Hello January

January is already setting the bar high for 2020, with a host of local chefs from Glynn Purnell to Stu Deeley creating special dinners and events for us to enjoy this month.

January 2020

All the details are over on the Events page.

Table Talk – Friday 22nd June

Foodies Festival.jpg

This weekend the UK’s largest food festival takes over Birmingham’s Cannon Hill Park. Foodies Festival has Michelin starred chefs Glynn Purnell and Brad Carter  demonstrating their culinary flair on stage, whilst there will be plenty of artisan producers, street food stalls, bars and master classes to enjoy.  Open today from noon – 9pm, Saturday 11am – 9pm and Sunday 11am – 6pm. Entrance costs are free for children under 12, £5 for teenagers and a range of different adult tickets from  £12.

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The next evening event at Denstone Hall Farm Shop  appealing titled ‘Summer Fresh Feasting’ is on Friday 6th July. Here you can choose local and seasonal dishes, including Staffordshire Moorlands lamb and Denstone Hall 28 day aged sirloin steak, and dine overlooking the beautiful River Churnet.

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The Old Bramshall Inn, on the outskirts of Uttoxeter is welcoming a new landlord. You might recognise his face, as it is the actor Neil Morrissey. This is the second Staffordshire pub  for Neil who already runs The Plume of Feathers in Barlaston. The Old Bramshall Inn  is currently undergoing a refurbishment and will reopen on Thursday 28th June with a new separate dining room, bar and lounge area and pub garden

Purnell’s golden ticket draw

Glynn Purnell Birmingham Mail.jpg

How would you celebrate your tenth anniversary? Michelin star chef Glynn Purnell is throwing a party for 30 very special guests to celebrate a decade of his restaurant opening in Birmingham city centre and you could be one of them!

Glynn is holding a golden ticket prize draw to select 30 lucky diners, who will enjoy a 10 course-dinner and champagne reception at Purnell’s on Friday 7 July as their prize.

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Glynn says: “When I first opened Purnell’s back in 2007, I had no idea where we would be today thanks to our customers and suppliers who are all a fantastic support to us. The team I have built is amazing and we have been working hard to create a 10-course menu for our lucky anniversary night guests, that will celebrate some Purnell favourites and rework some of our original dishes.”

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Glynn has received more than 1,000 entries already! To be in with a chance of winning a pair of tickets for the champagne reception and 10-course meal, all you have to do is send a SAE to :

Mr Purnell’s Golden Ticket Prize Draw
Purnell’s Restaurant
55 Cornwall Street
Birmingham B3 2DH.

The closing date is Thursday 15 June at 5pm good luck!

Hunger for a taste of Harvey Nichols?

Harvey Nichols shopping bag

The luxurious new Harvey Nichols store in the Mailbox is due to open in July and at its heart will be The Harvey Nichols Restaurant curated by Glynn Purnell.

Glynn Purnell at Harvey Nichols

Glynn has worked closely with the store to develop a stylish all-day dining menu, mentor the restaurant’s new Head Chef and hospitality team, recruit local suppliers and source the specialist ingredients used in each dish.

To give you a taste of the luxurious new shopping haven, Harvey Nichols has teamed up with Flybe Flight Time and Gastro Card to offer one lucky winner a £250 shopping spree instore, dinner for two (up to the value of £100) in its new restaurant as well as a signed copy of Glynn Purnell’s bestselling book Cracking Yolks and Pigs Tales.

So what are you waiting for?! For the chance to win this fabulous prize and enter, please read T&Cs here Competition closes 30 June.

Birmingham chefs take centre stage

There are some familiar faces and a cross section of city venues taking part in the Foodies Festival this weekend.

Foodies Festival Chefs Theatre


To see the guys in action, here is the timetable for the Chefs Theatre.

Friday 15th May

12.00 Dhruv Baker – MasterChef Winner 2010

13.00 Nathan Eades – St Andrews Town Hotel

14.00 Ryan Swift – The Edgbaston

15.00 Robert Grzesik – The Warehouse Cafe

16.00 Nathan Eades – St Andrews Town Hotel

17.00 William Noblett – Ju Ju’s Cafe

Saturday 16th May

12.00 Dhruv Baker – MasterChef Winner 2010

13.00 Nathan Eades – St Andrews Town Hotel

14.00 Glynn Purnell – Purnells

15.00 James Wong – Chung Ying

16.00 Jackie Kearney – The Hungry Gecko

17.00 Nick Turner – Hotel De Vin

Sunday 17th May

12.00 Katy B – ‘Little Miss Meat Free’ Great Vegan Bake Off Winner 2014

13.00 Rachel Green – Top TV Chef

14.00 Aktar Islam – Lasan Group

15.00 Dhruv Baker – MasterChef Winner 2010

16.00 Matt Cheal – Simpsons

Entry to the Chefs Theatre is included in the ticket price. Tickets are released at the festival on the day and are available on a first come, first served basis and entry is limited – register for free entry at the Registration Point opposite the main entrance.

