There are, of course, a great many things that are worse than Christmas shopping – chief amongst them Christmas shopping when Birmingham’s imbecilic ‘German’ market is in town.
Thus, with the rain steadily dripping off my bald bonce on a gloomy Saturday lunchtime, I sought sanctuary from the hordes of sausage-gobbling part-time drunks who frequent this city’s annual tat-fest.
And, being an enemy of chain eateries, I found my way to Bar Opus, the year-old offshoot of Opus restaurant.
Situated at the base of a new(ish) office block alongside Snow Hill station, Bar Opus has huge windows and a terrace and will be a vibrant place to spend time when the trams are finally running nearby.
There’s funky wallpaper, but a lack of clutter. A light and airy bar takes up one end of the room. An open-plan kitchen dominates the other end.
It’s a bit like the sort of place you might find in Canary Wharf.
Friendly and informed staff are happy to help, but careful not to intrude.
The place wasn’t packed when I visited with my wife, but the food we ordered was a little long arriving.
A complimentary bowl flavoursome paprika-spiked honey-glazed cocktail sausages, however, eased the hunger pangs and raised our mood.
There are various menus to suit different times of the day and we selected from the brunch menu – a range of sweet and savoury dishes varied enough to suit most palates.
The Irish salad I was (eventually) served was a delight – especially the gorgeously textured and very tasty Clonakilty black and white puddings.
Sautee spuds might have benefited from a longer cook, but a poached egg was perfect and the honey and grain mustard dressing was well-balanced.
A selection of leaves added freshness to the bowl.
Lynn’s smoked salmon, avocado and scrambled egg on a bagel with white truffle oil was well-received without causing her to swoon with delight.
We ordered a side of sweet potato fries – unnecessary but very good indeed.
There are craft beers, better known brands, wine, spirits and a range of cocktails. My wife chose fizzy water whilst I sipped a milky stout that was new n the bar list.
Need to know
Expect to pay around £16 a had for brunch with drinks.
Cut costs by eating from the bar plates menu.
Vegetarians are well-catered for.
It’s disabled friendly.
One Snow Hill, Birmingham B4 6GH. 0121 289 3939.