Land, it’s all in the ingredients: Restaurant Review.

The list of ingredients on The Land tasting menu reads like an autumn almanac of what’s great and good and the best you can get in the Autumn months. That I guess is the ethos of Land that it thinks about the dishes it presents and the ingredients that make them, not delving into the latest trends that are thrown at us daily by the media.

This is what makes Land different to other Vegetarian and Vegan restaurants in Birmingham. The desire to lift the core ingredient to its highest point and make it better. I’ve eaten at L’Enclume in the Lake District and though not in that league Land has a similar ethos to make the small beautiful, inspired by the land.

Land has grown out of the ashes of Bistro 1847 which was the original ingredients led Vegetarian restaurant in Birmingham.

Brought by chefs Tony Cridland and Adrian Luck from 1847 Land sits in the beautiful Great Western Arcade and is a light but warm cosy restaurant with caring and passionate service from Front of house Damien is a joy. They know what they are doing.

After eating the amuse Bouche (below) and home made bread, we both knew we were in for an outstanding night of food. Both were well executed and well presented.

The Chef’s menu that Ruth and I ate from is 6 courses for £40.

A strength of any restaurant in presenting a 6 course menu is how they can take you on a journey from the first course to the last. Land’s chef menu on the night we visited demonstrated the art of delivering this by heightening the anticipation of each course. Well thought out dishes, that folded into each other and told their own story gave a warning feeling that brought a smile to our faces.

Take the Potato-goats cheese, onion, lovage first course: a warming dish, with a depth of autumn flavours that enticed the palate and was beautifully constructed.

A Butternut squash-Laska-chard-noodle dish was a wonderful plate of joy. The soft squash, taken with the tender noodles with a splash of chard made for an interesting flavour that worked on every level.

Next, Celeriac-oyster mushroom- cheddar-truffle, took one of my favourite ingredients-the celeriac and have it a voice of its own. Pitched alongside the humble mushroom and truffle made for an earthy dish that tasted and smelt of Autumn.

We progressed to the Potato and Swede Terrine-pease pudding-tamarind: delicate curry notes wafted through this dish, a harmonious concerto of flavours, beautifully presented, bright, vivid, my favourite course of the night which I could have ate again. A real stunner.

Onto dessert : Pumpkin-walnut-red-current: Another stunningly presented plate of colour that was beautiful as a palate cleanser and what a way to deliver a pumpkin! They’re not just for Halloween. A superb dessert.

The final course, Apple-caramel-bay leaf-hazelnut: a lovely ending to the chefs menu. Tangy Apple with caramel and the crunchy texture of hazelnuts perfectly presented.

In the even tide of Autumn the drawing in of light warrants food that sings and comforts and warms us from the cold glare of Winters approach, Land ticks the promise that all will be ok with the world.

The nature of the produce used and the ingenious presentation demonstrated the best use of the produce of the season.

The focus on the ingredients through the beautifully presented dishes created a harmonious and perfectly flowing tasting menu with Exquisite flavours and textures.

Land provided a culinary celebration of plant focused dining that takes you on a culinary adventure and begs for a return visit.

The best meal of the year.

Our food was complimentary, but all drinks consumed were paid for.

Thanks for reading.


Vegetarian Dish of the Day: Squash velouté, gnocchi, Burnt Leek, Feta Terrine. Bistro 1847. 

Many years ago when I first became a Vegetarian, I was often greeted when I ate out with the words ‘vegetarian dish of the day’. 

This generally meant a mushroom stroganoff, a pasta bake, a veggie curry, or a badly made risotto or pasta dish. Though it sometimes still happens and restaurants sometimes dress it up in another guise, things are much better now. This was often very disheartening. 

This occasional inspired post is a play on that and reflects that bygone era with fondness and celebrates a current dish that is worthy of highlighting. 


Catch it whilst you can. As restaurants change over from their Spring menu to Summer offerings, it leaves you with only one week to try out this sumptuous dish from Vegetarian restaurant Bistro 1847 in Birmingham. 

Humour, seasonality and an inventive ambition belies the ethos of Bistro 1847. Never has this been more true than in the case of the Squash velouté, gnocchi, Burnt Leek, Feta Terrine. Poached not boiled, ballotined and rolled, the texture of the gnocchi has a lightness akin to soufflé, with a super soothing, velvety,  deep orange sunset flavour of the squash sauce, providing colour, flavour and a gold winning touch. Throw in a burnt leek, adeptly charred with soft decadent feta terrine and you have a beautifully balanced and stunning plate of food. 

Best not to hang around, it’s going, going, gone, try it out this week. 

Find it at Bistro 1847, 26 Great Western Arcade, Colmore Row, Birmingham, B2 5HU. 

         The same dish, a different look. From a second visit. I didn’t eat that one, my Dad did and he’s eaten it twice now,  so it must be good!

Bistro 1847 do a lunch time £10 offer for one course and a drink (wine, beer or soft drink) 

A variation of the dish review originally appeared in May during National Vegetarian Week, in the I Choose Birmingham online weekly magazine. I payed for my own food (lunch time) at Bistro 1847 and didn’t receive any payment for the review. I chose the restaurant and dish myself and my opinions are honest and my own as always. 

