It’s been ages since I was last in Birmingham and it’s changed beyond recognition. It has such a cosmopolitan feel about it and for a food lover, it has an eclectic mix from high style Michelin Star restaurants through to some fascinating food styles and street food.
It was purely by chance I was chatting to a mate, Richard Pope, on Twitter the other evening and he introduced me to Andy Stubbs of Andy’s Low and Slow (@andylownslow). I wasn’t familiar with Andy’s Smoked BBQ set up but it just so happened that he was having a pop-up at BrewDogs the following evening.
Now, as you know, I have a bit of a thing for pop-ups at the moment, having hosted the first in The Parlour Series. So this was an opportunity not to be missed. I’m on my way Birmingham!
LowNSlow at BrewDogs Birmingham
So, to Brewdogs with Richard Pope where we met up with Rob Wood, a bartender, mixologist who can be found operating at a number of bars in Brum, including one which you will hear about later.
Arguably, I’m a bit too old for BrewDogs, but I don’t care because I’m here! Its a great and very successful concept which originated in Aberdeen and is now worldwide. Their success is based on their diverse collection of great craft beers. They have a somewhat unconventional business model called Equity for Punks and they have about 14,500 investors.
We ordered the complete menu between the three of us simply because we had to taste it all. It was delicious.
I met up with Andy, briefly. He told me that he had no particular interest in food until a redundancy a few years ago when he started to experiment with BBQ food and smoking. He spent some time travelling throughout the southern states of America, including Texas, with a quest to develop the art and skill of smoking food.
Andy smokes all of his food himself and whilst running his pop-ups, street food stalls etc it’s pretty much a 24/7 job. He’s also king of social media!
Well the smoked brisket, which has taken time to perfect, tasted deliciously smoky whilst retaining the wonderful beefy flavour. Pig Cheek Tacos were very scrummy as were the perfectly flavoured Baby Back Ribs.
It was great to meet Andy and I hope we will meet up again very soon…. perhaps in Broadway!
40 St Pauls
I haven’t told you about Richard Pope. I am not sure if I am overstating this but Richard is a great bon viveur. We get on well as we share a passion for food (and drink). Our Richard knows how to hit the scene in Brum and the next stop was a recently opened Gin Bar, 40 St Pauls, where Rob shows off his expert cocktail skills along with Amanjot Johal. Its a great, cosy little stop off in the Jewellery Quarter, which is fast becoming a vibrant and lively area. This bar isn’t easy to find but don’t give up on it!
I settled for a Winter Gin and Tonic, warmly and seasonally flavoured with cinnamon, nutmeg, Tonka Gin and kumquat. Met some more interesting people and tasted a few of the other options on the list. I really liked this place and Amanjot is the perfect host.
It was only a brief visit but much enjoyed, Mr Pope, and thanks for introductions to:
Did I forget anyone?