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Jamie’s Italian Review Birmingham Bull Ring (in Kimono)

You can always judge an Italian by its spaghetti bolognese. So I had already decided this was to be my main course. My last spag bol was in a decent Frankie and Bennies so they didn’t have much competition.

The staff were efficient and seemed to know what was what, for instance being able to reassure my sister that the bruschetta that we both ordered would not be too strong on the garlic. Our waitress was correct.

The bread came out on a small chopping board style arrangement with a piece of paper in-between the bread and board. A novel idea, however, being female, wearing lipgloss and not wanting the heavy laden mushrooms up my nose or falling on my lap I had to use a knife and fork. No picking up and eating for me, especially not in kimono! This however presented a problem, the paper underneath got soggy and ripped. I had to avoid eating it. The starter however was very nice, but next time I will request a plate.

My sister and I wanted three courses so we opted for the smaller main course. It is small so I would not recommend it for a man. However it was great for us as we wanted to have a pudding and be able to walk back to the car. The spag bol was probably my favourite so far and I have eaten at a lot of Italian restaurants. It was different but didn’t detract too much from the traditional spag bol taste to frighten off someone like my Dad. (not into fancy food, steak, chips and apple pie classically) so next time I visit I might be a piggy and have a large one.

For pudding, I chose the panna cotta. Although the taste was fantastic my sister poked it with the flip side of her spoon and it wobbled much more than it should. It should be stabilised with gelatine and not a creamy jelly with a slight transparent layer covering it. Another noted faux pas was the lack of dessert forks. The desserts are quite dainty and you are given a lopping great mains fork which feels a bit awkward in a place with such an air of grace and contemporary sophistication.

However, for two drinks (Bellini and a coke), water on the table, two starters, two small mains and two sweets the bill came to £40.20. Its cheap enough so you can eat your fill and posh enough that you can take people ‘out to dinner’ there.

I will go back soon taking my husband and I will have the same food but maybe make him share some garlic chips!

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