Eating Out West Midlands

Review: Umami, Harborne

10th August 2015

Recently we were invited over to Harborne to try out the newly opened Umami, an Indian Kitchen and Cocktail Bar. I’d heard a few good things so was looking forward to some great Indian food. The relatively small frontage gives way to small bar area and a long narrow dimly lit restaurant. It’s an unusual space but they’ve done well with it. Its clean and smart, and the service matches this. They’re certainly aiming for more upmarket than your standard curry house.


We were there to try out they Indian Summer Wine & Dine deal, that offers a 2 course Fixed Price menu and glass of wine for £15.95pp on a Monday and Tuesday. We also tried a couple of their champagne cocktails – a traditional Kir Royal and Peach Bellini.


Speaking to both the manager and the chef during the meal, it was clear to see their passion for the food. It was lovely to hear that everything was made in house, from grinding and blending their spices to making their own Paneer.

After some decent poppdums and pickles, our starter platter consisted of  Chilli paneer wah wah – Crispy indian cottage cheese tossed in a spicy mix of indo-chinese spices, Murgh tikka and Punjabi somosa ki chaat – dough pastry encasing spiced mix vegetable served with combination chaat chutney.  All three were really well executed dishes, with tender juicy chicken, wafer thin pastry on the samosa and delicious flavours. The paneer, which has never been a favourite of mine was excellent, and may have changed my mind about paneer in general!


For the main it was a veritable feast! Portions of the following were served with Saffron Rice, Raitha, Green salad and one of the best naans I’ve had in a while.

  • Butter chicken- Strips of tikka Chicken cooked in a buttery tomato gravy with a hint of fenugreek and green chili
  • Harra bharra gosht – tender lamb simmered in spinach fresh fenugreek, corriander and mint flavoured with cinnamon and ground cumin
  • Sabzee milloni handi – Fresh seasonal mix vegetables in garam masalla and methi
  • Dal makhani – Creamy black lentils simmered overnight with selected indian spices and butter


I’m not the biggest fan of lamb, but Lee really enjoyed this, cooked on the bone to retain all that flavour. The black lentil dhal was simply fantastic too, and the chicken creamy and delicately spiced. It was an excellent Indian meal and very good value for money if you take up this deal.  I’d certainly go out of my way to go back, particularly to try the main A La Carte menu has some mouthwatering sounding dishes.
Disclosure: The meal was free of charge, all opinions are our own. 

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  • Reply Jen @ Jen's Food 10th August 2015 at 19:23

    The Indian summer menu is a great price and the food looks delicious. It’s good to hear that they grind all their own spices too 🙂

  • Reply Kavey 10th August 2015 at 20:40

    The food does sound good but… I’m slightly disturbed by that odd portrait on the wall. I’m sure it’s not meant to be disturbing but there’s something… odd about it! Must just be me!!!

  • Reply Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes 11th August 2015 at 09:44

    The food looks really yummy! It all sounds like proper authentic Indian food too, none of the mainstream stuff which really appeals to me.

  • Reply Ceri @Natural Kitchen Adventures 11th August 2015 at 10:37

    I love restaurants that prove Indian food is so much more than the local curry house. Sounds like you had a great time and the food was delicious too!

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