EXPIRED! Get a Fargo’s Special KGB Deal – 2 people eat for £15 including starter, main and a drink!

Salaams and welcome back to the Halal Blogosphere.

The KGB has struck again, no its not our favourite Russian spy agency but the voucher people from KGB Deals. This time they have teamed up with Fargo’s Food Factory which is a favourite of our’s at the Halal Food Review to offer a super deal.

So if you want a starter and a mains plus a drink for two people for only £15, yes we said only£15 then grab yourself a voucher deal at KGB. The voucher lets you choose any starter or main so you could be tucking into two steaks, brick burgers, pizzas, curries or stir fry’s to your hearts content.

Show me the deal I hear you cry. Hit the link, if the offer doesn’t appear on the front page just click on the All Deals Tab and you will see it, KGB tend to rotate their deals and link pages! Until the next time happy eating!

Fargo’s KGB Deal Offer

The offer runs out in 6 days so you need to book before the 8th May, vouchers however can be used until July 9th

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Fargo’s Food Factory Review – Birmingham

Salaams and welcome back to the Halal Blogosphere

A week doesn’t seem to go by at the moment without a new restaurant opening up in Birmingham, since October last year we’ve seen a whole host of new restaurants opening offering everything from opulent Mughal cuisine to All you can eat buffets to new steakhouses. Recently we’ve seen a flurry of American style diners with the opening of Tinseltown, Rock 66 and Fargo’s Food Factory all in a matter of weeks.

We’ve been waiting rather impatiently for Fargo and his team to lift the shutters on their food factory ever since we first got news that the old Punjab Paradise was closing down. As much as we love the Balti Triangle we’ve been crying out for some different types of restaurant to open in the city’s most famous food district. Fargo’s as you’ve probably guessed is located at the top end of Ladypool Road and joins Ulfat’s Grill, Adil’s,  Lahore Buffet and the much loved Khan’s Fish Bar to create a varied dining offer that further extends the appeal of Ladypool Road as a dining destination of choice for so many halal foodies.

Fargo’s has an interesting internal configuration, as you enter the restaurant you see the counter half way up the restaurant and then there is a further dining area stretching past the counter. We sat in the dining area directly opposite the counter which has traditional American style booths. It did take a bit of adjusting to get our bearings but once seated we instantly felt the warmth of the restaurant and its great to have access to heating on a cold February evening. There seems to be the odd remnant of the old Punjab Paradise with the decorated archways but everything else definitely has the Fargo’s factor. One of the things I do like is a restaurant that develops a unique and different style of branding and I have to say I do love the Fargo’s concept with the storyboard, the narrative and the cartoon characters. I was eating with the family and the kids simply adored some of the imagery on the walls and it makes for a really nice environment for young kids with plenty of space to run around in.

The menu at Fargo’s is different and basically offers diners five food options each themed around one of the Fargo characters so you have a choice from a range of burgers, grilled options, stir fry, curry and pizza options. There is also a themed dessert menu and a kids selection. The menu is varied without being over powering, the choices are sensible and the only thing that I found missing was a good fish option in the grill section as I am definitely partial to a good piece of Salmon!

The service at Fargo’s was good, the staff were friendly and attentive without being overbearing. Once you place your order you also get an estimate from the waiter of how long your food will take which is a nice touch and helps to manage expectations especially amongst impatient diners. We were told our food will take about 30 minutes and it came to the table after around 20 minutes which was great. The staff were also really good with the kids and as a parent that’s a big plus for me. Coupled with a kids menu that works for me. When you’re eating out with young children you’re always a bit more conscious as to how the kids will behave as well as the reaction of other diners and restaurant staff, we had none of these worries at Fargo’s. If I could offer one recommendation to the team at Fargo’s it would be to include a juice or diluted drink with the kid’s meals. (the team at Fargo’s have heard our request and kids meals now come with diluted drinks)

So what about the food I hear you cry!

Based on my Facebook research and talking to friends who had eaten at Fargo’s a day earlier I had no hesitation in ordering the Brick Burger which offers diners the option to simply double up on their burger choice and mix and match their combination. After my beefburger experience last week I decided to stick to what I love which was the lamb and chargrilled chicken which fused the Grizzler and the Colonel Burger options. Doubling up is a great option and really good value for money for an extra £1.50. The wife decided to try something different and opted for the Vegetable Chow Mein with the option of added chicken from the Stir Fry Menu.

