I’ve received some fantastic food invitations in my blogger inbox as of late and this one especially was one I couldn’t refuse. I’m so grateful that Harvey Nichols, Birmingham got in touch to invite me to enjoy a complimentary experience of their new Summer Dining menu. It’s a promotional offer running until Thursday 31stAugust and they’re looking for foodies of Brum to come and try it. The best part? For just £22, you receive a starter, main meal and dessert off a set menu. This of course includes one of two cocktail choices. The chef has specifically designed a refreshing menu to run during July and a different menu to run through August. Both menus offer vegetarian, vegan, meat and fish options and there is something to suit everyone.
The restaurant area is well lit, with gold interior, hanging lights and wine glasses on every table. It’s as every bit classy as you would expect. The restaurant seemed a little bit empty when we first arrived at 7pm on a Thursday night, but what we didn’t know was that a huge group of around 30 people would soon turn up and fill the remaining tables. It was because of this big crowd that we were told the Prawn and Crab Ceviche starter wasn’t available. A little bit disappointing as that is what we were going to choose. Although the menu is limited, as mentioned before, there really is something for everyone and we ended up choosing two Ham Hock starters to begin. For drink of choice, we opted for two Bombay Saphire, Mint and Ginger Twist cocktails.
Wine, Dine, Sunshine Starters
The Ham Hock, Shallots, Spring Onion and Chicory arrived in good time, and the presentation was superb. A smallish portion, the ham balanced out the crispness of the sides and overall, it was a simple starter but satisfying. Funnily enough, the Gin cocktail (more like fishbowls) actually brought out the flavour in the ham.
Harvey Nichols Main Dishes
For my main, I opted for the Confit Duck Leg with Baby Beetroot and Garlic Puree. We had to order side dishes separately to the mains, so I asked for some orange carrots and fries on the side. I did enjoy the meal, it was very colourful and was presented really lovely on the plate, however I felt it was lacking a bit of flavour. The duck tasted as though it had been overcooked, and the skin wasn’t crispy as I usually like it. I mentioned this at the end of the meal (for feedback) and the waiter told me the duck is slow cooked for 6+ hours so they have no control over that. The baby beetroot was a lovely addition and although I wouldn’t scream about this meal, I can’t argue that for £22 for all dishes and a cocktail, it was a lovely invitation to have.
Truth be told, (and I can’t believe I’m saying this) but I actually preferred the taste of Josh’s Tandoori Fish, Bombay Potatoes and Spiced Pinapple Salsa to my duck. It was very tender and the chunks of fish broke apart easily. The flavouring was just right, not too hot or spicy and was satisfying when dipped in the salsa. Once again, it wasn’t an outstanding meal, but couldn’t fault the presentation.
Harvey Nichols Dessert
My favourite part of the meal was the pudding. I asked for the Lemon Ice Cream, with Raspberry Marshmallow and Lemon Sherbert. I wanted something sweet to balance out the heaviness of the duck dish. It came out looking like a little mini mushroom which was super cute and very Instagrammable. The colours of the ice cream and sauce combined well and it was a very lovely dish. The ice cream was thick and creamy and the tangy marshmallow gave the dessert the kick it needed. Josh’s pudding was the Chocolate Sponge, Chocolate Ganache with Cherries (vegetarian). I didn’t actually try his but it was great to take photos of.
Overall, we were happy with our meal but just expected that tiny bit more when it came to flavour. I would like to thank the lovely PR Hanna Gamble at Harvey Nichols for the wonderful invitation to The Mailbox. The meals were satisfying and although I would have liked my duck that little bit more pink with crispy skin, I definitely wouldn’t turn down trying the August menu which is yet to be revealed. The restaurant is open Monday: 10am – 7pm / Tuesday –Saturday: 10am – 10:30pm / Sunday: 11am – 10pm / Sunday 2 July: 11am – 8pm. For more information on their full menus, visit the Harvey Nichols website.
Address: Birmingham Dining, The Mailbox, 65 Wharfside Street, B1 1RE