It seems like Lichfield is really on to something. The food scene has organically grown from when it was just Margheri ten years, to one that is thriving around the Bore Street area. There are great bakeries, good pizza, street food, and the small matter of a Michelin starred restaurant; the first ever in the area. For a city that has always had money to spend, it finally has the places to retain that cash, rather than lose them to a thirty-minute train ride to Birmingham as so often has been the case. 

Patty Freaks have joined the Lichfield party. They have quite the cult following; I know as much from the queues at Digbeth Dining Club. The new restaurant is in a unit in an arcade next to the excellent Otto, visual heavy with monochrome illustrations and with arcade games. It is clear that they have thought-out their first restaurant well; the beer is carefully sourced, as are the canned cocktails and even the desserts, which come from fellow street food stalwarts, the excellent Urban Cheesecake. The menu appears to be mostly a list of their greatest hits, or at least I think it is. I’ll be honest, I’ve only ever had them twice before and neither time blew me away. 

I like them this time. So much so that I’ll certainly be back given my frequency of being in the area. The burgers are good, though I still think they could take bolder seasoning to draw out the beefiness more. The Sweet Freak seems something of a signature to them and as the name suggests, it’s sweet. The beef has to keep company with peanut butter and caramel and sweet chilli jam. Even the bacon appears sweetened. Is it too much? Yes. Does it work? I think so. I finish it, which is saying something. The ‘Chucky’ goes the other way with the patty topped with decent pulled beef and a Carolina sauce with lots of mustard heat. The chicken thigh bites have had too long in the fryer though the buffalo sauce is excellent and the use of citrus a considered way of balancing everything out. 

Prices are fair with only the Chucky creeping over a tenner and those chicken bites – a meal in themselves – just £7. Our bill with three cans of cocktails just under £40 for two, though it’s easy to reduce that by being less greedy. Lichfield continues to roll on as a food destination by itself, adding good burgers to the mix. Just get rid of Fabricant and I’ll consider the move myself.