The bright and lively Cafe Opus at Ikon Gallery is an excellent addition to the Brindleyplace area - perfect for a lazy weekend brunch, lunch or even an evening meal.
I've been to Cafe Opus several times now, usually at the weekends for a late breakfast or lunch (always accompanied by a wander around the excellent Ikon, of course). It is usually very bright, with light pouring in through the massive windows, and has a really cool and relaxed atmosphere.
The menu at Cafe Opus is straightforward and unfussy, and the food is consistently very good. I've tried several dishes before, including spatchcock chicken with couscous, braised lamb belly and Eton mess, all were delicious. On my last visit I had a juicy pork sausage 'hot dog', which came in a bun with caramelised onions, chunky cut chips and a refreshing apple compote. Adam S. had one of the specials, Hake (fish of the day) with crushed potatoes and a Nicoise dressing. There is always a mouthwatering mound of fresh cakes on display should you go for desert.
Like the food menu, the wine list is refreshingly straightforward, with several reds, whites and a couple of rose and sparkling options to choose from. Adam S. and I have had the 50cl carafe (house wines only) option before, which is about half the price of a bottle, at £8.50, and yields more than a glass each.
Cafe Opus is also a wonderful place to meet up for an evening drink during the week, especially in the summer. The outdoor area places you right in the heart of the pretty Oozells Square, and is fully kitted out with bright and quirky chairs, heaters and even blankets. On a recent Friday night visit Adam S. and I were surprised to find a singer/musician outside, serenading the diners. He was excellent and the atmosphere was great. I've since learnt that Cafe Opus have regular 'Steak Night Fridays with live music', as well as 'Meat Free Mondays', which I'll definitely be heading back for.
I'm not sure whether Cafe Opus is available for hire for events but occasionally I have attended private views and lunches at Ikon Gallery, with food served at Cafe Opus and seating set out in an adjoining marquee in the square, a set up that works very well.
The food here is always absolutely delicious, and presented faultlessly. Fresh ingredients, and the backing of "big sister" restaurant, Opus on Cornwall St, provide a unique experience and the impressive surroundings of Ikon Gallery and Brindleyplace.
Perfect on a sunny day and with the added benefit free WiFi (so you can actually work on a working lunch), you can't go far wrong.
Only deducting half a point for service which, whilst always friendly, can occasionally be a little too leisurely.
Opus is a nice little cafe in the equally cool Ikon Art Gallery, situated in the Brindleyplace area, so it comes with a great atmosphere too.
It has a good, though not especially cheap, lunch menu, with a good selection of platters etc. Service has always been very good here and its fresh and bright decor works well with the gallery's look.
There's a fair amount of seating outside, too, which is brilliant for any of the festivals which spill out into Brindleyplace.
A great place to kick back and feel a bit cultured. Then you can go to the gallery shop.
Since the previous reviews Cafe Ikon has been taken over by Opus to become, very originally - Cafe Opus!
Gone with the tired tapas and in with the deconstructed salads, risottos and hearty soups. A decent vegetarian selection. I chose the creamy mushrooms on toast with tarragon - very nice. Luckily, also gone are those horrible leaky glass (apparently designer) teapots but I do miss the selection of teas Cafe Ikon had. The peppermint tea wasn't the best I have ever had. What's with the ratty crocheted table mats with the teapot though? They clash with the otherwise clean decor. Did grandmother give them as a present and you feel obligated to put them out?
Service was erm...so so. Staff are very green and need a bit more training. I would have expected them to be on top of their game by now. The cafe has been open at least a month. One lacked finesse in serving and customer service. When we wanted to pay by card she pulled a horrible face, said to us she didn't know how to use the card machine yet and shouted a colleague over. Said colleague gushed that it 'had been an absolute pleasure in serving us today'...retch retch retch. Horrible American style platitudes that are guaranteed to get people's backs up. Stop it.
