The other week my sister and I were invited down to the opening of Birmingham’s latest craft pub on Temple Street. The Head of Steam are slowly working the way from the north down the country with their chain of craft pubs and have now reached Birmingham.
We went during the soft launch of Head of Steam to try out a few things. So I think first thing’s first, this isn’t an account of the service you receive. There was obviously staff training going on during the evening we were there. An extensive drinks menu is on offer and some staff were still getting their head around it. But I will say, Dr W and I have been back for drinks since and the bar is a lot more smooth running.
With a super industrial feel, I felt like I’d been transported back to the north the moment I stepped in. The decor is metal and industrial, but the warm colours make it homely. It’s decor is more enticing to enter rather than not welcoming. When I took him the other weekend, Dr W agreed with me about feeling like we’d been transported back to the north!
Drinks and Nibbles
We started off with a couple of drinks, because it was a warm day neither of us fancied beer. Now I know, Head of Steam is all about beer, but they do have an extensive drinks menu with some lovely gins and cocktails listed too. My sister went with the Apple Blossom, a cocktail of Tanqueray Gin, elderflower cordial, apple and lime juice, which is then shaken and served over ice. It was super refreshing! I decided on my current favourite gin Irish Gunpowder Gin with Fentimans Tonic. A lovely refreshing gin made using green tea in the distillation process, it’s really a very summery gin!
To start our night we picked three of the ‘light bites’ from the Head of Steam’s extensive food menu. Now I must say we had them as normal size portions, but they do a sharing platter with beer that you can order 3 and a beer for a fixed price. They are slightly smaller this way, but the perfect sharing bar snack! We picked the Persian Chicken, which for me could’ve done with a little more bread for the amount of chicken. The Mini Paprika Chorizo, wonderfully spiced and moreish. Lastly the Tempura Vegetables, these were very naughty, they didn’t taste of veg at all (meaning my sister actually ate her veggies for once!)
Next up we tried a couple more summery drinks. Me going with Masons Yorkshire Tea Gin and Fentimans Tonic and my sister the Long Island Iced Tea. My only gripe here was that they put lime with the Yorkshire Tea Gin, personally for me lemon goes much better. Lime masks the taste of the gin I find, but that was a minor niggle and more personal taste! My sister really enjoyed her Long Island Iced Tea, she said it was appropriately boozy!
Obviously to soak up the drinks more food was required, the Head of Steam food menu is definitely a pub grub affair. From pies, to pizza and burgers, there’s something for everyone and dietary requirements are catered for but just ask at the bar if you need any more advice. For our mains I went with the Fish and Chips. A mighty portion I thought, with lovely chips. Wasn’t a huge fan of the tartare sauce, but it was a warm evening and it was super gloopy. I much prefer a chunkier tartare sauce! Other than that, the fish was perfectly cooked and the batter was not overly oily. My sister went with the BBQ Pulled Pork Pizza, which was wonderfully cooked and had loads of cheese. Her comment was that there wasn’t as much pulled pork as she’d have liked, but it was tasty all the same.
Dessert and Overall
Now whilst I was super full, my sister decided on a dessert. Going with the Butterscotch Profiteroles, which was a rather large serving. Sadly the cream was a bit frozen inside the profiteroles, so I think we’d give dessert a miss next time and order another one of their cocktails instead! Overall Head of Steam has some little things to iron out, but it is genuinely a nice pub to spend time in and you won’t be short of choice – there’ll be no complaints with large groups either as there’s a drink for everyone!
Have you checked out a Head of Steam pub yet? (They have loads across the country!) Would you give them a go? Let me know in the comments,
P.S. We were invited down to the Head of Steam in Birmingham to check out the food and drink ahead of opening. All words, photos and opinions are my own.
P.P.S. The Head of Steam Birmingham is located at Somerset House, 36 Temple St, Birmingham B2 5DP. To find your local Head of Steam click here.