Thanks, at least in part, to the world-renowned Frankfurt Christmas Market that fills Birmingham City Centre with festive cheer each year, the UK’s second city is just about the best place in Britain to get a bit of Christmas shopping done. It’s also home to some outstanding drinking and dining opportunities that, quite frankly, you’ll have well and truly earned after you’ve braved the cold to buy all those gifts for your friends and family.
Whether it’s a bracing morning coffee to warm your mittened hands on while you meander through the market stalls, or a spot of pre-theatre dining before catching something from the city’s line-up of yuletide entertainment, we’ve got the you covered when it comes to wining and dining in Birmingham city centre this festive season.
Shop ‘til you drop at… Birmingham Bullring
When we think shopping in Birmingham, we immediately think about the Birmingham Bullring. With over 160 shops spanning fashion, food and drink, footwear, health and beauty, home, jewellery and many more, you’re bound to find stocking fillers and presents aplenty.
It’s the perfect spot to kick off a day’s Christmas shopping and it’s also home to some of the biggest and best names in food and drink. Whether it’s a Christmas catch-up, a candlelit dinner for two or a healthy bite to eat with the kids, the Birmingham Bullring has the answer.
Grab a spot of lunch at… Cosy Club
Originally the headquarters of the Birmingham Banking Company, the historic building on Bennett’s Hill is now the handsome home of the Birmingham Cosy Club site. Think breathtaking, original Neo-classical features like Corinthian-style columns, classy wooden wall panelling and decadently detailed high ceilings. Pair all of this with lavish leather Chesterfield club chairs, a scattering of velvet pouffes and a few tasteful pieces of wall-mounted taxidermy and you’ve got a Cosy Club that oozes style and opulence.
No matter when you visit, menus at Cosy Club are always diverse and delectable, be it tapas or a generously portioned plate of culinary goodness. They’ve even put together a festive bill of fare that’ll knock the socks off even the most Grinch-like of Christmas shoppers. Why not put your feet up and enjoy a lunchtime bite while you review who’s left on your gift list?
Pick up stocking fillers at… Frankfurt Christmas Market
A much-loved fixture in the city’s annual calendar, each year the Frankfurt Christmas Market comes to Birmingham, signalling that the festive season really has begun. The market is the largest authentic German market outside of Germany and Austria and mustn’t be missed – keep your hands warm with a steamy mug of hot chocolate (pepped-up with a shot of whiskey, perhaps?) while you pick up some lovely stocking fillers for your own little Christmas elves.
Saunter through the city centre perusing traditional goods and gifts and delicious, freshly prepared German fare like schnitzel, bratwurst sausages, roasted almonds, gluhwein and weissbeer. We can’t think of a better way to get into the festive spirit.
Enjoy drinks and dinner at… Cielo
After all that shopping, you’ve earned dinner, or at the very least, a cocktail or two. Cielo is regarded as one of the finest Italian restaurants in the Midlands, boasting several accolades and awards, ranging from Best International Restaurant and Best Family Restaurant to Best Chef and Best Overall Venue. Located in Birmingham’s exclusive Brindleyplace development, the restaurant overlooks the picturesque Oozells Square and boasts delicate pastels, chic furnishings and a beautiful cascading water feature that gives the restaurant a warm and welcoming atmosphere.
Food offerings at Cielo are comprised of an extensive range of classic Italian and Mediterranean options, with a contemporary twist. Everything is prepared with passion by head chef Adam Talla and his team, who consistently source the finest local ingredients from which to create exciting new dishes.
Have a right old knees-up at… The Old Joint Stock Pub and Theatre Venue
Round off a day of Christmas shopping at the wonderful Old Joint Stock Pub & Theatre Venue. Located in the heart of Birmingham, this fantastic 19th-century Grade II listed building has won numerous accolades and has a well-deserved reputation as one of the city’s best pubs. Step inside this Fuller’s Ale and Pie House and you’ll find a magnificent venue with an impressive glass-domed ceiling, friendly staff and an island bar serving all of Fuller’s cask-conditioned ales, as well as guest ales from local breweries. The Old Joint Stock is home to a wonderful studio-style theatre – situated on the second floor – offering a full programme of entertainment throughout the year and a stellar line-up up Christmas entertainment. Listings are available on the website or from the Theatre Venue box office.
Rest and relax at… Hotel La Tour
After a long day’s retail therapy, a stylish, comfortable place to relaxed and rest is precisely what’s needed. Found in the heart of Birmingham city centre, just a stone’s throw from some of the country’s best shopping, dining and drinking experiences, Hotel La Tour is the perfect home away from home when you’re visiting the city with friends and family in the run up to Christmas.
Why not treat yourselves to dinner at Mr White’s English Chophouse? A contemporary take on a British tradition, Mr White’s specialises in fresh, high quality cuts of meat. The development of the restaurant has been closely guided by Marco Pierre White, maintaining a focus on exceptional British cuisine prepared and served with French flair.
For more Warwickshire and Birmingham-based wining and dining inspiration, be sure to take a look at our Warwickshire & Birmingham Food & Drink Guide. Order a copy from our Get The Guide page, search for restaurants on Food & Drink Guides, or peruse our digital edition online: