Birmingham is famed for its curries, but more than ever, Indian cuisine in the city is moving more towards fine dining restaurant than humble balti house.
I went along last Friday night with the wonderful Rosina from Rosina’s Passion for Food for a catch up and to see if Praza’s sparkling reputation lived up to its name!
Our table was booked for 7:30 and we were taken to our seats straight away. The restaurant was about half full so it was pleasantly quiet and meant we got plenty of attention from our waitresses.
As we were both driving we decided to go for some non-alcoholic cocktails. There was a good selection with 4 different options, I had a Passionade with cherries, passionfruit, lime and apple juice, while Rosina had a Tropical Kiss with banana, passionfruit, mango puree and pineapple juice. Both of the drinks were presented beautifully and looked like as much care had been put into them as their alcoholic counterparts, which made having a soft drink feel that little bit more special!
We had some poppadoms and chutneys while we were looking through the menu, and there were so many dishes we wanted to try. The Goan fish rolls and the achari paneer tikka both caught my eye, but as I’d never seen duck on an Indian menu before, I went for the duck sheekh kebab.
The minced duck was rich and quite spicy, with a good hit of chilli. It was a big portion for a starter as well. So far so good!
For the mains, Rosina and I both went for the same thing – the ajwaini jhinga – tandoori king prawns in yogurt marinade with a corn and paneer kebab, with shared saffron rice and peshwari naan as sides.
The king prawns were gigantic! We had 4 beautiful, coral pink prawns fresh from the tandoor, with the yoghurt marinade slightly charred on the outside giving them a smokiness. The marinade was creamy with a lovely fragrant flavour from the ajwain, not dissimilar to cumin.
The paneer kebab was really different too, with the salty paneer slightly gooey in the middle wrapped in a crispy corn pancake.
In all honesty, we probably didn’t need rice and naan on the side, as we didn’t finish much of the rice, but the peshwari naan was delicious, stuffed full of coconut and raisins with an almost cakey consistency to the bread.
I was too full for a dessert so just had a coffee while Rosina had some ice cream.
We were well looked after by all of the staff at Praza, even the manager came to say hello and make sure we’d enjoyed our meals, and I’m happy to report that we most certainly did! I’d like to come back to try some more of their dishes and most definitely to try the famed cocktail menu.
My meal at Praza was complimentary, many thanks to Nishat, Prashant and the team. As always, all opinions remain my own and I was under no obligation to provide a positive review.