Eating out with young children is not always straightforward, but thankfully some restaurants make it easier than others. This is the main reason I love Pizza Express for dining as a family. I was recently invited to pop along to my local Pizza Express in Harborne for a review, and of course I couldn’t resist.
Pizza Express Harborne review
The Pizza Express Harborne branch has just had a lovely refurbishment. It’s very homely and inviting, while being fresh and sleek. I love that it has booths as these are great for young diners; much better than wriggling round on a chair.
I’m also a big fan of the open kitchen set up at Pizza Express in Harborne. It’s reassuring to see all the fresh ingredients, and fascinating to watch the pizzas being made. The chef making the bases and flipping them in the air to stretch them is a particular highlight.
The Piccolo menu is ideal for our family. My daughter is not adventurous with food, and takes comfort in the same choices, so it is important to go somewhere we know she will enjoy the children’s options. And for £7.25 for 3 courses I think this is excellent value and makes dining out as a family reasonable.
The dough balls are always a winner, and this time she even tried (and liked!) the garlic butter. Her go-to main is margherita pizza. I like that on the times she doesn’t finish it, the staff are always happy for us to take it home. It’s great for lunch the next day!
On this visit my daughter had brownie for pudding and the bambinoccino which is a lovely inclusion to the Piccolo menu. The brownie always looks delicious, but I wouldn’t know as she has never let me try it!
As for the grown-up menu, I always look forward to a trip to Pizza Express. I think the menu is very varied, has something for everyone, and accommodates dietary requirements really well. I like to try different dishes when I visit, so this time I had calamari to start and La Reine Romana as a main.
Both were delicious. The calamari was cooked perfectly, with a crunchy coating but not overdone so it is chewy. The accompanying dip was very moreish. The pizza was also fabulous, with a crispy base and the right level of cheese. I feel the toppings are well balanced so you get a good hit of each flavour.
My husband had the cheesy garlic bread and the tuna niçoise salad. While it’s not our normal choice to have a salad, I have always thought the options were inventive and tasty, so we have them from time to time. It arrived with a generous helping of tuna, as well as egg, potato, anchovies, olives and the mixed leaf base.
Dessert and drinks
I think Pizza Express has so many great drink options. I don’t drink alcohol these days, and their soft drinks offering is so varied. As well as a plethora of juices, presses and fizzy drinks, you can enjoy 0% Peroni and other non-alcoholic beverages.
As for dessert, I love the Dolcetti – a mini dessert served with a hot drink. I had the Biscoff cheesecake with an oat milk flat white. You can make any of their hot drinks decaffeinated which is great. This was ideal for me as I don’t really drink caffeine after lunch, but still love the taste.
My husband had the honeycomb cream slice. Both were delicious, but I think the cheesecake had the edge. My daughter certainly thought so!
Overall it was a lovely meal – the food was delicious, the service was prompt and the atmosphere is great. I love that there’s no eye-rolling if your little one makes a mess, which let’s face it, children do! The activities to keep little ones occupied are always welcome too.
We’ll definitely be back at the Harborne branch before we know it.
Just as a final note, I’m also a big fan of Pizza Express app. It makes paying easy, gives you access to some great offers, and you can even book your table through it.
My meal was gifted for the purposes of this review. As always the provision of free products or services does not influence my views, which remain my own and honest.