Spice and all things nice at Umami

Where did July go? Firstly, apologies I’ve not blogged very much the past few weeks. Work life and the radio station have been busier than expected but we’re now back to regular service!


It’s hard to believe Umami has been open in Harborne for (over) a year now. Providing stylish Indian cuisine to the leafy suburb of Harborne, it was set up with a mission to provide authentic, home style cuisine with a touch of class.

Located just off the main high street and opposite the leisure centre, it certainly has an impressive exterior with seating outside to catch a few rays of sun (when available in the UK!).


After taking a seat inside in the nicely styled modern entrance, Wifey and I had a flick through the new menu:

I’m a sucker for typefaces (the geeky side of me coming out!) and the new menu itself was on nice thick glossy stock, with striking photography.

Before heading in for main courses, Wifey and I picked up a couple of non-alcoholic fruit punches and a nibble on a few canapés:

The canapés certainly got our mouths watering. Of particular mention was the spicy and sweet Chatpatta Chilli Prawn. The vegetable samosa was crisp dry, not oily, with a bit of heat offset by a drizzle of raita.

Now into the main part of the restaurant. The decor continues to be modern and striking, complimenting their focus on modern authentic Indian cuisine.

One nice touch was their ‘At Home‘ meal box, adding an extra touch of class to the traditional takeaway by giving a robust container to carry your dishes in rather than the usual plastic carrier or brown paper bag.

Onto the the dishes themselves. We were given a sample of  5 dishes and 2 sides to try from their new menu:

This dishes:

  • Khadhaigoshtkhadda Masala – A Welsh lamb based wok dish  flavoured with coriander and cumin. This had a really nice rich tomato base with a spicy tail, the lamb was well cooked and melted in the mouth, and my fave of the dishes.
  • Chooza Makhani – the classic, famous, butter chicken. Umami’s version being made with pulled chargrilled chicken, and was a lovely example giving a delicious unctuous mouthfeel.
  • Alleppey Fish curry – A a specialty coastal dish from the district of Alleppey in Kerala, made from fish simmered in coconut milk and raw mango. This was Wifey’s fave with rich ‘meaty’ fish chunks which wasn’t swamped by spices, allowing the flavour of the meat to come through.
  • Aloo Palak – Instead of the usual Bombay potatoes, these were Jersey Royals cooked with a green spinach and mustard leaf puree and a tadka of garlic and ginger. The buttery potatoes gave a different aspect to the dish, with the mustard leaves bringing the heat.
  • Dal Taskabajrangi – A yellow lentil dal with cumin, garlic and deggi mirch. This was pleasant and smooth, but could have probably done with a touch more spice for our tastes.

The sides were Naan and Chicken Pulao Rice:

  • This disappeared quickly, light, crispy and very moreish, Wifey was a particularly enamoured.
  • The Chicken Pulao rice had large chunky chicken pieces, though was heavy on the cinnamon for me. Wifey would have preferred slightly smaller pieces to compliment the delicate rice.

All in all, it was a great first visit for us and we’ll definitely return again soon to try more dishes from the new menu.

Disclaimer: For this event, Wifey and I were guests of Umami who provided all food and drinks; this provides no bias to the post. This blog is my own personal opinion and strives to provide an independent view, promoting, enjoying and reviewing the range of exciting food and venues in and around Birmingham.

When: 22/06/2016

Where: Umami, 25 Lordswood Road, Harborne, Birmingham B17 1RP

Who:  Umami