Café Ikon is really the only independent 'coffee shop' in the Brindleyplace area so of course it's my go-to place here. However, it's not so much a coffee house but a café so whilst coffee & dessert after the cinema trip is great, it's best for its tapas. I've found myself here twice over the recent Birmingham Jazz Festival period & the service is great on a busy Saturday lunchtime as it is mid week early evening. The tapas (small plates) - pick-a-mix as I call it gives you an opportunity to try out a number of dishes starting at just £2.50 or a big platter of hummus & lovely bread. I tried the Courgette frito with cheese sauce at $5.50 (excellent) and there are always everyone's favourite, fried potatoes.
There's an extensive drinks list if you just wanted to pop in for a drink or indeed make a meal of it. Oh and there's now free WiFi.
This is a gallery café and fine dining restaurant all in one. You can pop in for a cuppa and slice of cake after soaking up the Ikon Gallery's cultural delights or get dolled up for a delightful evening meal.
The lunch and dinner menu primarily features tapas-style small plates. You can order large sharing platters of fish and cured meats that make ideal shared starters or light snacks.
The food is a cut-above most of the other tapas joints in the city. This means that prices are slightly higher than elsewhere (about £5.00 per plate). They offer fixed price menus for groups of eight or more (£18.95-£22.50 per person). Excellent service, thick white table linen and the great wine list make a meal here feel like a real treat.
Cafe Ikon is classy. Simple as. Walls are white, service is great, wine is flowing and the food...OMG, so good.
It's more of a restaurant than a cafe to be honest and is very impressive for a first date. Hint hint boys!
Tapas range from £2-£5.75, which I think is reasonable considering the quality of the food.
Larger plates range from £7.50-£8.50 with paella and sharing platters for around £12/£13.
Perfect for coffee and cake in the day or for a date /after work meal in the evening (it's close to the cinema too!)
Cafe Ikon offers fixed price menus priced £18.95 and £22.50 per person for groups of 8 and over.
Opening times are:
Tuesday - Saturday 11am-10pm (food served 12-3pm and 5-10pm Tues-Fri and 12-10pm Sat)
Sunday 11am - 6pm (food served 12-4pm)
Closed Mondays except Bank holidays.
It is advisable to book in advance - 0121 248 3226
This cafe is understated. They have a very good lunch and dinner menu. Try the homemade hummus with bread for only £2.50, and for afters a lemon tart at £4.25, simply delicious.
Free Wifi is available and the cafe is part of the larger Ikon gallery, so if you have time to spare, local exhibitions, workshops, events and a small gift shop are close-by. (hint, all profits support charitable artistic and educational programmes). Wheelchair access to the cafe is also a bonus.
There is good seating space inside and is usually quieter in the day. Very busy after 5pm, and heaving on a Saturday, closed on Mondays. A regular haunt of mine, and a place I love socialising in.
If you like tapas then you definitely have to visit the Ikon Cafe - it does fantastic, authentic tapas which as i type this, makes me wish i was tucking into the melting chicken livers dish they do - yummy!
they do a wide selection of nibbles too like breads, olives and nuts to accompany the menu of tapas as well as mains. if you want paella you sometimes have to order it (think this is the case for the seafood one, not had it for a while so not 100% sure).
It's lovely in the summer as there are seats outside and you can watch the world go by. Inside seating is not the most comfortable in the world but you soon forget once you tuck into the great grub!
suggest you book as they can get busy and there arent that many covers.
the owners do catering and if you are a large party it's worth asking about the set meals they can do which per head is very reasonable and you get lots of food.
Cafe Ikon is one of my favourite Birmingham haunts. Located in the hyper trendy Ikon Gallery, it is a small and friendly tapas/Spanish restaurant usually full of arty types. The menu is varied - tapas including the traditional patatas bravas, spanish omelettes, fish dishes - they also do paella but you may have to give notice if you want that. The price is reasonable and they have always been friendly when I've gone in with my kids (both under 5) who love the patatas here. My favourites on the menu are cod in lentils, monkfish, green beans with pine nuts and the I join my childrens love of potatoes too! I also love coming here with girl friends - it is cosy and good for girly chats.
The setting is great, and if we ever had sun in the summer, sitting outside the cafe in Brindleyplace with tapas and a glass of wine can't be beaten.
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