Ten months ago I moved to Paris after living in Sevilla, Spain for five months. I left behind a beautiful culture of which the food was my favourite part. Six weeks ago I moved back to Birmingham and five weeks ago the new Grand Central shopping centre/train station opened after several years of construction. In this new restaurant and shopping complex there is a branch of the fabulous Tapas Revolution, a Spanish restaurant established by renowned Spanish chef Omar Allibhoy with only four branches, of which three are in London.
When the new tapas bar opened in Grand Central, my Spanish coursemates and I knew we had to pay it a visit, and at the end of our final (eek!) Freshers’ Week we went for a semi-reunion meal to try out the food and reminisce about our time away.
It’s situated on the balcony of the new Grand Central in Birmingham, on the corner closest to the old entrance to the Pallasades shopping centre, so it’s super easy to find and in a really good location. Appearance-wise, the restaurant is very attractive and has some authentic Spanish features, including the wonderfully patterned beer taps.
The staff are all super friendly and are almost all Spanish except for the odd waiter here and there, which my friends and I really liked because it meant we could practice a little bit of Spanish with them! The restaurant was busy, but we were able to order drinks while we waited and were seated within 20 minutes. Not bad for a Friday lunchtime without a reservation!
We had already decided that we were going to share a large selection of tapas, and set about deciding on our order from the expansive (but not too big) menu of meat, fish and vegetable/vegetarian tapas. There are also larger dishes available, but as this place is called Tapas Revolution (and also because tapas are quite possibly the most delicious thing in the world) I highly recommend ordering tapas to share…or not share if that’s the way you like it!
It’s a little hard to recall right now, but we ordered about 10 to share between five of us. Our lunch consisted of: patatas bravas, cubed and fried potatos with a garlic and spicy tomato based sauce which were expectedly delicious but could’ve done with a little bit more sauce; albondigas, meatballs in a delicious tomato sauce which I’m led to believe are a favourite of the restaurant; huevos rotos which are eggs, chorizo and potatoes; croquetas de jamón and croquetas de bacalao, two different types of potato croquettes made with ham or cod; calamares, the ever-popular fried and battered squid rings, chorizo a la sidra, spicy sausage roasted in cider; and finally, pinchos morunos con mojo picón which I had never had before and were some absolutely delicious skewers of marinated beef with a spicy dipping sauce. Almost all of the tapas I had tried before, when I was in Spain, and I have to say that everything was completely authentic, even down to the little terracotta dishes everything was served in!
Because of the way the food is prepared, everything arrived at different times. For some people this is an issue, but we didn’t mind so much as it gave us time to eat each thing as it came, and meant that nothing got cold as it sat on the table. Come to think of it, nothing would have gotten cold sat on the table as it was all so delicious that we ate it all so quickly…
Bellies full, feeling nostalgic and having had our cerveza and tinto de verano (which isn’t on the menu, but we were able to order specially – another gold star in my book) we paid up at a price of around £12 a head including two (alcoholic) drinks each. If that isn’t a good deal I don’t know what is!
All in all, I would definitely recommend Tapas Revolution to anyone who is thinking of going, and everyone who hasn’t already considered it. In the heart of Birmingham and right above the train station, it is convenient, easy to find, and has a great atmosphere with the best staff around.
Alright, I might be a little bit biased, but it really is amazing, and I can’t wait to go back again! (Yes, I’ve already been back once before writing this review. It was just as good the second time round!)
Until next time,