Northern Ireland Restaurants

Belfast has experienced an influx of au courant and internationally influenced restaurants, bistros, wine bars, and—as in Dublin—European-style café-bars where you can get good food most of the day and linger over a drink. Local produce and seasonal creativity are the order of the day with top-quality fresh local meat and experimental chefs constantly trying out new ideas. Traditional dishes, of course, still dominate some menus and include Guinness-and-beef pie; steak, chicken and pork; champ (creamy, buttery mashed potatoes with scallions); oysters from Strangford Lough; Ardglass herring; mussels from Dundrum; and smoked salmon from Glenarm. By the standards of the United States, or even the rest of the United Kingdom, restaurant prices can be surprisingly moderate. A service charge of 10% may be added to the bill; it's customary to pay this, unless the service was bad.

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  • 1. Deanes Restaurant

    $$$ | Central District | European

    For 25 years Michael Deane has been the leader of the Belfast culinary pack, and his flagship operation has three distinct restaurants in one...Read More

  • 2. Harry's Shack

    $$ | Irish

    With its raw wooden tables, wood-burning stove, sand on the floor, and outdoor terrace, this beachside restaurant in Portstewart, about 20 minutes...Read More

  • 3. Made in Belfast: Cathedral Quarter

    $$ | Cathedral Quarter | Irish

    This self-styled "restolounge" in the happening Cathedral Quarter is one of Belfast's buzziest bistros and is especially popular with weekend...Read More

  • 4. Ox Restaurant

    $$$ | Central District | Irish

    You’d be hard-pressed to eat this well, for so little money, in such relaxed surroundings anywhere else in Northern Ireland or indeed the whole...Read More

  • 5. Primrose

    $ | Beech Hill | Irish

    Part restaurant and café, part cocktail bar, part French-style patisserie, Primrose overlooks the Quay and is all raves from Derry foodies....Read More

  • 6. Brunel's

    $$ | Mourne Mountains | Irish

    A huge mural on brick walls features a top-hatted Isambard Kingdom Brunel, this relaxed seafood restaurant's namesake and a famous figure in...Read More

  • 7. Café Parisien

    $$ | Central District | French

    Taking its name from the eponymous first-class café on RMS Titanic, Café Parisien divides itself into a downstairs creprerie and a stylish...Read More

  • 8. Established Coffee

    $ | Cathedral Quarter | Irish

    In a world of behemoth coffee chains it is heart-warming to find an independent store creating a funky vibe serving freshly ground beans from...Read More

  • 9. Mourne Seafood Bar

    $$ | Central District | Seafood

    Connoisseurs of fresh fish and shellfish love Mourne Seafood, hidden down a side street and established as a firm favorite. Mussels are from...Read More

  • 10. The Exchange

    $$ | Central District | Irish

    Standout dishes at this busy eatery include Louisiana chicken with chorizo cream sauce and tobacco onions, ribs and steaks, and locally caught...Read More

  • 11. The House Restaurant

    $$ | Central District | European

    A trio of dining experiences is reflected in different rooms at this refashioned old waterfront building which was once Derry's Custom House...Read More

  • 12. The Muddlers Club

    $$ | Cathedral Quarter | Irish

    Though its name is derived from a revolutionary secret society that met here 200 years ago, there is nothing exactly covert about the Muddlers...Read More

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