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Birmingham-born Glyn Purnell’s mission was to make his home city a premier-league foodie destination – and from where we’re sitting, it looks like he’s succeeded. As a star of the Brummie scene and a “special-occasion venue with incredible cooking and top-class service”, his flagship restaurant knows exactly how to satisfy its customers. Despite some precious dish descriptions, audacious tasting menus are the way to go. The version entitled ‘now’ could feature roast Brixham turbot with broad bean vinaigrette, yoghurt, toasted cumin and quinoa, while the ‘reminisce’ option takes diners down memory lane with conceits such as ‘emotions of cheese and pineapple’ on sticks or roast coquelet with chicken toast, pea custard and caramelised onion. Well-spaced tables and smart, neutral decor suit the business crowd as well as courting couples, while polished staff are marshalled by maître d’ Jean-Benoit Burloux, who combines matinée idol looks with unflappable charm and inestimable knowledge of the food and wine list.
good british near birmingham new street. purnell’s is apparently well-known for its chef – though I hadn’t really heard of him previously – and after reading a couple of mixed reviews I wasn’t quite sure about what we would be getting.we were directed into a cosy corner, which I was initially pleased with, until I realised that behind us was the exit by which the waiters and chefs and workmen took to get outside and so we had to contend with that throughout the meal. no matter though as I didn’t ask to move; our waiter was french and very polite and pleasant, even reminding us to eat while the dish was warm....
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Amongst the ranks of TV chefs, Glynn Purnell must be one of the best entertainers. With his cheeky style, the Yummy Brummy has been showing 1* star nosh at his restaurant since 2009. Birmingham is a business city, so what better test for his cooking than a busy mid-week lunch service. Locals certainly seem to be impressed if the repeat custom is anything to go by, but does Glynn deserve to hold onto his rating?...
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