Birmingham · UK

Out and about in Brum: August 2016 (Part 2)

You can read what A Brummie Home and Abroad got up to in the first part of August here!

20/8/2016 & 21/8/2016:  It’s an unusually quiet weekend for me; Mr Fletche however is out and about on an IgersBirmingham summer social event at The Button Factory.  They’ve booked out the upstairs space, and from the occasional odd Instagram Story posted, I can tell there’s lots of drinking going on.  Hence Mr Fletche missing the last train (by about two hours) and pleading with me for a lift sometime early Sunday morning.  Mr Fletche promises to make it up to me on Sunday, and we head out late afternoon for a Sunday roast.

After our Harborne disappointment in May, we head instead to Moseley.  I drive as Mr Fletche still thinks he has a considerable amount of last night’s alcohol in his system.  Only to find The Fighting Cocks stops serving its Sunday roast at 6pm.  It is 6:05pm.  I know the Dark Horse does a Sunday roast, so we retrace our steps.  They stop serving their Sunday roast at 5pm.  Grrrr.  How hard is it to get a Sunday roast after 6pm?  At this point we just settle for Dark Horse’s regular menu – yummy as ever but not a Yorkshire pudding or roast potato in sight.

Dark Horse Sunday Roast
The Dark Horse Sunday Roast. It wasn’t to be. Photo from Independent Birmingham website

And then to top it all, a charming woman in a black KA reverses into my car in the car park.  No damage done to my car – plenty to hers – but she didn’t want to hang around to chat or exchange insurance details.  Possibly because a) she was reversing at around 30mph, b) she was on her phone; and c) she may have had a teensy weensy little bit too much to drink.  Unless her eyes usually roll around in her head like that and her perfume is 50% proof.

IgersBirmingham

The Button Factory

The Dark Horse

Digbeth Dining Club
Its always busy at a Digbeth Dining Club street closure…

26/8/2016-28/8/2016: It’s the final weekend in August and it’s a Bank Holiday! We decide to help the birthday boys of Digbeth celebrate, popping in to the 648 year old Old Crown, followed by a trip to the 644 year younger Digbeth Dining Club.  It’s the first time we’ve been to a DDC street closure where its not pouring with rain – and everyone has come out to play.  We therefore make our first selections based purely on who has the shortest queue.  This is La Grande Viande, and later on Homemade Pizza.  Short queues do not denote a lack of quality by any means.  The queue for the bars though are unavoidable.  Mr Fletche queues inside for 25 minutes whilst I spend a similar amount in the cocktail queue outside.  I do double up though with a Tequila Sunrise and a Whiskey Sour, so in effect I’ve queued for 12 and a half minutes for each.

We’re not willing to waste another 25 mins of our life in a bar queue, so we head out of DDC and over to Mockingbird in the Custard Factory.  We cast a misty-eyed glance at the now vacant Alfie Birds.  It’s our first time at the Mockingbird; the DJ is playing Erasure’s “A Little Respect” when we walk in, which always helps me warm to a place.  Mr Fletche is slightly disconcerted when his first two beer choices are unavailable, but is finally happy with his bottle of Goose Island.  We tear ourselves away from the excellent music selection, intending to revisit the Old Crown before getting our bus home.  But our head is turned by the inviting frontage of Clink, a tiny craft beer bottle shop and bar.  Mr Fletche gazes around as if he’s in some sort of beer heaven – not since our trip to Brussels last year have we seen so many different cans and bottles in one store. We have one for the road here, sensibly deciding to get to our bus stop rather than sampling any more of their wares.Capture

The Old Crown

Digbeth Dining Club

Mockingbird Theatre and Bar

Clink

 

After a well-deserved alcohol free Saturday night, we head back into town on Bank Holiday Sunday.  Mr Fletche wants to capture some pictures around Eastside, so we head that way.  I try out the variously shaped benches at the front of Millennium Point.

Millennium Point Eastside Birmingham
Wouldn’t fancy cleaning all those windows… photo by CPF Photography

We grab a drink at The Woodman and sit outside watching the kiddies playing in the fountain, until it starts to rain so we dash inside.  It’s only a passing shower though, and it’s only a short dash to The Eagle and Tun, our next destination.  Anyone familiar with UB40’s “Red Red Wine” video will recognise this Victorian pub with its tiled walls.  It only re-opened in December 2015, but has retained its traditional interior, albeit now with a cocktail menu and authentic curries served along with a handful of real ales.  We don’t stop for a curry though, but we do head for that home of cheap and cheerful food – Wetherspoons – for a quick snack.

We (I) have the urge for something sweet to follow, and I know Tilt always has cake, so that’s our final port of call.  I’m tempted by a beer with Mango in it (I like a fruity beer) and Mr Fletche goes for the Toxteth IPA.  It would be rude to come to Tilt and not give it all my pound coins by way of the pinball machine selection.  I do somehow make it into the Top 4 Scores of the day on The Hobbit machine…it is only later that I consider that only three people may have played it that day.Capture

The Woodman

The Eagle & Tun

Tilt

 

And so to catch the train.  Except we forget that – of course – no-one needs to travel from Birmingham after 6:30 on a Sunday.  Staring angrily at the timetable at Snow Hill is not going to get us any closer to home, so it’s a trek all the way across town to our bus stop. As luck would have it, there’s a No 37 at the bus stop, and we gratefully give the driver all the money that we haven’t fed into Tilt’s pinball machines.  Booo to London Midland, Hurrah to National Express…

What can A Brummie Home and Abroad get up to in September?  There’s Moseley Folk Festival, a week in Tenerife,  a birthday to celebrate – oooh, and a new job too!

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