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Belfast Restaurant Week: Here Are The 17 Restaurants Taking Part From Cathedral Quarter

The Cathedral Quarter is set to to be buzzing later this month as Belfast Restaurant Week kicks off in Belfast City Centre.

Running from February 18-24 the event will see restaurants across Cathedral Quarter and Belfast One areas offer a whole host of fantastic offers throughout the week.

With a variety of restaurants offering 2 for £10 and 2 for £15 offers you’ll be spoilt for choice.  Not just that in St George’s Market there will be a series of displays and food demonstrations as well as The Big Belfast Brunch, from 11am – 3pm on Sunday 24 brings the week to a close.

Don’t forget to share your Belfast Restaurant Week experiences on social media by using the hashtags #BRW19 and #CQBelfast

Here are the 17 restaurants taking place from Cathedral Quarter:

1. The Academy Restaurant

Ulster University, York Street, BT15 1ED

Located at Ulster University, The Academy Restaurant offers contemporary dining and generally serves up its food for students at the Ulster University Business School, but is also open to the public. The restaurant prides itself on working with local suppliers and equally dotes on being a member of Taste of Ulster, which promotes the best in Northern Irish food and drink. The Academy Restaurant observes high standards of cleanliness and has received 5 stars for hygiene.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £10 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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2. Northern Whig

10 Bridge Street, BT1 1LU

The Northern Whig bar and restaurant sits in the heart of Belfast and serves local cuisine and specialist cocktails. The establishment won Best Pub at the National Pub and Bar Awards 2017 and is one of the top 100 hospitality businesses in Northern Ireland. The Northern Whig prides itself on its expertly mixed ‘Cathedral Quarter Cocktails’ and offers classes in cocktail making. Meanwhile, the restaurant takes care to serve dishes made from local ingredients only.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £10 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm) & 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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3. Yardbird

The Dirty Onion & Yardbird, 3 Hill Street, BT1 2LA

Yardbird is a rotisserie chicken restaurant and is proud of its preparation methods. These involve marinating the chicken in buttermilk, lemon and paprika for 24 hours; dry-rub it, cook it; blast it in the freeze chiller; and then placing it on a spit. Ribs and wings are also part of the menu, as are homemade desserts, and all dishes are prepared on the premises. This restaurant is passionate about chicken and just as passionate about providing efficient service.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £10 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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4. 2Taps Wine Bar

Cotton Court, 30-42 Waring St, BT1 2ED

2Taps is a stylish, family owned restaurant and wine bar and specialises in tapas. Situated in the Cathedral Quarter, the restaurant serves a wide variety of taps and offers seasonal dishes as well as an express lunchtime menu. The restaurant also proudly boasts a large seating area so guests can enjoy sip a glass of something smooth on the palate or relax with friends and something tasty out in the sun.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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5. 44

44 Hill St, BT1 2LG

44, also known as ’44 Hill Street’, is ideal for those looking for a taste of the Med. This restaurant specialises in Mediterranean cuisine and serves seasonal dishes, from casual lunch dishes to plates you can share with your friends or family. The premises itself has had a varied history, from earlier days as a bonded warehouse and butter merchant through to its present form as 44 and you’ll find traces of its past inside the restaurant, such as some of the exposed brickwork.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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6. Malmaison

34-38 Victoria St, BT1 3GH

The Malmaison Belfast hotel is inspired by the city’s most famous ship, The Titanic, and has a sleek restaurant by the name of Chez Mal. The brasserie serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, features a large wine list and seats up to 60 people. Here you can enjoy classic dishes with the chefs’ own twists.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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7. Buba Belfast

St Anne’s Square, BT1 2LR

Buba Belfast offers up food and drinks inspired by the Eastern Mediterranean. The menu features all kinds of snack-type foods and light bites, such as mezze boards and flat breads, and also a lunch menu which includes falafel, fried chicken and other tasty treats. Vegans will appreciate the vegan menu, which features aubergine fritters, stuffed peppers and specially-prepared desserts. If you especially like the restaurant, and if you like planning ahead, you’ll be interested to know that it’s taking Christmas bookings.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch & 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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8. Cafe on the Square

6-8 Ulster Street, BT13EW

Café On The Square is one of Belfast’s newest eateries, if not the newest, and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. The restaurant is big on quality and the chef (s) uses local ingredients to prepare dishes that are fresh, good quality and always available on the menu. Typical dishes include battered haddock with chips, spiced barbecue burger and pan-fried gnocchi, and are all very tasty.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch & 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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9. Coppi

Saint Anne’s Square, BT1 2LR

Coppi is an endearing Italian restaurant and prepares its dishes with local produce. You’re certainly spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing your meal, since the restaurant has a large menu that consists of pizzetta, pasta and risotto, breads and boards and more. The restaurant has also prepared a special menu for Belfast Restaurant Week, where there are dessert, main course and cicchetti options.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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10. Novelli

