Part of a global, cocktail empire of classes and bars, Gas Street Social comes with pep and rep; But does it have what it takes to come up trumps in Birmingham? I did the only thing I could possibly think of to find out......drank.
If you’re having a stroll along the canal, make sure you pop into Gas Street Social. Proudly taking up the prime Mailbox spot in the old Bar Room Bar space is an independent bar amongst the bigger chain competitors, and we know how I feel about independents.
The venue itself is spacious, simple, and crisp. Large wooden benches and tables with factory-esque style booths and lighting achieve the aim of capturing Birmingham’s history, which we know is rich in industry. It’s warm and welcoming, with nostalgia in the décor. The aptly named venue has the odd nod toward said history of our fine city; complete with a vintage Cadbury’s sign and various postings on the walls detailing what makes Brum great.
The Food and Drink
I approve of the menu here. No pulled pork, no salted caramel, no brioche, no red velvet. What you can get is some cracking "for the table" selections if you’re busy chatting and just want some bits. The ‘Social Plates’ are a bit of a winner, at £16.95 for three, or £26.95 for five. I personally really liked the Arancini balls with wild mushroom & truffle oil, the Social Scotch Egg (black pudding & beer ketchup!), and the Slow Cooked Ox Cheek with bacon, mushroom & bourguignon sauce. Pretty tasty stuff. I’ve also heard that the Chocolate Brownie for pudding is something that you should squeeze in afterward, if you can.
As for the drinks, Gas Street Social is putting up some excellent contenders in Birmingham’s hyper-active cocktail scene. I had an 1888 Rum Old Fashioned (£9.50), which is made with 29 day barrel-aged Brugal rum. If you’re after something a little more refreshing, try a Gas Street Cobbler (£8.00); a wine cocktail with a lemon & apple twist. Fear not if cocktails aren’t your thing either, as there’s a pretty decent craft beer selection, and the option to get wine by the glass, bottle, or meet-in-the-middle-sized carafe.
The Atmosphere and Clientele
As with any bar or restaurant in the Mailbox, you’re open to a wide audience. Gas Street Social does what it says on the tin; creates a comfortable and welcoming atmosphere that has a buzzing vibe which is conducive to socialising with friends. It’s not unusual to see groups of people sat around having a brilliant time, all tucking into various sharing plates and taking advantage of the excellent drinks selection on offer.
Sharing is caring when it comes to Gas Street Social. The ethos of the place is about getting together with friends and winding down after what’s probably been a gruelling day. I’d recommend this place for a quick bite after work, or even as a lunch time spot if you’re after something nicer than fast food. It’s a great place to bring people to show off what Birmingham has to offer.