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Living, Travel

48 Hours in Birmingham

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Jack Rayner
“Our second city is home some of the country’s most ambitious and innovative restaurateurs, artists, musicians, event curators, chefs and performers – here’s how to spend a Brummie weekend break in style”
48 Hours in Birmingham Skyline
Birmingham Skyline

Few UK cities are going through as much of a creative renaissance as Birmingham. Our second city is home some of the country’s most ambitious and innovative restaurateurs, artists, musicians, event curators, chefs and performers – here’s how to spend a Brummie weekend break in style.

TO EAT

Carter’s of Moseley

Opening his solo venture in 2010 in the Victorian south Birmingham suburb of Moseley, chef Brad Carter is renowned for daring and well-informed cooking. Choose from four, six or eight courses on their evening menu, and prepare for some unfamiliar – but faultlessly delicious – ingredient combinations; one dish features yoghurt, sea buckthorn and wood ants.

Digbeth Dining Club

A weekend essential for locals, students and visitors alike, Digbeth Dining Club hosts an electic selection of street food vendors from Birmingham and beyond, every Thursday, Friday and Saturday. A rotating selection of cuisines and vendors, ranging from Brazilian barbecue and tacos to mezze and salt fish fritters, is accompanied by regular music guests.

Byzantium

A tapas joint less ordinary, Byzantium serve small plates with inspiration drawn from across the Mediterranean. Ottoman, Levantine, Italian, Spanish and Maghreb food cultures are all here – try pan-fried chicken livers in sherry and cream sauce, sea bass with pistachio pesto or halloumi saganaki.

TO DO

Ikon Slow Boat

A converted narrow boat, ‘Slow Boat’ is a unique floating space for local communities and artists to make and experience art in a stimulating and creative environment. Events are curated by the Brindleyplace-located Ikon Gallery, which has been a hub of everything artistic in Birmingham since 1965.

The Electric Cinema

This classic art-deco cinema has been running for over a century, showing its first silent film in 1909. Sofas, a licensed bar and even waiter service – leave the sticky, unpleasant multiplexes behind and choose from both large, international titles and more niche, independent films.

Royal Ballet

One of the three major ballet companies in the UK, Birmingham Royal Ballet never disappoints. Across October, you can catch Ferdinand Hérold and Frederick Ashton’s classical-comedy ‘La Fille Mal Gardée’, and dramatic mixed bill ballet ‘Fire & Fury’.

Hare & Hounds

On Kings Heath’s high street, the Hare & Hounds is a true haven of live music and one of the country’s leading venues. A ludicrously eclectic bill of bands, performers and DJs await you almost every night at this PRS Music Heritage-commemorated pub/club/event space.

RECOMMENDED

Wed 16 Jan 2019

Tom Zinovieff  

Bespoke Furniture Maker

Bespoke furniture maker Tom Zinovieff exudes that gleeful tranquillity of someone who quite genuinely loves what they do. Furniture making runs in his family. His family has managed a local woodland for many years and after completing his training he moved into his father’s old workshop ready to carry on the trade for another generation. We visited him there on a gloriously sunny afternoon to learn more.  

Thu 14 Feb 2019

When it comes to matters of the heart, romance is very much alive and kicking in the UK, with three quarters of Brits admitting to being self-confessed ‘romantics.' Research by norma&dorothy

Wed 13 Feb 2019

With the winter season fully underway, below are some of the most beautiful, snowy destinations to visit in the USA in 2019. All destinations can be visited on the Ikon Pass, the new standard

Tue 5 Feb 2019

The American Dream:

Coming soon to a Motorway near You

The quality of ingredients matched with the brand’s personality at such reasonable prices is a triple threat that is to provide a welcome alternative to your standard gut-destroying fast food options. In all, Mollie’s does exactly what it needs to for the one-time customer and is full of enough quirks and comforts to have travellers reroute to include it. I’m told that other sites are already in the pipeline, so watch out – the American dream is coming soon to a motorway near you.