too much to resist.

You can of course take 2 for £17 but go for the 3 as the desserts are F A B.

Ham hock cooked in hay-Maryland

Veloute of butternut squash-feta-pine nuts-coriander seed oil.

Smoked Haddock-egg yolk-curry oil-Salsify Aubergine puree'

Glazed Pork belly-prune and Earl Grey Puree-Seaweed-white cabbage-lentils.

Caramelised lemon tart-Lychee and basil sorbet-Blackberries.

Dark chocolate truffle-pumpkin ice cream-Orange.

We both had the Ham hock,quite simply because my wife has been masterful in the kitchen with her rendition of Artichoke veloute,so we both wanted a change.

The Ham was served cold with pieces of banana and some crushed sweetcorn and small droplets of what turned out to be a rocket and wasabi puree.

We did ask the waiter what it was, he went to the kitchen and returned asking "us" what we though it was.We thought it was watercress as there was no fiery hint to it.

I assume this little tease was to test our palate's.

I fancied the Pork but conceded and chose the Haddock instead as I wanted to taste both dishes.

The Haddock is one of Glyn's signiture dishes minus the cornflakes this time.

It went down well.But have to admit I had my eye on the Pork.

I kept looking at the Pork and rather belatedly I was offered a couple of tastes.

Pork with Prunes is just great, the little side dish of puy lentils with veg dice was a welcome addition.

I had the Lemon tart which was just terrific, pretty as a picture and I wolfed it down.

The Chocolate truffle looked and tasted the part and both desserts were up there with anything else we have had this year.

We had coffee and petit fours but I was deep in conversation with one of the staff about foodie things it was cold before I could drink it.

Service as always was slick under the watchful eye of Jean-Benoit Burloux,described as a man of " ludicrous beauty" by our very own Jay Rayner.

Just before we left Glyn Purnell slipped out of the door in his shorts, perhaps on the way to the gym for a workout, or to engage in his new love, which is boxing.

I did not see him sadly, or I would have asked to see the tattoo on his leg of a Michelin man that he had done to celebrate winning his first star at Jessica's.

Who knows he may have two?

Well there is always next time!

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Went there last Saturday and had the 7 course tasting menu, whatever it's called, with the wine flight. Most of the food has been discussed here so I'm not going to repeat, other than to say that is excellent, well worth the visit, but the wine flight at £38 is a revelation. Not only were the wines good in themselves but matched the food perfectly, I've never seen it done as well, and at the price a bit of a steal. 70ml pours which means you get enough to enjoy with the food but not so much that you're slurring through the last courses. Service was good, if a little patchy, especially trying to pay the bill, but always friendly and competent.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just had news via Purnells newsletter of their new menus.

Had a few of these already so can testify as to the quality.

The five and seven courses are virtually similar in price to Sat Bains, they are big mates and speak regularly, after service mainly.

Will be going again quite soon.

Watch this space!

http://clownfish.corporatemailer.co.uk/rea...3de410125bbc84c

Edited by david goodfellow (log)

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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  • 2 weeks later...

Had some business down the M5 last Thursday which was a bit unplanned and did not think I had any chance of a lunch visit to Purnell's.

Well you guessed it, we finished a bit earlier than anticipated and a quick phone call and fingers crossed managed to get the last table for two.

I was under a bit of time pressure due to a fifty mile dash up the M6 after lunch to visit the mother in law who had a nasty fall resulting in a broken shoulder and a compound fracture of the wrist!

On arrival we could see how busy it was and I asked if it were possible if we could have a table in the main room, rather than the small overspill room.

Thankfully my request was granted.

All of the tables for two look into the room, and this is my preferred option.

We had a couple of Campari and Sodas to sort out the taste buds then

Ham hock & Chicken terrine-apple-Celeriac-smoked paprika honeycomb

Poached egg yolk-potato& leek salad-Vinaigrette of green beans and chive.

Smoked haddock-avocado puree-Quinoa-White asparagus cooked in orange,Baby fennel.

Slow cooked Ox cheeks-vanilla dipped Potato-Jerusalem artichoke-glazed Pear -English asparagus.

Lemon delice-white chocolate-lychee and basil sorbet-crystallized basil

Rhubarb Pavlova-rhubarb sorbet

Mrs G had the terrine and I had a taste and we both liked it,I wished now that I could remember the honeycomb, but sadly not,it must be an age thing.

I seem to be eating a lot of eggs and smoked haddock of late, but opted for the egg starter, and we both had the Ox cheeks because they were sort of irresistible.

The eggy starter and the terrine were a decent prelude to the aforementioned cheeks, which we were very much looking forward to.

Now I really, really, wish that I could cook like this, to get so much flavour packed into the dish, to the layman, is something to wonder at.

We liked the potato and pear element, and I'm a big fan of jerusalem artichoke.

The asparagus gave it some colour and a touch of extra flavour.

This is a very rich portion of meat and was incredibley more-ish however I felt it needed a little bit more potato to break the flavour up a bit, don't get me wrong its a fantastic dish its just perhaps too much of a good thing, but i could eat it again and again.

Desserts as always were top notch, we tried them both, me taking the Rhubarb which was enjoyable, we both liked the Lemon Delice.

Now as I sat there, mind drifting, in a euphoric sort of state, I pondered on the many twenties of pounds that I've spent with no joy attached, but here I am with good company,great service,excellent food, and metres away from one of the best chefs in the country who is ALWAYS in the kitchen when his customers are in the dining room.

Now we all know its more than twenty quid when you add a dining companion or a drink or two, but you could still walk in off the street(if you could get a table) and

eat top quality food for twenty pound, thats got to be a bargain.

If I were down to my last twenty I know where I would spend it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :biggrin:

2 x 3 course lunches £40

2 Campari & soda £11

2 glass's wine £11.50

service charge £7.81

Total £70.31

Jug of severn trent water foc.

Edited by david goodfellow (log)

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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Bloody hell thats cheap. Great for the punters but seems a wee desperate on Dennis part. Any idea what trades like at mo? Haven't been for ages. Used to go an awful lot at one point before they dumbed it down. Have you been at all recently? :wink:

Edited by food1 (log)
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Bloody hell thats cheap. Great for the punters but seems a wee desperate on Dennis part. Any idea what trades like at mo? Haven't been for ages. Used to go an awful lot at one point before they dumbed it down. Have you been at all recently?

trade's been good last i heard , the offer has worked in getting punters through the door, many of my leeds based colleagues go regularly and love it. i need to get back myself soon. very consistent restaurant, always delivers.

Edited by Gary Marshall (log)

you don't win friends with salad

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