October 2015, Our lunch experience When planning our travel through the UK in October 2015 we wanted to have lunch at a Michelin starred restaurant in Birmingham. There were two choices for us we liked to pursue on this particular visit to the city: Purnell’s Restaurant or Adam’s. Purnell’s Restaurant was longer on our list, so we decided to reserve a table there. || PURNELL'S RESTAURANT || 1* MICHELIN STAR || CHEF: GLYNN PURNELL || BIRMINGHAM || ENGLAND || UK || OUR MEMORABLE LUNCH VISIT || OCTOBER 2015 || by UggBoy UggGirl, on Flickr Glynn Purnell was born in 1975 in Birmingham on a council estate, so Brummies are very proud of their “son”. His first cooking experience was preparing meals for his siblings. The building itself is unassuming and understated. Only a few signs with a big P on the wall indicate that Purnell’s Restaurant is located there. The interior is totally different. It’s modern with a bar in the front and the dining room at the back with a colorful carpet and tapestry. There is also a small window, allowing guests to spy on the chefs or vice versa. When we entered we were warmly greeted, asked for our name and our coats were taken. The table was ready and we were invited into the dining room. It was already relatively full with a group of businessmen and women, couples and another small group. The atmosphere was convivial, upscale and upbeat, all this matched the setting in harmony. Our table had partial views into the kitchen. I sometimes had the luck to spot Glynn Purnell and his brigade. We were asked if we would like to order some drinks before being presented with the menu. I asked for an alcohol free cocktail and was re-assured that it was possible and no problem at all. My fiancé ordered a glass of Billcard Salmon Rose Champagne. My mocktail was made with cranberry and pineapple juice and elderflower. It was very well balanced, not too sweet and not too bitter. The Maître d’ commented on the Champagne and said rose was a good choice, because it had a more intense flavor. We ordered from the three course lunch menu and had a bottle of still water with it. The greetings from the kitchen were potato balls with curry mayonnaise from the Brummie Tapas menu. They were tasty. The presentation was Asian inspired. The mayonnaise was served in an understated black stone dish. The potato balls were finger food. They came with two little white rolls on a white porcelain plate. We were advised by the waitress not to eat the white rolls, since they weren’t edible. We wondered what they were. We found out with the help of “magic”. Another waiter came with a pot of boiling water and dowsed the balls in it. They suddenly grew and turned into hand towels. A fresh loaf of bread was served too. It was really delicious, one of the best we had in a longer time and again we were told by the Maître d’ that it had a good flavor. Our first course was the Beetroot Escabeche. It was very enjoyable and colorful. Our main meal was Brixham cod with pumpkin puree and carrots. This was one of the best fish dishes we had. It was pure melt in the mouth. Originally we expected as dessert a macaroon, checking the online menu, but it had changed. Instead we had a chocolate banana cake with frozen yogurt. Normally I’m not a big fan of this, but this one was gooey, chocolaty with neither the banana nor the chocolate overpowering and very satisfying. The flavor was full on. The cake looked more like a tart. As a dessert wine he ordered the Legacy of the Barossa from the Dandelion Vineyards with 30 year old Pedro Ximenez. He loved it. It was syrupy and sweet, but not cloyingly. Later the Maître d’ had some more time to chat with us and wanted to know where we were from. He recommended we should visit Patrick Gilbaud, a two Michelin starred restaurant, or Rustic Stone by Dylan McGrath, when he heard we were from Ireland. By now we have eaten at Rustic Stone, but not managed Patrick Gilbaud so far. We were very happy with his suggestions. The staff is a great access to the restaurant too, very caring, friendly, attentive and knowledgeable. A visit to the bathrooms is unusual. You enter a totally different world. The floor is covered in jungle wall paper and there are birds tweeting in the background. There’s also a full view through a glass door to the kitchen. My fiancé was lucky and was greeted by the complete brigade. Too soon it was time to pay and leave this memorable restaurant. The bill came in at 120 GBP (ca. 152 Euro or ca. 170 USD). We loved our lunch experience at Purnell’s. Would we recommend this restaurant to a friend? YES? Would we look forward to visit this particular restaurant in our future again? YES!