My Best Friend is off to Australia, not moving just going on holiday for a month (Lucky B***h) so we decided on some farewell drinks – I know she’s not going away permanently but we see each other all the time so 4 weeks is a long time apart for us, plus any excuse for a few Friday evening cocktails. This week’s destination: The Edgbaston Boutique Hotel on Highfield Road. After going to the Highfield last week for a Sunday Roast I decided that I wanted to explore the other places in Edgbaston with The Edgbaston Boutique being top on my list.
It has the 1920s, Great Gatsby décor down to a T with extravagant chandeliers, a luxurious black and gold colour scheme and some accompanying jazz music in the background to really give the feel of being in a classy 1920s downtown bar in New York rather than Birmingham on a wet and windy Friday evening. Of course, for such a classy setting I had to wear my sparkly shoes (with a bag to match now) which truly shone in the dark lighting.
On arrival, we were given a taster aperitif, a gin and tea infused drink, which was very refreshing and very welcomed by me. Now as you know I love a good cocktail so when presented with a drinks list with such a wonderful array of cocktails my eyes sparkled, almost as much as my shoes. One thing I hate when going out for drinks, especially cocktails, is choosing something that you don’t like – it’s a waste of money and a waste of alcohol – but at the same time I love to try new flavours, infusions and I’m always intrigued by unusual ingredients so as you can imagine it was a pretty hard choice trying to pick something from an extensive and exciting menu. At the Edgbaston, the staff were so friendly and were extremely knowledgeable on all the cocktails on offer, listening to what my preferences were and suggesting cocktails that met these or had ingredients similar to what I’ve liked before. I tried 3 different cocktails, The Great Gatsby (champagne based), A Dashboard Hula Girl (vodka based) both served in a martini glass and An Invincible Summer(gin based) served tall, with the vodka based (surprise surprise) being my favourite. The presentation of the drinks was beautiful (very Instagram worthy) with the Hula Girl cocktail having ‘Aloha’ sprinkled on touch just to give it that added panache. All cleverly crafted, blended well and leaving you wanting more.
As I said before, the waiting staff were incredible, very friendly, and very attentive, it was the little things they did like frequently topping our water up, asking how we found our drinks and offering suggestions that really make the difference between a good bar and a great bar. Table service also makes a refreshing change to trying to hustle your way to the bar and then to only find out that they can’t do a ‘Mojito’ because they’ve ran out of mint. It makes your evening extra special with an added sophistication, making me feel like Carry Bradshaw in Sex & the City.
Whilst the Edgbaston is great for a few drinks, what is most probably known for is its Afternoon Tea where they give a British tradition a luxurious and mystic twist with smoke and magic (aka dry ice and water). I haven’t been here for Afternoon tea but after my lovely Friday evening here I dare say it won’t be long before I’ll be booking myself in, maybe as a welcome home for my friend?
Overall, the Edgbaston Boutique was faultless and it’s going right on my top 5 of favourite places for cocktails in the city, glamourous setting, fantastic service and amazingly delicious cocktails, and not extortionate (cocktails range from 9 – 13 pound) what’s not to love!? The hotel itself is only small as are the cocktail lounges so it is definitely worth booking to avoid disappointment, even if you’re only going for drinks.