Big Man’s Food
A couple of weeks ago, I took the kids for dinner at a local restaurant, Big Man’s Food. Friday night is usually takeaway night but the kids asked if we could eat out instead, as they’d been in all day. We usually eat out as a family but Sukh was working late so I decided to take the kids anyway.
Big Man’s Food is a restaurant in Oldbury at quite a busy junction. There’s a handful of other restaurants on the same complex but they’re mostly chains and even though we love the odd meal at restaurants you can find all over the world, it’s always nice to eat somewhere individual and unique.
Before Friday’s visit, we’d only eaten here once before on my birthday in 2017. We had loved it then and I’m surprised we hadn’t been back since. There’s plenty of parking outside the restaurant and we pulled up just before 7.15. Our table was booked for half-past but we were greeted by friendly staff and seated straight away.
It’s not a huge place but it’s intimate. It wasn’t very busy but it was still quite early for a Friday evening. Shivam had wanted to sit in one of the booths but all three were already occupied.
Let me talk you through the decor. As soon as you walk in you feel as though you’ve just entered a comic book. There are huge red and blue stripes running across all the walls but what really stands out are the posters. All the walls are covered in framed movie posters and superhero canvases. Shivam immediately loved the place – given that he’s a fan of every kind of superhero under the sun. He had even come dressed for the occasion (which was unplanned), in his Superman Vs Batman T-shirt and Batman cap.
The menu itself is quite quirky, with each item playing on a movie or character theme. The food is very American diner-esque; burgers, hot dogs, fries, pizza etc. We spent a few minutes deciding what we wanted to eat but found it so hard to narrow it down. It was refreshing to see you could order your soft drinks by the jug – which works out cheaper and you get a lot more bang for your buck. I was also pleased to see you could swap out the meat in any of their burgers and choose lamb, beef or chicken. It’s rare you get that option unless you really ask. You are also able to create your own burger if the set items don’t appeal.
As soon as Shivam opened the menu, he declared he wanted ‘The Boss’ burger, which is a tower of five patties! There was no way I was allowing him to eat that – it was way too big for him. Sukh had had it when we came for my birthday and it took him ages to finish. There’s no way an eight-year-old was going to be able to munch through that – not even Shivam! And so, he went into a little sulk and said he didn’t want anything. I decided to order for him and knew when the food arrived, he’d forget all about his little tantrum.
In the end, I ordered a classic burger each. Shalini isn’t a fan of sauce of any kind (she will just about eat mayo now and then and she would never dream of ever having tomato ketchup!) and therefore asked for hers without.The kids had theirs with regular fries while I upgraded to chilli cheese fries for us all to share. We also ordered a portion of spicy chicken wings from the starter menu but decided to have everything out at the same time so we could pick and mix.
The food took a while to come but that actually worked well for us as one of the couples left which meant we were able to move over to a booth. That finally put a smile on Shivam’s face! As we waited, Shivam studied each photo and poster. He was particularly excited every time he spotted Will Smith! Shalini enjoyed reading all the funny phrases on the posters which had been speciailly designed for Big Man’s Food.
We were quite hungry by the time the food arrived. It was presented well in flat trays and baskets, with paper lining, just like you get in American diners. The burgers came with a couple of onion rings and were a lot bigger than I remembered from my previous visit. The chicken wings were also fairly big and I knew we would never be able to finish all of this food between the three of us.
The burgers were piping hot and delicious, the wings could have been spicier but had a nice flavour and the chill cheese fries were tasty. It was just as you would expect from American fast food. We hardly spoke to each other for the next fifteen minutes as we polished off our food. Halfway through my burger, I knew I would never be able to finish it and so then just ate the patty and salad and ditched the bread. We also ended up with half of the chicken wings untouched and so asked for them to be packed. We were well and truly stuffed.
On the way out I caught a chat with the owner and asked him where he had got the inspiration for the restaurant. He said he had been to a place in Toronto called The Burgernator which was based on The Terminator movie. He said he had immediately wanted to do something similar but inclusive of all movies – and take it to the next level with comic book superheroes. He also told me they had opened another restaurant in Brierley Hill in the West Midlands and were now looking at Stratford Road in Birmingham too.
The owner admitted the place was looking a little run down but that they were closing for a couple of days soon to freshen it up. As a family, we enjoy eating at some really nice places but sometimes you just want something casual and chilled out. We’re not fussy customers and if a place needs a bit of sprucing up, it doesn’t scare us off. I know a lot of people are put off by things like that. But as long as a place is clean, the staff are friendly and my kids are happy, then I’m happy.
I was just about to pay the bill when our waiter informed the owner we had had to wait a long time for our food and so we were given a discount, which was a bonus. I knew we would definitely be returning as we had really enjoyed our evening out.
Decor: I thought the decor was very vibrant because there were a lot of superheroes around. There were lots of funny quotes on the wall which made me laugh.
Food: I am a big fan of burgers so I really liked the food. We had to wait a bit but it was worth the wait. At the end I was nice and full and I really enjoyed the meal. Next time I would like to try the hot dog because I’ve had a burger both times now.
Customer Service: It was good because the people were chatty and friendly.
Score: 9/10 because I love burgers and it tasted amazing.
Decor: I thought it was nice and American and I liked the pictures on the walls. The superhero paintings were awesome. I really like the Batman and Superman poster. It was nice and cosy and I really liked the sofa seats.
Food: I loved the cheesy fries the most because they are nice and hot and spicy, and I love spicy food. The burger was really nice. It was really filling and it made me really stuffed. The normal fries were nice and crunchy. I had two chicken wings and they were yummy.
Customer Service: They were nice and friendly. The food take a long time to come but that’s OK because it gave us time to chat.
Score: 8/10 for two reasons – how long it took for the food to come and it really made me full. I wanted to keep eating but I was stuffed.