The Keg and Grill (formerly known as The Gough Arms) is situated in Birmingham City centre, it is not hard to find, if you are looking to go to for food whilst out shopping, without having to leave the city itself, It is a mere 15 minute walk away from Malmaison/ Mailbox and is situated on Upper Gough Street.
Appearance & Entry:
As we approach the Keg and Grill the one thing that takes us back is how quite the area is, considering we are in B1, and still within the city centre, parking outside the pub is plentiful, well it is on this occasion. Parking is not an issue in and around the pub; you are only ever 1 or 2 mins away from a good parking place.
From the outside the pub looks very clean and bright, the lights outside are on an inside is well lit too, and you get a very warm and welcoming feel.
We are surprised when we walk in, the pub has recently been refurbished yet, it still feels and looks like an old school pub, carpet floors, big booths, it is very warm and welcoming, just very different from the same old new modern family pubs we have been going to, nice throw back, it is good to see that the original look of the pub has not changed much.
Upon entering the Keg and Grill, you find yourself straightaway at the bar, this takes away any opportunity to check out the rest of the room, but sometimes that is a good thing, all the normal drinks are on offer that you would expect, but in addition to those we have a good offering of real ales and lagers, this is a refreshing change from the standard fair that is offered up, looking around the room, people seem to be enjoying various different drinks and it seems as the ales here are quite popular.
We ordered a good variety of drinks, and they all tasted fresh and clean, great pints here! That cannot always be said of all City Centre pubs
OK, we order our food and take a seat, there are a few people in, and the atmosphere is very laid back and cool, we feel welcomed and the staff are very helpful when talking through the ales on offer and food dishes to try, we are informed that the food will be approx 25 mins. We ask for it all to be served together, as we were asked if we wanted our grill first. The food arrives in 28 mins.
Nothing turns heads in a pub like the look and sound of a sizzler, and this certainly did turn heads, it seemed louder than normal, and looked fantastic, the first thing that hit us was the variation on the old chicken tikka, we have a minted, green option, very similar to the Hen and Chickens in Constitution Hill.
The green tikka is awesome, the flavour is strong, and the quality of the meat is very very impressive, we are all falling in love with these, we are tempted to order some to take out, which highlights how much we are impressed with these.
The red tikka is impressive, cooked well, spiced well and very fresh, the way in which it is marinated means you literally can see the flavours slide into the meat as you cut it, very impressive.
The shish, wings and Lamb chops are all cooked well, they have a real fresh feel to them, plenty of meat well cooked, and the onions, lol, love our onions, and these are perfect, all the juices have drowned the onions which makes them absolutely stunning, this grill has exceeded all our expectations, this is good and the fact that we order some to take out is testimony to how good this is.
Chicken Tikka Masala: This was recommended to us, unfortunately after such a good grill expectations are really high, and this though being a solid curry, fails to live up expectations, flavours are good, the chunks are a bit to big which makes it messy to eat, it tastes ok, but nothing stand out for us.
Lamb Curry: the meat is cooked well, and the amount on offer is impressive, but, like the chicken curry dish, this was a good dish, but with no real magic. We do not know if our taste buds are still suffering from some kind of high after the grill as we seem to have lost the spark with these curries.
The Keg and Grill is a warm and welcoming venue, the staff are friendly and helpful, but here is a hint of you plan to go, book! Ring early and reserve a space as this place got busier and busier as the evening went on, and it did become awkward as people were eyeing our seats to sit and eat, book and then go, especially if it is later in the day.
The place is clean and fresh, it is not the sexiest of pubs and does not have that “Fake Punch Tavern” feel which is great change for us, we like our pubs to have character and not all look alike. The crowd is mixed; it is not mainly lads but more groups and couples.
The mixed grill has to be on a par with some of the best grills we have had, everything was impressive about it, in no way greasy, the quality of the meat was impressive and the portion sizes were pretty damn impressive too, loved this grill.
The Curries on the other hand, they were solid dishes, but just lacked a bit of magic, these were not bad, they ticked a lot of boxes, but if you are going for a curry and not a grill, then bare this in mind.
The Keg and Grill is not talked about by lots of people, but after this visit, we hope that changes, really impressed with this place and we will be back 100%. Added to the list of grill places as we have stored in our sat navs.
Check out where the Keg and Grill sits in our Desi Grills League Table