Edgbaston Village (@edgbastonvillage) is situated less than a mile from the centre of Birmingham & near the Five Ways roundabout, it’s an exquisite collection of shops, cafes, beauty spots, hotels & restaurants. And in cause of Veganuary I have been testing a few places to give you all an idea of what is on offer!
Click below to go to each venues website:
The Blue Piano- an Asian inspired restaurant & guesthouse with it’s charming interior & gardens perfect for live music & Asian flavours @thebluepiano.brum
The restaurant offers an old-worldy & pleasant atmosphere set in an Edwardian house. Owned by Peter and Siew Kuan Hodgson the guesthouse, restaurant and bar are inspired by Singapore & Cambodia. They are known for their continuous range of live music acts & serene atmosphere to enjoy a delicious meal or drink. And throughout Jan & Feb are offering an exclusive Veganuary Menu…
On arrival I was greeted at the door & shown to a table & given the ‘Veganuary’ Menu to choose from. Peter informed me the Singapore Carrot Cake (£5.95) is a must try dish, so I ordered that to start with.
The Singapore Carrot Cake (£5.95) is a traditional dish in Singapore made with egg & rice flour, however, they have altered the recipe to make a vegan version. Formed into cubes & fried it’s served warm with a sprinkle of spring onion. It’s inside texture is soft, not to dissimilar to tofu & the spicy coating gives it a little kick although the cake itself is quite subtle in flavour. 10/10 recommend & I most definitely wanted an entire plate of this!
Next up was the main course… I went for the Jackfruit & Rambutan Red Curry (£8.95) –a mix of exotic vegetables in a Red Thai Curry sauce sprinkled with peanuts, coriander & served with jasmine rice.
The dish uses yellow jackfruit opposed to the more common green jackfruit giving it a delicious sweet flavour. The Rambutan was new to me & had an almost jelly, squishy consistency & with not a very powerful flavour allowing the jackfruit to really shine here. It came with an array of stir fried veggies in a mildly spicy Red Thai Curry sauce, made creamy with coconut milk & sprinkled with peanuts. The salty peanuts offset the sweet jackfruit perfectly & there was a perfect rice to sauce ratio! A deal breaker for me! I also enjoyed the sheer variety of different veggies used in the dish (mushrooms, peppers, green beans, pineapple).
Overall: Food – incredibly flavoursome, very different to anything I’ve ever tried before.
Service- excellent, attentive & I was well informed about how each dish was created.
Price– extremely reasonable for the portion sizes, quality & freshness!!
Boston Tea Party- a cafe serving breakfast, brunch, lunch & cake perfect for a casual catch-up or to spend an afternoon alone. @btpedgbaston
As we all know by now I am an avid lover of Boston Tea Party & frequently visit for lunch, brunch, cake & anytime I’m meeting someone I always suggest it. It’s got a wide range of options, both vegan & non-vegan. This time around I went for Coffee & Cake as part of their Veganuary Menu. They have 2 clearly labelled vegan options (I have seen others vegan cakes here but these two are the staples).
Boston Tea Party also do incredible coffee with a whole host of plant milks you can choose from at no extra cost. They do all the coffee, tea, milkshakes & smoothies. All food & drink are really clearly labelled vegan on their menu which is perfect.
First up is a Coffee & Walnut Loaf (£2.75)– soft sponge with chunky walnuts in & a light taste of coffee, topped with the thickest strong coffee icing & dried rose. It’s basically everything you wish for in a slice of cake- moist, sweet & more-ish. Definitely my favourite.
Next is the Walnut & Date Slice (£2.75)– flapjack consistency with a sticky date filling running throughout. It’s sticky, slightly crumbly & would suit those with less of a sweet tooth than the previous.
Overall: Food – delicious, hearty & homemade. No fuss just simple pleasure.
Service– staff are always polite & friendly, order-at-the-bar style service.
Price– so affordable, they’re lunch & breakfast options are cheap too!!
