Lasan has been on my to-eat list for some time. With fine dining, it's easy to leave it until you have an 'excuse'- a birthday, an anniversary or so on. But then you never actually get round to it. So, Edd and I booked Lasan on a whim , for the next available Saturday.
Lasan is a modern Indian restaurant which has been in the city for 14 years and has won various awards. Head chef and co-owner Aktar Islam, is a well-known face in the Birmingham culinary scene and has appeared on Great British Menu.
So it's not your standard Saturday night curry and that is reflected in the price, service, presentation and atmosphere. However, the familiar flavours and ideas are there and you won't find the menu a struggle.
The decor was simple but I felt it needs a bit of a refresh- it was looking a little tired.
We ordered a bottle of prosecco for around £28, because what's a non-celebratory meal without fizz? Before our starters arrived we were brought a couple of chaats, containing chickpeas amongst other yummy things. The waitress poured sauce in and advised us to eat it all in one go.
Delicious mouthfull complete, we moved onto the poppadoms. These were incredible, melt-in-the-mouth crunchy pieces of joy. They were served with a mango chutney, a rich tomato sauce and a raita. I would have appreciated some pickles too.
The menu is not huge but there is plenty to choose from and we really struggled. Edd chose quail with a lovely scotch quails egg. The star of the show was the scotch egg- delicate but rich with a perfect runny yolk.
Tandoori prawns are one of my favourite meals in the world so I had to go for those at some point. These were big, juicy prawns which delicious charring and served with green mango avocado and lime. Fantastic presentation on both dishes, with a slight warming heat running through.
Mains were interesting because they had elements of a traditional curry but was set out in a classic European way- meat and a sauce and some veg and so on. So Edd's venison dish and my lamb both came with cuts of meat, a pot of curry and additional sauces.
Edd's vension was perfectly cooked with a wonderfully rich vension curry in the pot.
My herb crusted lamb was served with a rich tomato sauce, fresh, crunchy greens and a lamb curry hiding underneath.
We also ordered mushroom rice which was as good as rich can be and my favourite peshwari naan, which was stuffed with coconut, raisins and honey.
We decided to treat ourselves and go for dessert. Edd had a perfect chocolate fondant.
I had a cardamom rice pudding which was rich and comforting but the star of the show was the poached pear that came with it.
A beautiful meal which did not leave us feeling heavy, tired or too full. Everything was flavoured with a light touch, with little extra details to make the food stand out. The price was not ridiculous either, with three courses, sides and a bottle of fizz coming in at around £120. One for a treat certainly, but not break the bank prices.
Afterwards we skipped down to 40 St Pauls which is just round the corner so of course we had booked in for post-dinner gin and tonics and martinis! We've also started our #Ginspotters cards, where you tick off the gins you've tried and get little prizes along the way.
Lasan, St Paul's Square, Birmingham
Photos by me and Edd.
We paid for everything ourselves and Lasan did not know I would be blogging.