The Brick Burger hit the spot and the flavours of the Chargrilled Chicken and the Spicy Lamb patty really complimented each other and were perfectly finished off with the chilli relish. For £6.95 you can’t really go wrong for a premium burger of this quality and the standard was definitely on a par with what we’ve enjoyed at the Chicago Burger Company, I was tempted to go with the full loaded fries but stuck with the safe option of chunky chips! The stir fry was a generous portion with a great fusions of flavours. I did have my doubts about offering four very different options on a menu but its great to actually be able to go to one restaurant and order from different and distinct options. It gives you more reason to come back and try something different.

From the dessert menu we opted for the Cookie and Cream Sundae and the Mango Milkshake. The Cookie and Cream sundae split opinion on the table, the kids and I enjoyed it whilst the wife was in two minds about it though she did have her heart set on the Chocolate Cake and Ice Cream only to be vetoed by me! The one thing I did agree with though was that more thought could have gone into the presentation. Desserts should be as pleasing on the eye as they are on the the tastebuds. It delivered on the latter but could do more on the former! The mango milkshake was the only real let down for me during the evening, I normally opt for a mango shake from any milkshake menu as quite often its the most difficult to get right in terms of that unique balance of flavour and the milkshake for me didn’t really capture that mango essence!

Price wise Fargo’s is a hit for me, the portions are generous, the prices are competitive and there is a really good selection both in terms of food but also in terms of drinks. Service as I mentioned earlier was also a hit, staff were friendly and courteous, we were offered free water as a matter of routine and when it came to settling up at the end of the evening we were asked for feedback on the food and our experience which I really appreciated. We did talk about the mango milkshake and it was great to have the team ask why it didn’t work for me and what would make it better  and that they would look to address it in the future. Its a small touch but an important one that separates good service from bad service reminding the customer that they are valued.

So to summarise, Fargo’s is a great addition to the halal dining offer in Birmingham, the food was great, the prices are competitive and service was also spot on. They were also really receptive to my feedback on the milkshake. I’d definitely recommend Fargo’s to Halal Food Review readers and I have a feeling people will try it more than once and mix and match from the different options on the menu. It would be great to see Fargo’s open a bit earlier to offer a lunch option on Fridays and the weekend but maybe that is already in the pipeline, if not its worth thinking about.

Quality of Food – 8
Quality of Service – 8
Quality of Space – 7
Value for Money – 9

Overall score 8

Tinseltown Halal Food Review – Star City, Birmingham

Salaams and welcome back to the Halal Blogosphere.

With the rapid growth of the halal food scene in Birmingham there is only so much food one reviewer can eat! So when we got an email in our inbox telling us that the team at the Musk and Moccasin blog had been updated to include a review of Tinseltown we couldn’t open the link quick enough!

For those of you who don’t follow it, its a great blog with contributions from some really interesting people, share the love and give them a follow and add them to your blogroll. It came on our radar as one of their writers is someone we regularly interact with on Twitter. The review is beautifully written so why duplicate a good thing when Wali Khan has done the job already.

So over to you Wali Khan….

Anyone who knows me personally knows I take my food seriously. I’m not into expensive cuisine but I like a proper meal and one that’s worth its money. On occasion, a nice relatively expensive dinner with friends, at about £30+ per head (OK I haven’t done Michelin Stars yet), isn’t too bad – especially when the food is amazing and the company with friends is even better. I like my local chippy just as much; ideal for when you want a quick bite to eat – the freshly made chips and the donner kebab sizzling away in the polystyrene container… perfection, my mouth is salivating at the thought (even though some would gasp at the thought!).

More recently however, those of us in Birmingham, have experienced a boom in the halal restaurant game. A few years back, Nandos (controversially) announced it is to do halal chicken, and KFC followed soon after. Add to this the myriad indian restaurants, steak houses and other food joints dotted around the city, you soon begin to realise that us Brummies spend quite a lot of our hard-earned cash on food.

