Thursday, 12 February 2009

The Food of Love

MUCH as I love the Second City, when it comes to romance, Birmingham is no Paris.
There's no Eiffel Tower, Champs Elysees or River Seine in which to stroll along, hand in hand.
Only a Rotunda, Broad Street and a murky canal. Hardly panoramas to inspire passion.
But if, like me, you think that food (not music) is the food of love, then Brum has plenty of cosy spots to show you care this Valentine's Day.
If money is no object then you could splash the cash at one of the city's fine dining establishments; Purnells in Cornwall Street, Edmunds in Brindley Place or Simpsons in Edgbaston.
I doubt you'll be disappointed by the quality of food and the sophisticated ambiance, although getting a reservation so close to February 14 could prove tricky.
Another dead cert for good grub is Filini at the Radisson, which serves exquisite Italian food using the freshest ingredients, although prices are steep.
City hotels also boasting quality restaurants are Malmaison and Hotel Du Vin, although a quick look at their websites show they are serving the same menu (they share a parent company). Both set menus are £45 per person, but includes a glass of rose wine.
If your relationship is long in the tooth enough to withstand a curry then you can't go wrong at Lasan in the Jewellery Quarter, or for lighter Thai food why not opt for elegant cuisine at Thai Edge in Oozells Square?
But little money need not stand in the way of a good time and if you are looking to cuddle up on the cheap I recommend a meal at the cavernous Bacchus Bar in the Burlington Arcade. It's cosy with plenty of comfy sofas to sink into while tucking into some tasty pub food.
As for me, my Valentine's Day is in the hands of the boy... and whether it be baked beans by candlelight or fine dining fillet steak, as long as there's food involved I'll be a happy bunny!
Where is your favourite romantic dining spot? Let me know...

13 comments:

Mrs Woffington said...

Hi Emily, I think I'm pretty romantic, and also dedicated to food, but eating out on Valentine's is such a weird experience - lots of couples staring glassily over the table at each other, and the food and service can often be poor (unless you've splashed out at Purnell's). This year I've opted to cook a special meal for my partner at home, and I've got to say, I'm really looking forward to it!

Emily said...

I agree Mrs W. I think dining out on the day is very odd (overpriced menus and tables pushed too closely together, people full of high expectation) and would usually chose to celebrate it on a different day; it just so happens that this year it falls on a Saturday so I thought I'd make a few suggestions.
Your home meal cooked meal sounds like a better idea. What's on your menu? Is it a surprise? I am thinking of cooking a special meal on Monday night as it's our anniversary but am troubling over what to cook....

Mrs Woffington said...

I am also troubling over what to cook; boringly we're trying to eat a diet low in salt and saturated fat. I've got a brilliant low-fat pear dessert from last year's BBC Good Food mag which uses cocoa powder as the chocolatey element. I'm struggling with the main though - looking for something speical yet not too fatty and perhaps suited to slow cooking(he does a wicked low-fat curry, so maybe something Thai). As for restaurants, Turners would have been ideal for romance, though I suspect there'll be no chance of a table now!

Mrs Woffington said...

PS the dessert is here: http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/5132/chocolate-pear-crisp

Emily said...

Thanks Mrs W. Like you, we try to eat a low fat/low salt diet. It's hard to be a foodie, and watch the waistline. I feel like I have been cruelly inflicted with a food and figure obsession in equal measures, and the two don't go.
That recipe looks superb. I do love pears served that way. I may try that one out.
Thanks
Emily

Nate-n-Annie said...

Going out on V-Day is a crap shoot. Long lines, harried service, overpriced food. I'll stay home and grill a ribeye.

Thanks for adding us as a friend on Foodbuzz. We welcome you to come visit our site!

Emily said...

Thanks for reading. Funny you should mention a rib eye. I went to the supermarket last night and stocked up with steak, asparagus, rocket, as well as some sweet treats for dessert!
Enjoy your day.
Emily

Mrs Woffington said...

Emily, how did your Valentine's go? I got all my recipes from BBC Good Food in the end: a starter of a smoked salmon with prawns, horseradish cream and lime viniagrette, main of easy chicken tagine and dessert of chocolate pear crisp. The starter and dessert were brilliant, but the main was a bit dull, though tasty enough.

Emily said...

Hi Mrs W!
Your meal sounds sensational. Your partner is very lucky! Thank you for asking about my evening. Our meal was also lovely, but a lot simpler than yours. My theme was 'Love in the 1970s' so made king prawn cocktail to start, followed by steak with asparagus, and a rocket and Parmesan salad. We finished with mango fool, then coffee and biscotti. Definitely better than an over-priced meal out!

Mrs Woffington said...

Wow, that sounds great! :)

Emily said...

Thanks. Not as technically good as your menu. More assembly cooking really! And if I am honest, I have one glass of wine and felt too tipsy to cook even that food properly :)

Mrs Woffington said...

Yes, I know what you mean about the wine (it was G&T with me!) Though I promise you, I'm no skilled cook. The salad was very, very easy, esp. as I prepared the horerasish cream and the viniagrette while sober in the morning and then assembled it two seconds after I'd stuck the main on to cook. Recipe is below... I promise you, the flavours really work!

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/9081/smoked-salmon-with-prawns-horseradish-cream-and-li

Emily said...

Thanks for the tip Mrs W. Looks straightforward enough. I love the BBC Good Food website. It's always my first port of call for online recipe ideas! In fact, I often go there and neglect the piles of books I have in my flat!