A few weeks ago I went to the food market in Victoria Square and randomly chose which stall to get my lunch from. I ended up at the vegan burger one. I thought I'd try the pulled-pork style Jackfruit Burger. The 'cheese' was a bit strange but the burger itself was ok.
I did the same thing today but the first roll of the virtual dice selected the coffee van so I tried again and ended up with a tray of filled dumplings. They were nice but the best part of the meal was the crunchy chilli sauce which had crushed nuts in it.
I have done a few more Lunchroulette dinners this year which I didn't blog about at the time. In approximately chronological order, they are:
Chicken Fillet Sandwich Meal
The randomly chosen meal type was Burger and I rolled a 10 on the computer generated dice. I picked a route at random and walked towards the city centre, counting the burger places along the way. I ended up at Love Chicken on the High Street. I chose a chicken fillet sandwich meal (I can't remember the exact name for it but it was slightly spicy chicken fillets in a bun).
This was a pub lunch with some collegues from work. I used the random number generator to pick a panel from the menu then an item from the panel. I ended up with the full rack of ribs. Good but huge.
Chicken and Chips
I regularly walk past Big John's take-away but this was the first time I had gone inside. It was nice to get proper chippy style chips instead of the thin french fries which most take-aways do. Two pieces of chicken and a box of chips turned out to be a lot more food than I expected.
I went back to the German Market again and picked a random stall to buy my lunch. This time it was one of the Pretzel stalls. The salami pretzel sounded good so I bought one of those.
The pretzel was pretty much what you expect: soft, chewy and very salty on top. I had change left so I thought I would try a dessert next. The choice of desserts was reasonably wide and included pancakes, sweets, cakes, marshmallows or chocolate coated fruit kebabs. The dice took me to a marshmallow stand.
I chose an orange and a gingerbread one. The marshmallow is softer and stickier than the sort you get in bags, and sits on a small waffle or wafer-like disc.
The German Market is in full swing in Birmingham and I am still using the random number app to choose my lunch.
The dice took me to a schnitzel stand which offered a choice of different meats. I let the dice decide and came away with a chicken schnitzel. I also got some chips to go with it.
I had asked for the mushroom sauce and I think they gave me the curry sauce but it was still good, and went well with the schnitzel.
Half metre sausage
The choice was a bit easier this time. The dice chose the half-metre bratwurst stand so I didn't have any extra choices to make. I didn't let the dice choose my condiments, I added half ketchup and half mustard.
The sausage was fine but the bread was a bit chewy. Although it looks a lot of food, I still felt hungry afterwards.
The German Christmas Market returned to Birmingham last week. We popped out for an inaugural pint or two when it opened but this week I decided to get some food. Instead of using the Wheeldecide website, I used a random number generator app on my phone to choose which of the many food outlets to choose.
I found myself in front of a chalet-style take-away which had a range of different menu items all based around burgers, potatoes and mushrooms. Instead of letting the dice choose how much I ate, I went for the full menu since I didn't want to end up hungry.
The garlic sauce was a bit too strong but the meal itself was good, as was the wheat beer.
A few weeks ago I decided to try somewhere different for lunch. I found a website called wheeldecide.com which can randomly choose from nearby restaurants or take-aways. I decided to use it to choose where to go for lunch.
Week 1: Full Stop Sandwich
This place was a bit of a walk. I didn't know where 'New Town Row' was and had to look it up on a map. When I got there it was almost empty but while I was paying for my sandwich it started to fill up. I chose their 'sandwich of the day' which was pork and stuffing. It came with a very thick gravy and a few pieces of crackling.
Week 2: Tuckers
I walk past this place, in the Minories, fairly regularly. It does sandwiches and hot food. I decided to try the all day breakfast for £5 which had bacon, egg, sausage, black pudding, beans, toast, hash brown and tomatoes. It also came with a cup of tea. It was good value and very filling.
Week 3: Wasabi
I needed to walk to the shops to pick up something I had ordered from PC World so I put the postcode for the High Street into Wheeldecide. It kept coming up with places in the Palisades, which is closed for refurbishment, so I decided to go to Wasabi, in New Street Station, instead.
I had been wanting to go there since it opened. I chose one of their salmon sushi boxes, which came with a couple of spicy chicken skewers.