Right, onto Tinseltown. Tinseltown is a well established brand that has recently branched out by opening it’s doors to the Birmingham crowd in Star City. It’s an American Diner style restaurant serving anything from steak to burgers and everything in-between. As you approach the restaurant, the decor is quite sleek, modern and grey. Take a few steps inside and you’ll soon see photos of Hollywood stars dotted around the place (hence the name).

As you get shown to your seat, and get told to remember your table number when you order, the waitress (more than probably from an Eastern European country – nothing against this, I actually find it quite nice *wink wink*) will hand you a menu. My friends and I have been twice since the opening and on both occasions, our eyes got hungrier than our stomachs. The menu looks brilliant and the variety of choice is actually amazing. Then you get to the milkshakes section and you can’t help but want one just to see if the hype is true – everyone says Tinseltown’s milkshakes are good, and my God, I’ve so far only tasted the Ferrero Rocher one and it is to die for!

Sadly however that’s where the good news stops. With all that I was expecting, Tinseltown is, in my books, a let down. Yes, I know this may be premature as I’ve already said I’ve been only twice and I certainly haven’t tried all the menu but I don’t think I’ll ever bother. This is why…

So what about the food I hear you cry….. click here to read on!

Until the next time happy eating!

Rock 66 Diner Now Open – Birmingham

Salaams and welcome back to the Halal Blogosphere.

A quick update to let our readers know that the Rock 66 Diner is now open in Birmingham, its an American style diner with some amazing burger and milkshakes options. We wait years for something to happen in Birmingham and before you know it we have Rock 66, Tinseltown and Fargo’s!

Rock 66 is located in Washwood Heath, near the Fox and Goose pub. The full address is 891 Washwood Heath Road, Birmingham, B8 2NA. The telephone number is 0121 785 1234

Even better news alhamdulillah Rock 66 are offering a free meal and a milkshake to the Halal Food Review reader who pledges the highest donation to our Feed the Poor Campaign. The donation to beat to get your free meal and milkshake is £50.

What about the food I hear you cry.

We tried out Rock 66 this past Friday and here is our super quick mini review to get those tastebuds tickled!

Rock 66 offers a super menu that offers something completely different, they offer steaks, grills and some of the most interesting burgers in the Midlands offering you a whole range of different beef, lamb and chicken options with a whole host of different toppings and extras to choose from! I have to say I love the design of their menu it looks slick!

We experienced a good level of customer service, they exchanged one of our meals no questions asked after one of our group fell out with his burger! (not me)

The portion sizes are generous, so be careful when you order, its very easy to order too much and end up like us having eaten so much we left no room for a milkshake or dessert. With over 55 different milkshake combinations that was the ultimate mistake we could have made!

In terms of could do better we felt the fries were very bog standard its aminor quibble but they were completely outshone by the potato wedges which are worth paying the 99p extra for. Also I’d love to see Rock 66 offer free refills on the soda drinks for the full American experience even if they charged a bit extra for their initial drink 🙂

The what I learnt about myself bit

I absolutely hate beefburgers!, Give me lamb or chicken any day. I didn’t really enjoy my burger but that is down to my own poor decision making! I take full blame for that. Next time I will try the Chicken or Lamb options!

We will update the review once we’ve had a chance to try out some of the shakes and desserts!

For more info on Rock 66 visit their website at http://www.rock66.co.uk/

Tinseltown Review, Fargo’s Food Factory and Lahore Karahi Discount Code

Salaams and welcome back to the Halal Blogosphere!

Inshallah everyone is enjoying the wonderful sunshine, Spring has definitely come early and where there is good weather there is always an apetite for good food!

Just a quick update to let readers know we should have a mini Tinseltown Star City review up in the next week or so and we will also be bringing you an exclusive money off voucher for Lahore Karahi the Halal Chinese restaurant.

Also to let readers know Fargo’s Food Factory the new American Diner is now open on the Ladypool Road in Birmingham. The diner is located at the old Punjab Paradise location at the top end of Ladypool Road towards the junction with Church Road and joins Khan’s Fish Bar, Adil’s, Ulfat’s and the Lahore Buffet to create a nice little food quarter past the Brighton Road junction.

Before we do there is still the very big matter of our fundraising campaign. A big thank you to the readers who have donated to the appeal may Allah reward you and accept our duas on your behalf for your generousity. We are still short of our fundraising target by £95.