Thanks to I Choose Birmingham for asking me to contribute to their ‘You choose’ section of their magazine. 

to sign up for their weekly email magazine. 

Thanks for reading. 
Andy 😊

Bistro 1847 are launching their Intro to Summer menu on Monday June 22nd with a five course menu in Birmingham with matched wines for £25. 

 Details here 


Bistro 1847 kickstarts its crowdfunding: New Vegetarian  beginnings. 


Vegetarian 1847 is planning to open this autumn in Liverpool and are looking for support through their Kickstarter campaign.

Bistro 1847 is also crowdfunding to: 

. Open 1847 Liverpool

. Extend their current sites in Manchester and Birmingham and include their pantry table items to be eaten in the office or at home. 

.  Launch their cookery school, allowing their employees the space to develop their skills, plus open it to the public as a cookery school for those wishing to learn about fresh and foraged ingredients. 

Bistro 1847 launched in Manchester in February 2011 and then in Birmingham in 2013. 

Through fundraising these ambitions may be realised. As banks unfortunately are reluctant to back small companies in these expansion ventures. 

Take a look below for more details:

Recently myself and Ruth were invited to the launch night of their Kickstarter campaign in Birmingham and were treated to a delicious 7 course meal by the team, and had the opportunity to meet and discuss the God with new Head Chef Tony Cridland. 

I’m not going to review every dish but suffice to say we both loved the dishes and particularly a shout out to the 

starter: 63 degree poached egg, chargrilled asparagus and salted baby turnip. 


 And the main: ratatouille, red pepper jus, burnt aubergine purée, polenta hash brown, chard red onion, confit tomato.



We also enjoyed a pre starter: 

Pea purée, basil jam, grapefruit in pastry case and sea salt

Pickled mushroom, chargrilled cucumber

Beetroot soup, coconut creme, with dark chocolate 



Pre Dessert: poppy seed, banana custard, peach rhubarb, micro coriander. 



Apricot and thyme jam, tofu almond creme, sugar, cubed coated strawberries. 



The combinations of ‘foraged, grown and brewed’ ingredients is what makes Bistro 1847 unique and a pioneer in new Vegetarian food.

Bistro 1847 have also introduced a pantry table, for takeaway and eating in at lunchtime as well as the main A La Carte menu. 

Look out for a full review soon on Veggie Foodie of their Spring menu. 

For full details of investment opportunities see here:

Thanks for reading

Andy 😊

I was invited to the launch of the 1847 Kickstarter campaign, All food and drinks were complimentary, but I have not been paid to write this blog, I just support Vegetarian food ideals and restaurants.




National Vegetarian Week 18th-24th May 2015.

This week, the 18th-24th May is National Vegetarian Week. 

National Vegetarian week 2015 is organised by the Vegetarian Society and sponsored by ‘Nothing But’. This year the theme is all about sharing and enjoying delicious veggie food with your friends, family, colleagues, neighbours, and community. It’s a great way to connect with those around you and explore tasty meat-free food together. 

Vegetarian food is vibrant, exciting and flavourful. Whether using the freshest ingredients, from the supermarket, farmers market, or from your garden, or eating out, good meat free food is getting easier to find and is great to cook. Meat-free food benefits the environment, animals and yes your health and well being. 

Some Restaurants and individuals are all doing their bit to promote and celebrate the week. 

In the UK a national pizza tour is taking place. The Vegetarian Society is visiting seven cities (but not Birmingham) creating and delivering pizzas to share.  So watch pizza being  made, and help choose the toppings. 

For the seven locations see below:

To find out more about the week and how you can get involved see the below link for National Vegetarian Week.
In Birmingham, try out vegetarian restaurants Warehouse Cafe, Bistro 1847, Veg Out Cafe, Deepalis, Jyoti, or Mr Singh’s, or try a veggie dish on any menu for a change. 

In Sutton Coldfield Moor Hall Hotel and Spa ‘Veges out’ for National Vegetarian Week. 

Moor Hall Hotel & Spa in Sutton Coldfield is inviting customers to join in a delicious and fun celebration of vegetarian food as part of National Vegetarian Week, which runs from 18th – 24th May. 

Now in its 23rd year, National Vegetarian Week is organised by the Vegetarian Society to promote delicious and inspirational vegetarian food.

There are always plenty of choices for vegetarians at Moor Hall’s restaurants and whether you have been a vegetarian for some time or you would like to try a meat free meal, the hotel is well worth a visit during the week as there is 20% off all vegetarian dishes from the Oak Room and Terrace & Bar menus. The dishes on offer include starters such as warm walnut encrusted goats’ cheese with baby leaves and main courses such as pea, mint & feta risotto or warmed halloumi cheese with lime, pine nuts and a tomato fondue.