(Photo credits: Birmingham Mail and Birmingham Living)

Great British Food Farm Produce Awards 2015

Great British Food Farm Produce Awards


You might not have heard of the Great British Food magazine’s Farm Produce Awards as they are just a year old. Launched  to celebrate the country’s finest home-grown ingredients, as well as the hardworking folk who produce it, this year’s competition is now open.

By voting for your favourite producers, food sellers and services you’ll automatically be entered into a prize draw to win 1 of 10 top-of-the-range Stellar pans worth £110 each. To vote, just click this link

There are six categories that readers can vote for –

  • Best British Restaurant
  • Best Independent Retailer
  • Best British Food Brand
  • Best Online Retailer
  • Best Food Personality
  • Best Cookbook

Malt Kiln Farm Shop in Coventry is nominated for Best Independent Food Retailer and Adams Restaurant in Birmingham is nominated for Best British Restaurant.  I’ve voted for both of them and added Cracking Yolks and Pig Tales by Glynn Purnell as my favourite cookbook.

Voting is open until 7th June and the winners will be announced in the September issue of Great British Food magazine .

Weekend food telly

Over the weekend you can play spot the local food hero on Channel 4.

weekend tv

The yummie Brummie Glynn Purnell will be appearing on Weekend Kitchen on Saturday as the programme returns for a second series.

On Sunday street food pioneer Richard Johnson will be talking to Leamington Spa’s very own Fresh Rootz on Sunday Brunch.

Purnell’s Brummie Tapas

Inbetween his appearance at the Colmore Business District Food Festival and book signing for Cracking Yolks, Yummie Brummie Glynn Purnell has found the time to create a new Brummie Tapas menu.


For £45 per person you can nibble on plates including

Spiced potato and lime croquettes – tacos – duck egg mayonnaise

Creamed onion explosion – tomato “sharp”

Beetroot mousse – escabeche of vegetables – horseradish crumble

Market fish – chicken glaze – chicken skin – “peas”

Neck of lamb – capers – burnt lettuce – basil emulsion

Strawberries – violet – liquorice

Mint choc chip.

July’s hottest food and drink events

July started with the launch of Leamington Wine Company’s Gin Club, boubon tasting at Hotel du Vin and a stars and stripes dinner at The Star and Garter. Yeeha to American Independence Day! The rest of this month’s food and drink events are just as good.

July events1

This week you could be onstage at The Rep for a Blanch & Shock dinner as part of BE Festival, tucking into gin cocktails and pastries at Loki’s new Gin Brunch, or waving the flag for French Resistance Week at The Church.

July Events2

Next week Glynn Purnell will be signing copies of his book at Harvey Nichols, the Colmore Business District food festival returns and we say hello to a new event  – the Stratford Home and Garden Show at Alscot House.

July events3

July goes out with a bang at the Birmingham Beer Bash, vintage night at Le Truc and a Connolly’s Wine Dinner at Carters of Moseley.  AMV Curiosities takes over The Electric’s Food and Film Club and Clarke and Lee pop-up in the refurbished back bar at the Hare and Hounds.

All the details are on the Events page.

Wherever you go this month I hope that you have a great time discovering or revisiting your favourite chefs, venues and producers in the Midlands.

If there any food and drink events that you think I should add to the blog, please drop me a line at midlandsgourmetgirl@gmail.com.

Cracking Fathers Day gifts

If you’re looking for a ‘cracking’ Fathers Day present, then I don’t think that you can go wrong with Glynn Purnell’s eggcellent first book Cracking Yolks and Pig Tales.


Revealing the recipes of 100 much loved dishes including ‘The Emotions of Cheese and Pineapple’ and ‘Haddock, Eggs and Cornflakes’ the book also gives readers an insight into Glynn’s cooking history. With no holds barred, his humour and passion for food and cooking fly off the pages. £19.99 from all good bookshops, including Waterstones in Birmingham.

Here are two other ideas for Fathers Day gifts, with a distinctively Midlands flavour.

It is not just us ladies that love an afternoon tea! Over at Coombe Abbey gentlemen can enjoy their very own Knights Afternoon Tea.

Coombe Abbey Knight's Gentlemans afternoon tea

Scotch duck egg, Malt Farm pork pie, venison and red wine sausage roll, mature cheddar and sticky pickle sandwich, a chocolate fudge brownie, freshly baked scone with preserves and Cornish clotted cream are served with half a pint of Coombe ale. Available for£19.75 per person (Monday to Friday) and £22.75 per person (Saturday and Sunday).

If you’re Dad likes his food hot, then a Fathers Day Spicy Man Box from Ross and Ross Food may be a good option. As winners of last year’s Best Midlands Street Food at the BBC Good Food Show, these guys are purveyors of fine cheeses, terrines and pates all produced in the Cotswolds.

Ross & Ross Food Fathers Day spicy man box

Goodies contained in the box are a bottle of Pale Whale, British Charcuterie made by the Cotswold Curer, Mr Trotter’s Great British Crackling  pork scratchings flavoured with jalapeno chilli and a jar of smoked apple chutney. All for £20.

So three tasty Father Day gifts all for £20!