AC Marriott Hotel, BT1 3FE

Based at City Quays, Novelli offers French and other Mediterranean cuisine and is perfect for those who enjoy a stylish restaurant. The restaurant is equipped with a terrace so that guests can soak up the sun while they tuck into tasty dishes such as butter cured pork belly or wild Irish venison, or refresh with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc. Vegans will welcome the specially designed Vegan menu, which features chickpea curry, butternut squash and other vegan favourites.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch & 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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11. Pizza Punks

20-22 Waring St, BT1 2ES

Pizza Punks is pretty much what it says on the tin, but goes a little easier on the infamous rebellion and angst of the punk heyday, which makes it a nice place for a pizza. While operating under the punk theme, the restaurant serves delicious pizzas cooked over an authentic wooden fire. You’ll see traditional pizzas on the menu, including margherita, or you can choose your own toppings from the colourful menu, which will likely remind you of a certain Sex Pistols album cover.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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12. SQ Bar and Grill

Saint Anne’s Square, 20 Talbot Street, BT1 2LD

SQ Bar and Grill is situated in St Anne’s Square and is a part of the Ramada Encore.  You can eat indoors or outdoors and revel in the vibe in the square. The restaurant has won awards for its food and opens for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The surroundings are modern and the staff are pleasant and attentive. Typical dishes include SQ Bar and Grill’s signature dish chicken liver parfait and seasonal dishes such as Mourne lamb.

BRW Offer: 2 Courses for £15 (Monday to Thursday, 5-7pm)

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13. Bert’s Jazz Bar

The Merchant Hotel, 16 Skipper Street, BT1 2DZ

Bert’s Jazz Bar, located in The Merchant Hotel, will steal your heart the moment you step into it. The bar offers live jazz music and takes you back to 1930s New York, with its Art Deco and sophistication. The bar provides French bistro-style dining and the menu features classics such as beef bourguignon, plus baked camembert and other dishes for sharing. You can take brunch here or sip an Irish gin — it’s your choice. The jazz pianist starts up at around midday and then it’s all the jazz piano you can handle through to 2:00 am.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch

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14. Curated Kitchen

60 Donegall Street, BT1 2GT

Curated Kitchen is a warm, welcoming coffee bar in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter and describes itself as a bar that’s good food and coffee for the social and the curious. The bar takes its inspiration and ingredients from home and abroad and is as much into the story behind recipes and ingredients as it is the product itself. Each week, the bar serves a menu curated from a cookbook it considers would prove popular with its clientele.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch

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15. Hadskis

33 Donegal Street, Commercial Court, BT1 2NB

Hadskis is an award-winning restaurant and came about as a result of one man’s love for producing pots and pans, and another’s for cooking terrific food. The restaurant likes to mix things up and makes regular changes to the menu. Guests can expect to find Northern Irish steak and lamb or fresh homemade pasta on it, and there’s also a tart of the day amongst other desserts or you could opt for a dessert cocktail. On Mondays there is a wine and food pairing session if you’re particularly into food and drink.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch Sunday

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16. The Mac

10 Exchange St West, BT1 2NJ

The Mac may be home to a range of exhibitions, works, theatre performances and more, but this cultural hub has its own delightful little coffee bar. The bar serves breakfast and lunch, takes bookings and is open till late. On show nights, the bar will stay open longer. Typical items on the lunch menu include seafood chowder and a variety of burgers. According to The Mac website, more than 1.5 million people have walked through the centre’s doors since it opened in 2012 and, with all the shows, workshops, etc, combined have drunk more than 90,00 cups of coffee.

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch

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17. Made In Belfast CQ

Talbot Street, BT1 2LD

Free range sustainable food served in quirky surroundings in a non-pretentious way. Fun, fabulous food.  From the outset the ethos behind Made in Belfast was to put the money into the food. The design concept echoed the sustainability traits by reusing second hand furniture, adding to the décor with old saucepans and pottery jars, with a little bit of Ikea here and there.  The clientele ranges from groups of students and tourists, couples and families, young and old. 

BRW Offer: Big Belfast Brunch (Sunday)

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With a variety of offers and a whole host of establishments to visit, Belfast Restaurant Week is certainly set to be a thrilling week for the nation’s food and drink lovers. You don’t have to be an enthusiast, however, to enjoy it. Why not make the most of the offers to try something new?

To find out more about Belfast Restaurant Week go to belfastrestaurantweek.org

Don’t forget to share your Belfast Restaurant Week with us on social using the hashtags #BRW19 and #CQBelfast

By Peter Jenkins, Excalibur Press

Business

ASOS to Create Over 180 Jobs in Northern Ireland with new Tech Hub

Economy Minister Gordon Lyons today announced that ASOS, one of the world’s leading online fashion retailers, is to invest £14million in a new Tech Hub in Belfast and create 184 new jobs over the next three years.

Welcoming ASOS to Northern Ireland, Gordon Lyons said: “Today’s announcement by ASOS is a clear vote of confidence for Northern Ireland and our strong appeal as an investment location. The development of the new Belfast Tech Hub and the creation of over 180 jobs represents a significant investment in Northern Ireland by the company. In return, our talent base will provide ASOS with the high quality engineering resources it needs to deliver its international growth plans.