The High Field- a gastropub style restaurant & townhouse. Perfect for a classy lunch or dinner. @_thehighfield
The High Field offers a chic, classy interior with a gastropub menu, suiting to everyone’s taste. They have a broad menu (but not a separate Vegan Menu), however, the staff easily pointed out the vegan options to me as well as showing me the Specials Board which changes frequently. I was also told they have a ‘Veggie Night’ every Tuesday featuring veggie & vegan dishes specially curated by the chefs.
For starters I was persuaded into the Sweetcorn Fritters (£7.50) by Harriet who was serving me. She explained the egg they usually used is replaced by a sweetcorn puree so they still bind together before they’re fried but are subsequently vegan.
These fritters were incredible! I was slightly apprehensive at the £7.50 price tag but you certainly get what you pay for! 4 crispy yet soft fritters with a blend of sweetcorn & carrot inside served with salad & THE BEST spicy ketchup. The fritters are quite filling, not spicy which allows the sweetcorn to really shine. The ketchup works well for those who want a kick of heat & I think the salad adds such a nice garnish!
For mains I chose the Roasted Mushroom, Parsnip, Red Lentil & Celeriac Cottage Pie (£14.00) but swapped out the salad for sauteed greens. It came piping hot & smelt incredible. Again I was expecting a lot for a price of £14.00 & I was certainly not disappointed. The filling was a mix of lentils, carrots, parsnip & mushrooms in a thick rich gravy. The mash on top was smooth & creamy, piped so neatly & crispy on the top with a sprinkle of breadcrumbs & herbs.
This may have been the fanciest & most luxurious pie I have ever eaten. The flavour were so warming, not too salty & perfectly balanced & quite honestly one of the most decadent pubs meals I’ve ever had. Being vegan certainly doesn’t mean missing out of proper hearty, comforting & flavoursome food. The greens were perfectly tender & coated in what I think was a little vegan butter.
I was absolutely stuff so decided against dessert, despite the Apple Pie calling my name. I did enjoy a lovely cuppa afterwards & was offered plant-based milk no questions asked.
Overall: Food – hands down the best gastropub food I’ve had as a vegan. Hearty, rich- I want more!
Service- wonderful, staff were so helpful when they knew I was vegan, attentive but not over the top.
Price– a little more on the costly side of a meal out but you defo get what you pay for in terms of quality!!
Loki Wine Merchant & Deli- a unique wine tasting bar. @lokiewine
Loki Wine Merchant & Deli offers a perfect setting to while a away an afternoon or spending an evening with friends sipping away. It’s interior certainly highlights the extraordinary amount of wine, gin, beer & other alcohol available.
They use a ‘vending machine’ like system by which you load a card with credit, insert it into the wine machines & select which tipple takes your fancy & how much you would like to try. I think this is a fantastic idea as you can try as many or as few you as you’d like, have a full glass of one you love & you don’t have to have the same as those around you. So the experience really is individualized to your own tastes.
Each wine has its own description & includes handy symbols for whether it’s suitable for Vegetarians or Vegans or neither. Victoria who manages Loki told me the extent of research that was needed to gather this information about each wine. And I assured her it was most helpful & so important to vegans to have clarification over what they drink as well as what we eat. Furthermore, it’s fantastic to see such a unique place & concept consider vegans & allow us to be able to enjoy it with our non-vegan friends.
They also offer a range of deli snacks to accompany the wine & have thought to include a few for vegans too.
Overall: Food/Drink – an abundance of alcohol to choose from
Service- lovely, very knowledgeable staff & clearly they know what they’re talking about.
Price– tailored to you, depending if you want to try more or less.
So there we have it. What more could you ask for this Veganuary from Edgbaston Village. I hope this gives an insight into what is available for vegans in Birmingham. There will be a part 2 of this exploration of Edgbaston coming soon!!
Peace & Plants,
Disclaimer: I am working with Edgbaston Village to bringing you this post however, all opinions & photos are my own taken from my own experience.