arguably the best

James Street South
21 James Street South
Belfast, BT2 7GA – Northern Ireland
(28) 904 34 310
£££ – Modern Classic

Was recommended this restaurant by in-flight magazine (EASY JET) – about 9 years ago.
First time I went there was in company of 22 men!!!! The restaurant had only been open for a couple of months. Nobody I talked to had been there. So when we where going to have our Christmas 2006 dinner with our suppliers I chose this place. We had a brilliant evening and with the restaurant not being that big – we nearly had it all to ourselves.
Has returned to the restaurant a couple of times after that and they have every time recognize me as the hostesses of that noisy group – but I think the real reason is the amount the bill came too, after drinking champagne and Cloudy Bay Te Koko Sauvigon Blanc – today it comes £52.00.

Living in Belfast – I where spoiled with choices of good restaurants – amazingly !! Belfast isn’t that big – 280.000 people – and they all love their food.

It’s quite minimalist place and most guest are over 35 – when I’m not there.
Also a hidden gem – on a back street behind City Hall. 3 course dinner – no wine – £40 per person.
It’s a smart and chic restaurant – service is top class. Would say arguably the best restaurant in Belfast – an award winning place. Using local Northern Irish produce – like Antrim lamb – terrific cooking and fantastic presentation. Don’t pass on a side order of champ — mashed potatoes with spring onions and lots of butter. Wine list excellent.
A restaurant that has it’s place in this upcoming modern city by name Belfast.

Photos provided by:

diva canapes

To start a party with – a sumptuous meal made miniature. The chutney can be made weeks ahead. It also goes well with meats and perfect on a cheese board. We used this for an very important lunch buffet and they went down quickly. We made hundreds and hundreds of them. A bit of a work up when have do them “a la minute” – but for a private dinner party – easy!

Filo Tartlets with Seared Duck and Tomato-Sesame Chutney
Makes 20 canapes to serve 10 – Preperation: 1 hour – Cooking: 1 hour

filo tartletes
12 filo pastry sheets
25 gr butter, melted

duck filling
2 duck breast
15 ml light soy sacue
5 ml clear honey

tomato-sesame chutney
250 gr ripe tomatoes
90 ml white wine vinegar
85 caster sugar
a few fennel seeds
2,5 ml curry powder
2 cardamom pods, split
a pinch each cayenne pepper and ground ginger
15 ml sesame seeds, toasted

coriander leafs or rings of thinly cut leek.

1. Do the chutney. Skin the tomatoes by cutting an X in the bottom of each and drop into a pan with boiling water for a 1-2 min. Then place them in a bowl of could water to refresh for 1 min before peeling off the skins. Roughly chop!
Heat up the vinegar and the sugar over low heat, stirring with wooden spoon until sugar has dissolved. Raise the heat and add the remaining gradients expect the sesame seeds. Simmer for about 30 min until thickened. Cool and remove the cardamom pods.

2. Preheat oven to 180C
Brush 1 filo pastry sheet with some of the melted butter. Use a sharp knife to cut the pastry into 5cm squares. Stack 4 squares on top of each; so that the finished stack has a star-like appearance. Push the pastry firmly into a mini muffin so it gets a flat bottom. Repeat the process with the remaining pastry. Bake for 6-8 min until golden. Be careful when removing from the tins and cool on a rack.

3. Preheat the oven to 200C
Prepare the duck – remove the fat and the skin – use a very sharp nice to pull it away for the flesh. Mix soy sauce and honey – brush the breast on both sides. Sear the breast in a pre-heated dry frying pan for about 2-3 min on each side – no oil. Then roast in the oven for about 10 min. Rest and cool

4. Just before serving: slice the duck breasts thinly, place 2 slices in each tartlet. Top with the chutney and scatter with toasted sesame seeds and coriander leafs or leek rings.  (tip regarding the leek rings – when cut store them in cold water in the fridge so they go really crisp) Or both!

photo provided by: georgia glynn smith