Generally, my aim with Han Eats is not to use it as a platform to blast and purposefully post negative posts to gain a reaction or freebies just for the sake of it (*famously unfussy*).
What I WOULD like to achieve with my blog, however, is to use it as a means to encourage restaurants and venues to up their game where I feel they are on to a good thing and could be doing so much more; whether it be quality of food, service from their staff or general atmosphere of the place.
I would definitely like to say this to Meating, in Birmingham’s Arcadian.
Having visited on a couple of occasions now, I’m left almost with a feeling of despair that a great place and concept is going to waste. And here’s why:
1. The dreaded empty restaurant: both times I have visited Meating, the place has been almost empty. Does anyone else absolutely hate that sinking feeling when you walk into a restaurant you’ve personally booked or for a special occasion and you’re the only ones in there? I’d like to think that at more typically-busy day parts (more so than a Sunday & Wednesday evening) that the place is filled with happy diners. However I’m yet to be convinced…
2. Get the basics right: let your punters know what’s off the menu, before they’ve taken 20 minutes to collectively decide they all want the dish that you then proceed to tell them is off, or before you return with all other drinks & ‘forget’ the drink that you’ve actually just run out of…
3. Equally, know your menu & offer (doing so with passion also helps): if you’re going to have an unusual, exciting menu full of a great selection of ‘locally-sourced, rare-breed’ meats, make sure your staff know and appear to care about this. Try to make sure they’re tuned in enough to make recommendations or suggest adequate changes, should certain items be missing from the menu. If you’re not confident they’ll do this alone, get the chefs to prompt them on alternatives dishes to offer guests, ‘dishes of the day’ etc.
Despite the above comments, and the underwhelming feeling that follows when you feel such things could be so easily rectified, I absolutely LOVE the food at Meating.
Given its reasonable price range (think Las Iguanas or something similar), the portions are HUGE, and so are the flavours.
This kebab, for example, was piled high with filling and a huge amount of (beautifully rare) flat iron steak.
Remember when I said it would be nice for staff members to suggest changes to unavailable elements of dishes? This kebab is usually served with ‘sticky molasses lamb’, however one of my party suggested keeping the yummy toppings & simply changing to the flat iron steak 😋 Something I hadn’t thought of myself… Call myself a foodie?!
A tasty buttermilk chicken burger (again, huge) and regular burger were the other dishes around the table + additional sweet potato + regular skin-on fries.
Although I have yet to sample one (anywhere), Meating have jumped on the Freak Shake wagon. Having scouted them on Instagram, I’m still yet to be successfully enticed to try one of these true feats of gluttony in any non-cholesterol-fearing venue…
With many other deliciously-described burgers, cuts of meat, plus great regular offers (e.g. 50% off food Monday’s) and an ongoing offer with my Independent Birmingham card, I’ve no doubt I’ll be enticed back when I’m craving a meat fix at a reasonable price. Whether I can forgo a buzzing atmosphere to do so is yet to be decided…
First Floor, The Arcadian Centre