Head Chef, Charlotte Foster commented “National Vegetarian Week is a fantastic opportunity to try going meat-free for a change. At Moor Hall we take great pride in producing a variety of creative and tasty vegetarian dishes that meat eaters will enjoy too, so we hope our special offer will encourage more customers to give our vegetarian dishes a try.”

National Vegetarian Week 2015 is organised by the Vegetarian Society. 

Monday 18th is also Meat Free Monday, and Cafe Opus at the Ikon Gallery have a meat free Monday menu every week. 

Also The Plough in Harborne have a weekly specials board of Vegetarian dishes. 

Thanks for reading. 

Andy 😊

The information on Moor Hall Hotel is courtesy of Moor Hall Hotel and their PR department I was not required to write about their contribution to this week but chose to.

Veg Out Cafe: Vegetarian and Vegan dinner in kings Heath Birmingham

Veg Out Cafe is an Independently owned cafe and restaurant on popular Poplar Road in Kings Heath, in the South of Birmingham. 

As with many Vegetarian places it covers all bases and is open all day Monday-Friday, Friday and Saturday evenings and for Sunday brunch. 

Veg Out is a smallish, minimal and friendly in the community kind of place with colourful walls adorned with art work. It has large windows bringing in lots of natural light, apart from after dark when we visited of course, but that’s stating the obvious. 

The furniture and floors are wooden, sturdy and won’t rock and roll as you eat your soup or tuck into a vegetarian breakfast (there Arn’t many things worse). There are potted plants, community information on the walls and a gaiety of spirit that only a thoughtful independent business beholds. The care and attention to its customers, that bellies the Kings Heath vibe. 

Positively, there is a Bring your own on alcohol which keeps the price down and makes Veg Out Cafe one of the best value places around. 

Veg Out Cafe do a set price menu which includes vegan options. 3 courses for £ 17.95 and 2 courses for £17.95. 

On the Saturday evening that Ruth and I visited the restaurant was busy and had a good buzzy atmosphere. 

After a quick drink en route from home at Fletchers Bar on York Road we decided on looking at the menu to go for the 3 course menu. 

We both chose the Ravioli set on a cauliflower and Tarragon puréed mushroom and cream sauce to start. 

Our Ravioli was excellent. Though it felt quite small in size (though that was probably because we were hungry) the Ravioli was hand made, had a good flavour and was cooked perfectly, and with the complimentary flavours of the cauliflower, tarragon and cream lifted it into a fine starter, one demonstrating a touch of quality in the cooking and presentation. 

For my main course I chose the Cannelini Al gratin with fennel, garlic served with wilted spinach. 

The Cannelini Al Gratin was also very good, warming, filling and hearty. Packed with a subtle garlic and fennel flavour it was a good size and a really tasty main. The Spinach gave it a contrasting texture and made for a good main course. 

Ruth chose the Kale salad with artichoke, garlic potatoes, chilli and white wine. A pretty dish that she commended for its healthy, filling and flavoursome potatoes, which she enjoyed a lot. 

For pudding Ruth had the sorbet which she found refreshing and a healthier choice. Sorry no photo as Ruth had started before I could get one taken. 

I went for The Sticky Toffee Pudding with Double Cream. 

A sticky toffee pudding is one of my favourite puddings, it is for me one of my taste tests along with tiramisu, fresh bread and chips. (To name a few)  having eaten Sticky Toffee Pudding in the Lake District and North Yorkshire I’ve had it where it was created. 

I was very impressed with Veg Out Cafe’s sticky toffee pudding. It was superbly toffee flavoured, a good size, perfectly cooked, not burnt or overlooked but moist, and with the right amount of cream to give it the contrast in flavour. A super job, well worth having if on the menu.  

The menu at Veg Out changes weekly usually so what Ruth and I ate may not be what you will find. I like the fact that the menu changes, it keeps it seasonal and fresh for both the chef and the customer who visits frequently. 

Check Twitter and Facebook for their menus and their website. 

I would have liked to have had some fresh bread when we arrived especially as exquisite independent bakery Maison Mayci is on the same road. Maybe to nibble on arrival or over the menu. I know how good the bread is there. 

Throughout the service was friendly, enthusiastic and prompt and with a buzzy feel to the atmosphere made for a very engaging evening. 

Veg Out Cafe is a brilliant Vegetarian place to go for an informal weekend evening. It’s casual, fun and the food is delicious, well made and shows a creative touch that is well executed and presented well. 

Veggies, Vegans  and meat eaters alike will enjoy the ambience and welcome and the price. As the hashtag on their website says #wecarewhatyoueat. 

Who can dispute that. 

Veg Out Cafe, 46 Poplar Road, Birmingham, B14 7AG.
We paid for our own meal all opinions in the view are my own, honest at all times. 

Thanks for reading 😊


Has anyone been to Veg Out Cafe? What did you think, what’s your favourite time to visit? 

In my previous review I reviewed Veg Out Cafe’s lunch and daytime menu: 

see my review here:

You can now receive 10% off your bill with the Independent Birmingham Card so this makes the evening weekend deal even better value. 

Unfortunately the deal became live a day or so after we visited. But another time😊

See what they say here: