Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt12

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts (see all the parts):

Costermongers
5 Dalton Way
(0121) 2363791

Costers is a dinosaur of a rock pub and one of the last in Birmingham that makes up for its unwelcoming atmosphere by having a very loyal set of regulars. It is underground in both the musical and very physical sense of the word but is one of the few pubs not to benefit by the smoking ban because now you can see the shoddy vandalized décor and smell decades of stale beer. Costers is also home of the most uncomfortable seats and ugliest toilets in Birmingham. Treat this place like a historical theme park.
Mon – Wed, 12noon – 11pm
Thu, 12noon – 12mn
Fri – Sat, 12noon – 1am
Sun, 5pm – 10.30pm

The Black Horse
22 Jennens Road,
Aston,
Birmingham,
B7 4EH
Tel, 01213597108
Kurt Cobain delivered the lethal blow to Heavy Metal in the early nineties; by all accounts it was a mercy killing. Just over a decade later every city harbours the refugees in little die hard pockets. One of these last bastions of the Metal subculture in Birmingham is relatively new and despite its unfortunate location – that’s quite a stomp away from the city centre- it’s thriving due to its community atmosphere, friendly staff, cheap prices and ongoing support for local music. For more detail we highly recommend you pop in for a chat.

Check out The Shouting Gypsy – Danny’s ‘wordcast’

Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt11

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts (see all the parts):

Devils Kitchen
Hurst Street, outside the Nightingale

It’s not so much an actual kitchen as a burger van in the gay quarter of town, but “the devils mobile catering unit” hasn’t really got the same ring. It’s not especially cheap, and the staff are not especially friendly and the choice isn’t what you would call expansive but the portions are large, the food is good and let’s face it if your buying food from a burger van your taste buds have probably been drowned in raw vodka and are now dead anyway.
10pm – 3am
Double burger with cheese £3.00

Sunday Car Boot Sale
Wholesale Markets Precinct
Pershore Street
(0121) 303 0300 or (0121) 303 0250

Perfect for early hungover Sunday mornings or very late Saturday nights. Most car boot sales are just open air charity shops, but recently, with the influx of dodgy but cheap consumer electronics and pirated software this one looks more like a scene from Bladerunner. So if being jostled by gangs of tracksuit wearing proles, dangerously undercooked foods, fencing stolen goods or even the odd bargain is your thing, its probably worth getting out of bed for.
6am – 1 pm

Check out The Shouting Gypsy – Danny’s ‘wordcast’

Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt10

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts (see all the parts):

Q Club
212 Corporation St
Birmingham
B4 6QB
Tel: 0121 212 1212
With a cavernous main room and labyrinthine corridors that turn even the most mundane club night into a drug fuelled weird fairytale adventure this has to be one of the most surreal clubbing experiences in Birmingham. There can be anything up to 10 rooms and 6 bars open at once which means that there is always something to discover and you will lose your friends in seconds flat. The venue has everything from kickboxing matches to Cream, art exhibitions to Dancehall soundsystems so you really don’t have an excuse for not going.
www.queclub.co.uk for details

Baguette Du Monde
Various locations in the city centre
“What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare?” W. H. Davies. Stop and stare?! Lets face it most of us don’t even have a chance to sit and eat, let alone stop and bloody stare. Luckily cheap food on the go is available throughout the city centre, and the baguette is the perfect shape for eating on the move because of the way it is packaged it becomes its own tasty handle. There are, admittedly, cheaper places to buy your baguette, but none have the range of fillings or the same value meal deal.
Any chicken Baguette, crisps or fruit, 330ml soft drink or mineral water or Tea – £2.99

Check out The Shouting Gypsy – Danny’s ‘wordcast’

Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt9

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts (see all the parts):

The Goose @ The OVT
561 Bristol Road,
Selly Oak
Birmingham
B29 6AF
Tel: 01214723186
In the heart of student country (Selly Oak) there is a bastion of ignorance, a place where the ill informed and the badly dressed can come and mix with the flat broke and shouting drunk. Cheap enough to attract the occasional brave student but normally frequented by the usual Wetherspoons crowd, last time I was there we invented a game called “Mad or Drunk” where participants have to discern whether the most vocal of the inhabitants were mentally challenged or merely inebriated. Unfortunately the game was short lived as the answer was almost always “Both”.
Mon-Sun, 11am-12am

The Zen shop

Brindley Place 
Broad street 
Birmingham
Tel: 0121 643 3933
Pretentious crap sold
by exploiting beautiful
Eastern concept. Tat
Mon–Thu & Sun 10am–10.30pm, Fri 10am–11pm, Sat 10am–11.30pm


Check out The Shouting Gypsy – Danny’s ‘wordcast’

Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt8

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts (see all the parts):

International stock
1a Silver Street, Kings Heath
Birmingham. B14 7QX 
Tel: 0121 443 3232
King heaths best kept secret but not in a good way, secret in the sense of the deformed half brother kept in the loft as not to embarrass the family. Depressive tat emporium that sells stock from bankrupt, fire damaged or flooded shops, frequented by haggard old ladies, pinch-faced wives and bored men listening to the football scores over the music system, the chances of getting a bargain here are slim, but it does happen. Visiting here will instil such a large hatred of dull commercialism that Al-Qaeda should set up a recruiting stall in the car park.
Mon-Fri, 9am-5.30pm; Sat, 9am-6pm

The Manic Organic Café
45 Poplar Road, Kings Heath 
Birmingham B14 7AG 
Tel: 0121 441 3802
Charmingly eclectic vegetarian organic café just of the high street, a cosy little place that feels like a friendly hippy’s living room, but clean. Made all the more welcoming by free WiFi access and walls covered with cartoons and art for sale. A seasonal menu with tasty food which in my opinion needs meat, but hey each to their own I suppose. It can get busy during weekends though. A good place to work on a lap-top without the distraction of booze, especially if it’s warm enough to use the sun terrace hidden out the back.
Vegeburger served with salad, kettle crisps and coleslaw – £5.95
Mon-Weds, 9am-5pm; Thurs-Fri, 9am-6pm; Sat, 10am-6pm; Sun 10am-2pm

Check out The Shouting Gypsy – Danny’s ‘wordcast’

Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt7

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts (see all the parts):

The Wellington
37 Bennetts Hill
Birmingham
B2 5SN
Tel: 0121 200 3115
No music, a huge range of ales, friendly staff and traditional décor, make this a perfect “Dad crèche” while you go shopping, where his bored sighs and niggling comments about your overdraft could distract you from buying that perfect pair of trainers. They don’t serve food – unless you count Pork Scratchings, which I certainly do – but you are welcome to bring your own in and use their plates and cutlery, which is a nice touch. Bonus points for spotting their cat “Welly” who some times prowls around wondering why there are so many ooomans in her house.
Open Mon-Sun, 10am-12midnight
http://www.thewellingtonrealale.co.uk

Lickey Hills
The Visitor Centre
Warren Lane
Rednal
Birmingham
B45 8ER
Telephone/Fax 0121 447 7106
Arrrrgh where’s all the buildings gone? What’s that green stuff? What am supposed to do here? Why do those trees look different? There are how many different types? Why? I need litter or neon or something! As you can tell we are more city boys and girls but if nature does call you could do worse than taking the short bus ride to the Lickey Hills. Over 500 acres of woodland and green stuff including a golf course, tennis greens and nature centre with activities and guided walks.
Open – all the time apparently, the countryside doesn’t close for some reason

Danny Smith’s Guide to 2008 Pt1

Danny Smith was writing lots of guides to Brum for the Itchy guide, last year. It never happened, so we present his guide to the past in a number of parts:

Readers World
137 Digbeth
Birmingham
B5 6DR
01216438664
Sure you could go to Borders or WH Smiths who, I’m sure, will always have exactly what you want in clean, well lit, and organised sections. But who wouldn’t rather want to lose half a day rooting around huge Health and Safety defying stacks of second hand sci-fi and fantasy books, in a shop that resembles a cross between a Harry Potter set and a reclusive geeks bedroom? The worlds is a richer place for having shops of this type of uniquely British oddness and consider it your patriotic duty to pop in and grab a musty bargain.
Tues-Sat, 10am-5.30pm

Snobs Nightclub
29 Paradise Circus
Queensway
Birmingham
B1 2BJ
01216435551
Big Wendsdays at Snobs is kinda like the Rolling Stones; just when you think it is due to die, a new generation discovers it and it becomes even more popular than before. The décor hasn’t changed since my parents were enjoying the 50p shots and rutting in the toilets. Most nights have more in common with Caligula’s Vomitariums where the glass walls drip with sweat while you struggle through the elbows of a bouncing crowd. Indie classics in the main room and 60’s soul and funk in the better smaller one; dancing shoes are a requirement. Be warned the queue can get pretty big so check out the Flapper and Firkin for Q jumper tickets.
For details check out http://www.snobsnightclub.co.uk/