I can’t even begin to tell you how refreshing it is to be invited to a restaurant opening that’s not in Birmingham City Centre. With so many new openings as of late, it’s hard to keep up with so many new places. So when an opportunity came along to review 1580, an Indian restaurant on Chester Road outside of the town centre, I was really intrigued as I currently love trying out new Indian restaurants. 1580 had put some thought behind their initial blogger welcome and sent out an email explaining why the restaurant is named what it is and a bit of background information. Kudos for doing that, I like to know the extra details.
The restaurant is dimly lit but they have mastered the art of beautiful decor lighting features. With a nautical theme running through the restaurant, the main dining area is relatively small so a group of us bloggers, writers and journalists packed out the room within minutes. What I appreciated most is the waiters who asked you throughout the night if they could refill your drink. Unfortunately for me I was driving but could see so many people enjoying the wine and beverages. Restaurant 1580 is actually named after sailor Sir Francis Drake who circumnavigated the earth in search for glittering gems and exotic spices. His quest was so worthwhile that when returning with the spices that were so valuable, Queen Elizabeth knighted Drake after helping to pay off the national debt. Hero and an inspiration it seems…
We split onto different tables and the waiters brought out some Masala Poppadums to begin with. I’ve never actually eaten them like this before as in any other place you would receive flat ones, so it was definitely an interesting start. The chutney and dips were spicy, tangy and so deliciously sweet, it was a very refreshing first course. The 1580 menu keeps to the authentic Indian theme but is incredibly varied in choice of dishes.
Drake’s Royal Meat Feast Platter For 2
Our table of four were offered a choice of either vegetable starters or a meat platter. We opted for the meat and out came a decent sized slate filled with sizzling delicious grub. The non-veg starter consisted of Murgh Tikka – Sizzling Chiken Tikka (£7.95) Kochi Kekraa – Tender strips of Crab (£8.45), tender Lamb Chops (£9.95) and Zaffrani Bada Jingha Tikka – Tiger Prawns (£11.45). We were able to try a few bites of each which would have cost £24.45 and the flavours were pretty extraordinary. I’m not a fan of spicy food but this was just the right amount of hot, well worth a try, especially if on a date night so you can share.
Main meals at 1580
For the main courses, we were asked again whether we wanted the vegetarian or meat option and what we received was amazing. The Bater Curry on the bone (£12.95) is an unusual Tandoori quail, cooked with fresh ginger-garlic, tomatoes, onions and green chili in a typical North Indian railway style – not a typical dish you would normally order at a curry house but oh so tasty! The Murgh Tikka Chicken Masala (£8.45) is a Tandoori chicken tikka cooked to perfection in chunky tomato and onion gravy. And finally, the Pot Pepper Lamb Curry (£8.95) was the showstopper for me, perfectly tender with onions, tomatoes, spices and mix coloured peppers. All were served with naan and rice and were definitely needed to soak up the sauces.
Gulab Jamun Dessert
For dessert, we were served the Galub Jamun (£3.95), which can be described as a reduction of milk, cottage cheese dumplings, served hot with a scoop of vanilla and coconut ice cream. I really enjoy sweet desserts and although it wasn’t too heavy, it was a perfect way to end the meal. I really enjoy creamy desserts so the sweetness of this made me ‘mmmm’ – I thoroughly enjoyed the whole meal, bravo!
Thanks to 1580 for hosting such a wonderful blogger meal, it seems that everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves and the food was of high standard. I would really like to take my boyfriend there at some point as we’re so used to being consumed by the Birmingham restaurants. This is a perfect place to visit if you’re looking for somewhere different, unique and incredibly refreshing when it comes to Indian dining.
Address: Chester Road, Erdington, Birmingham B23 5TE
Please note: I was invited to 1580 with a group of bloggers to sample the new menu. The food and drinks were complimentary in return for an honest (and slightly late) blog review.