Inshallah we can hit our target and even exceed it with your help, its not to late to donate and there is no donation too small, every little helps. I know its not the easiest of climates to donate in but there is always someone who needs our help and blessings more. Inshallah with a little help from everyone we can help those who need it most. Please don’t wait for someone else to donate after some donations in the first few days of our appeal the donations have stopped even though our website hits haven’t!

To donate just click on the just giving link in the top left hand corner or read our previous post. You can donate online, by text or send us an email with your offline donation pledge.

Salaams and duas

Chicago Gourmet Burger Company

Salaams and welcome back to the Halal Blogosphere where man and food collide for a fusion of opinion, flavour and social comment.

Last week your Halal Food Reviewer was tipped off to try out the Chicago Gourmet Burger Company which has recently set up operations in Birmingham. The only clue given to its exact location was it was near the Subway outlet adjoining the Matthew Boulton Campus on the east side of the city centre. Its not the easiest place in Birmingham to find and its tucked away in a discrete part of the student quarter on the Eastside. If you can locate the Subway then follow the narrow road around the block and you will stumble upon the diner.

If you’re driving your best bet would be to park in one of the city centre car parks and walk to the diner. Its a short walk from both the Bull Ring and the Priory Square for those who know their Birmingham city centre geography. Their website address is http:/www.thechicagoburger.com it is currently a holding place but hopefully address details will be added soon!

What struck me instantly upon entering was how busy the diner was and I do refer to it as a diner, the decore is fresh, contemporary and modern and the majority of customers seemed to be students from the local college or university campuses. The owners have put some real attention into the whole concept and its easy to see the Chicago Gourmet Burger Company morph into a chain.

The menu is really simple, you have a choice of any number of burgers from the Real Deal to the Milana Classic to the Chicago Tower as well as chicken, fish and vegetarian options. The majority of burgers come in beef or lamb options with the extra option to add a spicy kick to your burger of choice. The burgers are served with some really authentic chips cooked in their jackets with an option of a hot topping ranging from curry sauce and spicy baked beans to vegetables and a spicy lamb fusion topping.

I opted for the Milana Classic Meal going for the lamb option which comes with chips, a hot topping and a bottled soft drink for a very reasonable £4.99, there is also the option to double up on your burger of choice as well as a range of others sides and extras. The CGB Company also offers a range of jacket potatoes, hot drinks and desserts.

The restuarant definitely has a diner / contemporary feel to it and lends itself to its student crowd, the diner closes at 8pm so if you’re on the look out for a late night burger you will probably be out of luck. The service was great, the team seems really professional with the serving team happy to guide you through the various options and introduce the menu to you. The guy who served me threw in an extra side which he recommended in addition to what I ordered, small touches like that can make a big difference and its a really good way to encourage your customers to try different things on the menu.

What about the food I hear you cry!

My meal was spot on, the burger was succulent, full of flavour and I could really taste the lamb. If you’ve had the misfortunate of eating 99p cheeseburgers then this is your road to redemption and recovery. The chips were perfectly cooked and came in a sensible sized portion with customers free to select extra sauces free of charge. I really loved the little touches in terms of presentation. The burger came wrapped in a foil wrapper with the exterior offering a full menu option as well as built in customer feedback form. The chips arrive in a contemporary cardboard serving box and you are also provided with a napkin, fork and lemon hand wipe. Again this is nothing spectacular but it sets the diner out from its competition and definitely places the focus on customer service.

The Chicago Gourmet Burger Company is a great addition to the halal dining experience that is Birmingham, ever since I tried Archies in Manchester I have been looking for a really interesting specialist real burger company to open in Birmingham and Chicago Gourmet Burger Company has stepped in at the right time and delivers a really high quality experience. If I could encourage the company to make any changes it would be to introduce a funky milkshake menu to really complete the menu.

If you’re in Birmingham and looking for a high quality burger than Chicago Gourmet Burger Company needs to be your point of call. The HFR team wishes them the best of success and we wouldn’t be surprised to see the concept and the chain grow. Its a big thumbs up from me!

Quality of Food – 8
Quality of Service – 9
Quality of Space – 9
Prices – 8

Overall rating 8.5 Chicago Gourmet Burget Company has brought a much needed premium halal burger concept to the city!

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