Review: Tasting Menu at Lasan, Birmingham

Lasan, as I’ve told you before on the blog, is an excellent Indian Fine Dining Restaurant in Birminghams’ Jewellery Quarter. Amongst their accolades, they’ve won Gordon Ramsays ‘F Word – Best Local restaurant and Chef Aktar Islam has featured on the Great British Mneu on the BBC, and they’ve even been included in The Sunday Times Top 100 UK Restaurants. They are certainly a credit to the Birmingham Food Scene and we recently returned to try out their tasting menu. The interior of Lasan is modern and spacious, with a lovely mezzanine level as well. The decor is simple, but with a few nods to Indian culture, such as the small statues and a couple of Citars on the wall.

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As always, the service in Lasan was second to none, you can certainly see they have focused on this, with a lot of emphasis on a fine dining style of service, such as the dishes being explained to you on arrival at the table, and the refilling of wine and water glasses when the levels are dwindling, and the staff have an extensive knowledge about the food and it’s origins. This was really interesting to us on this most recent visit, with Brajesh taking the time to explain each dish, where in India it originated and how it came about.

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Lasan also do a wine pairing flight to go with their tasting menu, but the double whammy of bringing the car and it being a ‘school’ night meant we couldn’t indulge in this. I did however have a single glass of their prosecco, which was the matching drink for the Amuse and the first course. Our Amuse Bouche was a North Indian Broth of reduced lamb stock, Black Cardamom and Cream. This was delicious, and you could almost feel the restorative properties of the broth seeping into your system!

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The first of the courses was a Smoked Duck Somosa, bound with Aubergine Caviar spiced with Ginger and Ground Raw Mango with a Sweet Tamarind Chutney and Cucumber. The tamarind chutney was the star of this dish, I would give my right arm for a jar of that stuff to have at home!

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Next up was Soft Shell Crab dipped in Ajwain and Kashmiri Chilli Batter, a Devonshire Crab, Green Pea and Potato Cake with a Tomato and Sour Raw Mango Chutney. The batter on this was so crispy and light, and all the flavours were spot on, contrasting and complimenting each other really well.

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After this followed a Tandoori King Prawn marinated in Mustard Tumeric and Lemon, served with Grapefruit, Orange and Fennel. The sharpness and bitterness of the grapefruit and orange really complimented the sweet flesh of the prawn, which was perfectly cooked. Even my non prawn loving husband really enjoyed this!

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Our main fish course was a Pan Fried Seabass Fillet, on slow cooked Aubergine Spiced with Tumeric and Green Chilli, with a Fenugreek, Coconut and Tamarind Sauce. The Seabass was a perfectly cooked piece of fish with a lovely crisp skin. It was so beautifully presented, and the sauce that accompanied it was one of the most delicious things I have tasted in a long long time. They left a mini copper pan full of the sauce on the table, and it was all I could do not to drink the sauce straight from the pan!

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Next was a speciality from Hyderabad – Mutton cooked slowly with pearly barley and lentils, finished with Ginger, Fried Onion and Lime. The presentation of this is a gorgeous copper pan was lovely. There was a great use of texture in this dish with little bits of crisp and crunch amongst amongst the soft meat and lentils.

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Our last savoury course was a Slow Stewed Venison Haunch and Roasted Loin, Curried Pumpkin Pureé, Shallots, Wilted Chard and Okra with a Mughlai Style Pickling Gravy. Another really well rounded dish packed full of interesting flavours, and the pureé was outstanding.

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Dessert was a Bombay Mess, a playful twist on the English Classic. This one consisted of Mango Mousee, Raspberry Sorbet, Berries, Mango, Meringue with a hint of Cardamom and Thai Basil. A lovely fresh way to end the meal. 

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I can honestly say we adored every bit of the tasting menu, and would thoroughly recommend it to others. It’s pretty well priced at £59.95pp with the win flight coming in at £24.95. A perfect idea for that special occasion, or just if you feel liking splashing out on some fantastic food. http://www.lasan.co.uk   Disclosure: We were invited to Lasan to try their food complimentary, but we paid for our own drinks. As always all opinions are honest and our own. 

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