Bodega Birmingham was probably the first South American restaurant and cocktail bar in Birmingham. It’s long been one of my go-to places for great food, casual dining and impeccable cocktails. They invited me there last week to try out some of the new dishes on their menu, with fellow bloggers Nutella Tasha, Caramel Latte Kiss, Grapevine Brum, Winepress Girl and Positive Fridays.
We headed down to the Sugarloaf Bar (downstairs from the main restaurant) and, as always with Bitters and Twisted events, we were greeted with a cocktail: a blueberry and elderflower Margarita.
A sweet and floral take on the Margarita, but still with a refreshing tequila hit, it’s no surprise this is a bestseller behind the bar. After a short intro from marketing manager Vicky, food proceedings kicked off with nachos.
I’ll put myself on the line here and say that I think these are the best nachos in Birmingham. Made fresh from flour tortillas, seasoned with a hint of spice, smothered in cheese and jalapenos and served with fresh salsa, guacamole and sour cream on the side, so you can personalise each bite and they never go soggy. These were always going to be a winner!
Next up we got some of Bodega’s famous sweet potato fries. The first time I ever ate sweet potato fries was at Bodega, and it started an ongoing love affair. These are still as good now as they were that first time. We also got some spicy chipotle slaw which is lovely, loads of crunchy veg with a spicy chipotle mayo, and even more chipotle mayo to dunk the fries into.
Lovely as these were, they were just a warm up for the main event, Bodega’s new tacos and burritos. We got to try their three new taco varieties, veggie, mole chicken and Dr Pepper pulled pork.
First up I tried the mole chicken, which had a really good spicy flavour, juicy chicken, crunchy salad and soft, warm wraps.
Our resident dairy-free food expert Nutella Tasha got stuck into the veggie tacos, which she said were really tasty and had great texture from the roasted vegetables.
Next up were the Dr Pepper pulled pork tacos. I’d heard of cooking ham in cola before, but never cooking pork in Dr Pepper. I was skeptical at first about whether the flavour would come through, but believe it or not, it did subtly! It didn’t taste exactly like Dr Pepper, but you could definitely taste some of the sweetness and spices from the drink. I enjoyed these a lot!
Burritos were up next, loaded with meat, beans, dirty rice and oodles of melty cheese. The dirty rice really made these for me, giving it a spicy kick that I really loved!
We had a jug of Prosecco Sangria to wash everything down which was light a refreshing with a touch of sparkle from the Prosecco.
Finally we got to test out the plantain salad, which had loads of fresh veggies and fried plantain. The plantain was quite firm, and to be honest I prefer mine to be softer and more caramelised, but if I’m really honest, I’m much more likely to order a burrito than a salad, but that’s just me!
As our parting gift, we got to try out something unique to Bodega: a mezcal gin and tonic. The mezcal is made in the normal way, then infused with gin botanicals.
At Bodega, it’s served with tonic water and garnished with lemongrass. It’s a real sipping drink, perfect for after dinner, that actually reminded me more of a peaty whisky than a gin, though the citrussy bitterness of the gin botanicals started to come out towards the end of the drink.
I had a great time at Bodega and really enjoyed the food and the drinks. My pick of the night would have to be the Dr Pepper pulled pork tacos and the blueberry and elderflower Margarita.
Want to try them yourself? Book your table here.
Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest of Bodega, so my food and drinks were complimentary, thanks to the team there. I was under no obligation to provide a positive review and all opinions remain my own, as always.