To celebrate the launch of some tasty new additions to the menu at Bodega Cantina, I was invited down to the Birmingham branch to try out some scrummy food with my pals. I decided upon a lil double date with myself, my boyfriend, my best friend from home whom I’ve known for YEARS and her boyfriend. If you haven’t heard of Bodega, it’s an amazing South American restaurant in the heart of the city- on Bennetts Hill near Dirty Martini, Cosy Club and Lost & Found, right where things are a’happenin’- and I’ve been dying to go for months now.
Bodega love to make the individual dining experience unique to each visitor and the hashtag the restaurant has proudly coined is #MyBodega. With eclectic decor (from neon flags to a vibrant ‘Bodega’ sign as you wander into the restaurant) and a party vibe, the restaurant has such a beautiful atmosphere. Eating out at Bodega felt like a celebration and my Bodega experience very much led myself and my pals down a reminiscent route to discussing how finally, just maybe, we’re slowly beginning to learn to adult !! Double dating does definitely feel a sophisticated thang to do, and with Bodega sharing up some delicious grub and the drinks having been flowing, we began realising that maybe adulting is something we’re starting to embrace, rather than being something we’re abso terrified about.
To begin, we ordered some sharing Nachos to the table (how very democratic of us) – but Bodega Nachos have a TWIST n a half. They’re sophisticated – made for sharing with pals whilst you have a good ol’ chinwag setting the world to rights, but they’re also FUN – topped with Dr. Pepper Pork *yes, you heard that right* Bodega clearly likes to give things a playful kick. They really did taste insane. The Nachos weren’t Doritos, which in my eyes is a JOB WELL DONE. Not that I hate Doritos or have anythin’ against them, but it does reet pee me off when a restaurant serves me up something I could have literally done myself at home with a bag o’ crisps and a pot o’ guac. These Nachos were homemade, topped with the Dr. Pepper Pork that actually did kinda taste like Dr. Pepper and in an EXTREMELY good way – an unusual combo that works so damn well – and they made my heart happy. I genuinely cannot tell you how good they were. They were amazing.
As the convo flowed, one thing I think myself and my pals are starting to realise is that we’re slowly, without even realising, entering the world of adulthood and we’re actually beginning to adult and *shockingly* embrace it, something none of us thought we’d EVER be doing. We discussed the fact that myself and my boyfriend will be trialling out living together when we move to London for 2 weeks to undertake internships in just a few weeks time – terrifying, but actually rather bladdy exciting. We discussed #adulting plans for summer, such as a snazzy holiday we’ve booked at a snazzy hotel with views over Palma Bay in Mallorca and my pal’s potential road trip across America with her boyfriend. We also discussed the excitement (and slight fear) surrounding moving in with our respected other halves, and ended up discussing for a solid twenty minutes lettings agent’s fees and ranting about how ridiculously expensive deposits are. Without even realising it, we’ve graduated the days of high school when me and my pal thought schoolwork was the most difficult challenge life throws at ya, and we’re entering a new phase of our lives. And weirdly, we’re actually quite enjoying it! #MyBodega experience helped us realise the right balance of life is sophistication w a lil bit o’ fun thrown in as well!
For main course, I opted for the Burger a la Parilla, which is a faaancy way of saying the delectable description of: homemade 6oz beef burger, cheese and chipotle mayo in a toasted tortilla, with sweet potato fries and smoky slaw on the side. A burger, in a TOASTED TORTILLA. I’m sorry – this may not sound as incred as I’m hyping it up to be, but it really, really is. For someone that finds a lotta bread v filling, it was so nice to have a lighter version of the classic burger, with a seasoned twist. Sam had the Halloumi Burger, which looked incredible and he gobbled down in around 5 minutes. This consisted of breaded halloumi wrapped in AGAIN a toasted tortilla, with lime mayo and pico de gallo salsa, spicy slaw and sweet potato fries. Come to MAMA. My pal had the Peruvian Quinoa Chifa, a delicious stir fry of broccoli, seasonal veggies, omelette and spring onions in a Teriyaki glaze, which smelt divine. Her boyfriend had the Brazilian Xim Xim, which included chunks of chicken, prawns and diced veggies in a creamy peanut butter sauce with rice, onions and peppers. As you can tell, each dish is completely unique and like none other chain restaurant I’ve visited before, and everything was so rich in taste. Literally a feast for the senses, Bodega provided our lil double date with the perfect atmosphere to celebrate our graduation into adulthood. We had the most beaut lil evening, and had a biiiig ol’ catch-up as it’s been so long since I’ve seen my bezzie.
Thank you to Bodega for providing me with this gifted experience. As always, my reviews are totally honest and I wouldn’t be raving about a place unless it ticked all the right boxes – and honestly, I’ll be heading back to Bodega very, very soon! If you’re looking for somewhere unique and flavourful, with a sick atmosphere, in the city centre, make sure to head to Bodega Cantina soon!