“Once in place, the new jobs will contribute almost £6.5million in additional annual salaries to the local economy. Of the new roles, 130 will participate in my Department’s pre-employment Assured Skills training programme which will offer the company a pipeline of skilled people over the next three years.”

The Minister added: “The first Assured Skills Academy with ASOS, focusing on Data Engineering and being delivered by South Eastern Regional College, is open for applications now – I urge anyone who is interested and eligible to apply for this exciting opportunity.”

Speaking about the company’s decision to invest in Northern Ireland, Nick Beighton, CEO, ASOS, said: “As a rapidly growing business at the forefront of online retailing, we’re continually investing in our technology capabilities. Our new hub will provide us with cutting-edge tech expertise to support future growth. Belfast has a wealth of tech talent and we’re excited to be establishing a permanent base in such a vibrant city.”

The new Belfast hub will be operational in early 2022, with 52 dedicated roles in the first year, growing to 184 by 2024, with recruitment already under way. Recruiting across a range of levels and job functions, including engineering and data science, the creation of the new hub in Belfast is part of the wider strategic plans for ASOS’ tech team, which will enable the team to support the continued growth and expansion of ASOS.

Cliff Cohen, Chief Technology Officer, ASOS, said: “ASOS is a fast-growing business and constantly looking to innovate through our technology. As we continue to scale our investment in technology, we are looking to hire talent across engineering roles into our new Tech Hub, and help foster talent in Northern Ireland by supporting its growing reputation as a centre for tech excellence.”

To help secure this project, Invest Northern Ireland has been working with ASOS since 2017, showcasing all that Northern Ireland has to offer. The agency has offered almost £1.2million of support towards the new software engineering roles and the Department for the Economy is funding pre-employment Assured Skills Academy training to the value of almost £1million over three years.

Kevin Holland, Invest NI’s CEO said: “I’m delighted to welcome ASOS to Northern Ireland. Securing this project is yet another tremendous endorsement of our compelling value proposition which includes our highly educated population, underpinned by some of the best educational facilities in the UK. The new roles will offer a range of opportunities for software engineers and analysts, development opportunities for those in the early stages of their tech careers and will provide exciting pathways for people to join Northern Ireland’s digital workforce. We very much look forward to supporting ASOS to grow in Northern Ireland.”

Applications for the ASOS Data Engineering Assured Skills Academy are open until 5.00pm on Friday 22 October 2021. Training will commence for successful applicants on Monday 10 January 2022.

Experience is not required but applicants must be at least 18 years of age and eligible to work in the UK.

More information and details on how to apply are available at http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/assured-skills

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Business

NI Engineering Company, PAC Group, Receive Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Innovation

Belfast-based electrical and mechanical engineering company, PAC Group, has received royal recognition for its innovative carbon fibre preforming technology. 

The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious business awards in the UK, with winners personally approved by her Majesty the Queen. The Group were the only company from Northern Ireland to receive the award for the Innovation category in 2021, and were the first Innovation category winner from the province for three years.

The Lord Lieutenant of Belfast, Mrs Fionnuala Jay O’Boyle, presented the company with the award. She said: “Northern Ireland has a rich and vibrant history of enterprise and innovation. Famous historically for linen and shipbuilding, today it is companies such as PAC Group that proudly carry the innovation torch. This company’s commitment to research and development, and to future-proofing its technology, will ensure its longevity and continued success.”

“The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious and rigorous business awards in the UK, with international regard and recognition. Invariably, it is seen as a highly significant achievement and landmark in any company’s history.”

Founded in 2018, the company has enjoyed a remarkable growth journey, now employing over 40 people at its headquarters in Dargan Crescent, Belfast. 

Holding 42 patents on the hardware and software, the company’s Hot Drape Formers and Preforming machines have been purchased by globally leading aerospace and automotive companies such as Spirit AeroSystems and McLaren Automotive.

PAC Group’s Business Development Director, Darren Leslie, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to receive a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation. It is a fantastic endorsement for our company to be recognised as world-class, and it is a welcome recognition of our team’s capabilities and hard work.”

PAC Group’s Technical Director, Gavin Rankin, added: “Innovation really is the lifeblood of PAC Group, and this award recognises just how innovative our carbon composite preforming technology is, which brings significant benefits to industries seeking to lightweight their structures to reduce carbon emissions and tackle climate change.”

The Lord Lieutenant of Belfast, Mrs Fionnuala Jay O’Boyle, paid tribute to “the people who are the heart of, and make up, PAC Group”.

She added: “This award is about your joint success, your belief in the spirit of enterprise and entrepreneurship, and your contribution to creating a more stable, sustainable, and prosperous economy for Northern Ireland.”

“PAC Group is a Belfast company and a Northern Ireland success story. The Queen’s Award for Enterprise is indeed a milestone, but it is also a signpost to future success and even greater achievement.”

For more information on PAC Group, go to pacgroup.co.uk

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