Located just a few minutes walk from New Street Station, the interior of Adam's is impressive: modern, light and chic. The cooking is pretty much the same. After eight courses, snacks and bread we were pleasantly full rather than uncomfortably bloated. As we had plans later in the evening we chose a half-bottle of wine to accompany our tasting menu rather than either of the two wine pairings. Then we settled down to enjoy the show.
The three snacks that preceded the menu proper ranged from good (tuna sashimi rolled in sesame seeds), to great (beetroot meringue with goats cheese cream), to "I actually wouldn't mind if the entire tasting menu was just eight courses of these," (braised beef croquette with crispy onion). The croquette was fantastic: rich, succulent beef encased in a crunchy coating with slivers of crispy onion adorning the top. Warm sourdough bread was served with salty butter and soft, whipped pork fat (nicer than it sounds), before it was on to the main event.
The savoury courses of the tasting menu were a good mix of land and sea. Smoked eel in a cold tomato gaspacho was followed by a baked jersey royal, complete with crunchy potato skin. Next up was one of the real knockout courses: a slab of flaky monkfish atop which sat blobs of sweet champagne jelly. Two meaty mussels, some pleasantly crunchy samphire and a smattering of caviar rounded off a magnificent piece of cooking.
Meat followed fish followed meat. Squidgy beef tartare with slices of raw mushroom (which I don't normally like but which worked well here); masala sea trout with spicy, salty skin, sauce and gnocchi flavoured with coriander; then another one of the standout dishes. Tender breast of guinea fowl, flavoursome thigh of the same gamey bird, crispy skin and smoky potato mash as smooth as a silken handkerchief. The savoury section finished on a real high.
So to desserts. First up a dome of orange blossom mousse on top of a thin, crunchy ginger crumb. This was served with an excellent rhubarb sorbet, tangy cubes of the same fruit and a white wine jelly.
And to finish off a mascarpone millfoy......millefouille......*Googles spelling*...millefeuille. All crispy pastry and creamy topping and shards of honeycomb and chocolate. Alongside it was creamy caramel sauce and cold praline icecream. An impressive end to a wonderful meal.
Service was friendly and slick throughout. Indeed when a lady sitting at a nearby table dropped her spectacles her waiter was a blur of movement to pick them back up. Pricing was perhaps a little more London than Birmingham but the quality of the food certainly warranted the cost. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Adam's and we'd definitely go back for more.