We first popped into Grand Central Kitchen just after it opened, and only stayed briefly to have a cup of coffee. I hadn’t tried any of their food so far, although I am always tempted by their specials, which they advertise on their Twitter. So, we decided to pop back today to try their lunch menu.
Grand Central Kitchen is an independent cafe serving a huge selection of sandwiches, wraps, burgers, salads and pizzas that are cooked in usually under five minutes or less! As the name suggests, they’re directly opposite the entrance to New Street Station on Stephenson Street under the brand new Grand Central.
We decided to order the barbecue chicken pizza on an Italian base with a portion of chips to share. While we waited, we had a look around. Though the interior itself hadn’t changed too much, despite the addition of new colourful posters, but there was definitely a more polished feel to the place. They had shiny new menus as well as new coffee cups and matching napkins with the logo on, which we believe are fairly new, but gave a much more sophisticated air to the cafe.
We didn’t have too long to look around though, as the pizza came in around five minutes which we were very happy about, excellent for if you’re in a rush for the train. The toppings – chicken, onions, mushroom, jalapenos and loads of cheese – were substantial (always a bonus) and they were very generous with the chicken, both with quantity and the size of the chicken chunks – which was a pleasant surprise. To be brutally honest, we think for the size, price, time it took to cook and quality of the pizzas at Grand Central Kitchen, there’s almost no point going to a pizza chain. We enjoyed our side of fries too – they were not only a much bigger portion than the unnamed fast food chain which is just around the corner from Grand Central, but also far less oily.
Our sweet tooth couldn’t resist the call of the lemon mousse pots we had spotted in the fridge next to the pleasantly wide range of gluten free cakes (which were of course sealed to prevent contamination). The mousse was very lemony which we really liked and had a lovely smooth consistency. (Our pot wasn’t quite completely set, although admittedly we did choose the one tucked away at the back of the fridge because out of all of them it looked the most photogenic…) We really enjoyed the mousse and it was a lovely end to our lunch.
A few weeks before our visit, he had visited with his mother on their way to catching a train, when they ordered a margherita pizza with a gluten free base to try out their gluten free offering. They were both very impressed and said it was one of the best gluten free pizzas they had ever had, incomparable to the cardboard like pizzas offered by pizza chains. They were used to gluten-free bases not tasting particularly great, but he said this one tasted pretty much like a non-gluten free pizza base; lovely and soft, delicious and, like ours, was made in roughly five minutes. He definitely recommends Grand Central Kitchen for gluten free pizzas in Birmingham city centre!
As we have now tried a few of their pizzas, I think that we’ll have to branch out and try other menu items soon! (I have my eyes on their soup specials that change daily…)