Going for gold


There has been Michelin stars, food industry awards and accolades aplenty for our West Midlands pubs and restaurants to celebrate this month.

Congratulations to Warwick’s Tasca Dali who has been awarded Best Spanish Restaurant of the year at the first Restaurant Awards 2019 – Midlands Edition. Owner Alex Gidon Clayton told the Warwick Courier: “I decided to open a restaurant in Warwick because I thought it was an amazing town with a good sense of community and history and place where I could take a risk to do something different. At Tasca Dali we try and give people the traditional way of Spanish cooking. We work with what is in season, what dishes are appropriate for the weather and what is good value.”

The Drawing Board in Leamington has been named the UK’s Best Beer Pub in Great British Pub Awards.The Leamington venue opened in 2015 and has created a beer selection including their own beer, Elephant Wash brewed with Old Pie Factory in Warwick. The team also own the DB Bottle Shop  at 3 Court Street,  which specialises in craft beer and Japanese whisky.

Monsoon Estates Coffee Company  has won nine (yes nine!)  gold stars at the national Great Taste Awards. The family-run business specialises in hand-roasted, small batch coffees and their  Ethiopian Guji Derikocha coffee was one of only six coffees in the UK to be awarded the top rated three stars.

When the Michelin awards were announced last week, there was good news for the West Midlands. Lee Westcott from Pensons restaurant   and Aktar Islam’s Opheem were awarded their first stars.

Still in Birmingham congratulations to The High Field  for scooping the Best Gastropub in the Midlands in the Food Awards England ceremony.

Spring into a new season of events

March 2018 (19)
The gloves are off as Hampton Manor plays host to a Battle Royale between two egos of the Birmingham wine scene, over a decadent four course dinner with two paired wines per course. This Wine Dinner Gent vs Rebel  evening kicks off a new season of delicious food and drink events in March.

In Hereford you can learn from brand ambassadors at the Secret Bottle Shop’s Rum Tasting or enjoy a South Africa Wine Tasting of the county’s most popular blends at Longworth Hall.

Leamington is hosting a trio of special dinners. The Tame Hare joins forces with Tailors of Warwick for an Un-tamed Dinner with a collaboration of dishes, The Star & Garter gives us a Spring Sneak Peek  at their new menu and the ever popular Classic Bistro Evening returns with four French classic dishes at Oscars.

There’s chocolate and craft beer on the menu in Coventry at the Meet the Brewer  evening at Beer Gonzo as well as the Chocolate Festival at Fargo Village (which is perfectly timed for Easter and Mothers Day gift shopping).

Head over to Birmingham for the Brewers’ Lectures at the Custard Factory’s Old Library from industry experts and a gastro pub night of Dinner and wine pairing at The High Field in leafy Edgbaston.

Staffordshire’s Three Horseshoes Inn  is hosting a Wine Dinner with Nigel Wilkinson, Master Sommelier with Boutinot Wines,who  will introduce six carefully selected wines paired with a five course tasting menu. Or if gin is your favourite tipple, put the Chase Distillery Tasting in your diary at Webbs in Wychbold.

All of the details are over on the Events page. Enjoy!

Winter Warmers

Now that there are morning frosts and a nip in the air, here are five winter warmers to help keep the chill at bay.


As a change from mulled wine how about mulled cider? The Bitters n Twisted bars in Brum are splashing Rekoorderling spiced plum cider into two new cocktails – a Rum n Plum with Brugal spiced rum and a Whiskey Wonderland, with Jim Beam Double Oak and Aztec gold tequila and lime.


There aren’t many times that you can say that you are drinking inside an igloo, so book up one of the new pods sitting outside Gas Street Social in the Mailbox. The room with a view seats up to ten people. There will be a minimum spend, but guests will be get waiter service while relaxing in the stylish igloos, furnished with blankets, (fake) wolf skins and lanterns. On offer is the Finlandia Vodka package for £10, including a bottle of vodka, jugs of mixers and a platter of Aspen fries.


The Park Regis festive afternoon tea includes ‘Snow White’ marshmallow and coconut knot, lemon frangipane drizzle, clementine mousse, ‘Nut-Crackers’ dark chocolate macarons, scones with jam and clotted cream, and a glazed ‘Egg-Nog’ brulee tart. Alongside this are a delicious assortment of savoury snacks, including British roast turkey sandwiches with cranberry and apple chutney, Warwickshire truckle cheese with red onion chutney sandwiches and ‘Sleigh’ roasted sirloin of beef on a toasted brioche bun. To kick the whole thing off are a duo of festive amuse bouches.


As an alternative to the Frankfurt Christmas Market, local DJ Dean Brennan has organised a new Winter market featuring Birmingham food, drink and musicians. Running from noon to 10pm Tuesday to Sunday, expect to see Baked in Brick among the street food traders and warm yourself up on mulled wine, hot chestnuts and warmed mince pies at the Winter Social.


The High Field in Edgbason has opened a heated terrace with a warm, cosy area with heaters and fleecy blankets to fend off those sub zero temperatures. Tucked under a canvas roof, The Yard also has its own outdoor bar, the Peroni Retro Rocket, serving chilled beers from an American style aluminium trailer.