They have a wide range of sushi and bento boxes, with rice and noodles. I'll have to revisit to try something else.
I do like cakes so I recently decided to look out for any shops or bakeries in Coventry selling nice looking cakes. A few weeks ago I noticed a cake stall on the market with a nice looking display of cupcakes so I decided to try a couple.
I started off with a chocolate orange cupcake and a red velvet one. The latter wasn't as red as some which I've had (probably down to the quality or intensity of the food colouring) but they were both good.
I was back today to try a couple of other cakes. This time I bought a viennese sandwich (filled with cream and half-coated with chocolate) and a carrot cake. Both of these were good too.
I regularly walk past some of the 'street food' stalls in the city centre and sometimes think about trying one of the sausages from the bratwurst stall but until this week I never actually got around to it. I decided to give the half metre bratwurst a go, complete with onions and german mustard. The sausage is so long, only the middle half fits on the bread.
It's pretty good value at £4.50 and the sausage is good quality and tasty. I did notice that they advertised chicken bratwurst on the side of the stall so I'll have to try those next time I'm passing.
I used to write about local eateries and review local restaurants fairly regularly but I haven't done that for a while. There are a few places in Coventry which I mean to try out in the next few weeks, including various shops, restaurants or take-aways. I won't promise that it'll be a weekly thing but I'll try not to leave it too long between reviews.
I'll get the ball rolling with my visit to Love Shake in the West Orchard shopping centre. They do a wide selection of milk shakes (made using chocolate bars), fruit smoothies (made using a mixture of juice and frozen fruit) and locally made ice cream. I chose The Immunizer which is a mixture of equal amounts of strawberry, kiwi and pineapple, topped up with apple juice. then liquidized.
The use of frozen fruit means the fruit keeps its vitamin content but also means you get an ice cold smoothie which you can't drink too quickly without freezing your throat. The fruit flavours come through well and you can taste them all within the mix.
I'll have to pop back to try their ice cream next.
Emma texted me to say she had bought something special for our tea but I wasn't expecting take away sushi. We shared 3 take-away boxes. It was a very nice surprise and the first time I'd had actual slices of sashimi, instead of having small amounts rolled up in sushi.
We drove to McDonalds for a milk shake. We specifically asked for a large Vanilla. When we got home it turned out to be something else altogether. Probably supposed to be chocolate but it was pale coloured, vaguely chocolatey but really not very nice at all.
We had to drive all the way back to get it replaced. The Canley branch does seem to be one of the worst McD's in Britain. It's not the first time we've had problems there.
I was supposed to be meeting Emma and some of her Uni friends tonight - they were going out celebrating the end of their final exams. The plan was for me to take the bus in and join them at Varsity for food and a few drinks before going to the Students Union. Unfortunately Varsity wasn't serving food for some unspecified reason so I was asked if I could go via KFC and pick up a couple of meals and a bucket. Although KFC is on the bus route, I would be stuck waiting for the next bus while holding a rapidly cooling box of chicken bits so I had to drive. Which meant I would be on soft drinks for most of the night
We sat outside Varsity eating our food and drinking jugs of cocktails from the bar. As we were getting towards the end of the meal the manager came out and told us that we shouldn't eat our own food on the premises and we'd have to stand on the pavement if we wanted to continue. As most of us had finished eating, this wasn't a problem. She took away the rubbish we'd generated. (So much fat had come out of the chicken in the bucket that it had dissolved away the cardboard at the bottom. Yum!)
After we had all finished eating we went back inside to buy more drinks. The manager seriously considered not allowing us to be served! Fairly stupid really because the pub was fairly quiet and they probably needed all the custom they could get.
On leaving Varsity we went into the Students Union for the Top Banana night. It was empty when we got there but by the time we left it was really crowded. Probably something to do with most drinks being £1 each. Of course I was driving so was relegated to tap water.
Tonight, both of us fancied chips so we decided to check out the local take-aways. There are quite a few nearby - one we'd been to before was the Spon End Fish Bar, which does chicken kebab meat and chips for £2.50. Last time we were there they'd sold out of chicken so we just had chips, which were still nice. This time we were luckier. The chicken was tikka flavoured and there was lots of it - excellent value.