Situated proudly on the corner of Colmore Row is the new venture from Birmingham’s Lasan Group, Nosh & Quaff. The clever creators of Lasan, Fiesta del Asado and Raja Monkey had high expectations to meet, and they didn’t disappoint.
Tall ceilings, warm lighting, exposed brickwork, high wooden tables, comfy leather booths and industrial lights and fixtures; the venue has been transformed from a historic, cold and empty bank to a place that oozes a lively air of urban-sophistication thanks to copper flecks and newfangled restaurant style. It perfectly complements the surrounding area, which has received a well-needed resuscitation of late for places to go post-work.
The Food and Drink
The menu is simple, but far from basic. No starters here; you just get right down to it. “Affordable luxury” is the aim, and at £20 for a whole lobster, fries, side salad and a lemon sauce, they hit the mark. If you’re more of a meat fiend, you’ve got the rest of the menu, which comprises of The Cheeky Burger (£14), Wings (£12), Ribs (Beef/Pork - £18/£20) or the Big Apple Dog (£13). There’s a whole array of reasonably priced sides, such as Mac ‘n’ Cheese (a bargain at £3.95), sweet potato wedges (£2.50) or a corn on the cob (£2.50). If you’re with a token vegetarian, there’s a veggie burger too!
Lobster was inevitable. I’ll admit it was my second trip to Nosh & Quaff, so I already knew it was good. I love that you get a bib and all the tools to give it a theatre element. I traded half (well, some of) my lobster for half of the burger. It was pink in the middle and cheesy and all the good things you’re after. We split the mac ‘n’ cheese – I would thoroughly recommend this, but do split it, because whilst it’s rather amazing on the taste buds, it’s also really rich. I’ve had the Blooming Onion (£4) before, and it’s one of those things you keep picking at long after you’re stuffed, simply because it tastes good.
The craft beer selection is great. I had a Sierra Nevada stout, which you don’t see too often. There’s some classic American draft beers, served in 1/3 litre measures. I had a Bulleit bourbon at the end, and I have to say it’s all very well priced. If you’re looking for a decent wine, try the Kung Fu Girl Riesling, which is both hard to find and worth the cost.
The Atmosphere and Clientele
Not advised as a first date spot. I ended up with lobster on my face and my plus one got burger in her hair. I’m not kidding. It’s absolutely spot on for a group of lads (actually, hey, let’s not be sexist; there was a group of ladies with their bibs on, chowing down on burgers and ribs when I went). A venue made for big groups, mate-dates, and couples who aren’t in the phase of still trying to pretend to be classy around one another.
What Aktar wanted with Nosh & Quaff is high quality food at reasonable prices, served in a laid back yet upscale venue, and I think he’s achieved it. It’s the best of both worlds; Lobster: Fancy! And lobster with a side of fries and a beer? Even better. The hashtag #letsgetmessy sums it up right. Great quality food, great drinks, served in a non-pretentious atmosphere. Definitely worth a visit.