|Belfast Woodfired Pizza|
|View from Ivory Champagne Bar|
|Camile Thai, Lisburn Road|
Christmas is definitely a time to catch up and enjoy time with friends. I'm so excited to see my chums who have moved away this year but are returning for the holidays. I've listed a lot of my old favourites to visit this holiday season, added in some new places and have some wish list eateries that I want to head to.
I love a casual post work drink and The National never fails to disappoint me. I particularly love it on a Friday night - there's always a great atmosphere. I've also recently been calling into the new Bullitt Hotel for drinks (& the best hot chocolate ever!) - it's super cool and wouldn't look out of place on any London corner. For my birthday this year, my friends and I headed to The Apartment largely for its handiness to the Christmas markets at City Hall! However, we were so presently surprised. It's had a very trendy makeover and the staff were so lovely. We sat and watched the world go by at the window with bottles of prosecco and sharing plates. A genuinely lovely experience! If you work up a thirst from lots of shopping, the new Ivory Champagne bar in House of Fraser is one to visit. With stunning views of the iconic Victoria Square festive decorations, there is no better way to catch up than over a glass of champagne & some macarons. (Also, I think everything is priced so well at The Ivory making it really accessible).
Of course, the Christmas Market is one to visit for the atmosphere alone (and my friend tells me the Greek Gyros is the thing you MUST try this year!) but I also loved visiting the brand new River House Yard. Located on Skipper Street between The National and The Spaniard, the mini market is full of fabulous local food retailers housed inside shipping containers. My must try from River House Yard is Belfast Woodfired Pizza. I recently visited their sit down restaurant on the Lisburn Road (beside The Albany) and it was incredible. Gourmet style pizza with surprising toppings - utterly divine. If something quick but ultra tasty is what you are after, try Camile Thai on the Lisburn Road. They do mostly takeout but have a few seats to sit in if you are lucky enough to catch one. I cannot describe how fresh this food is. You'll never want to eat normal takeaway Chinese again! A great option for a girly catchy up - especially as you can eat it in the comfort of your own home!
Again, if you are out shopping and want some sustenance, the newly opened Zizzi italian in Victoria Square is a great option. I've been twice over the past few weeks and I think it's tasty (fabulous salads!) and great value for money.
If you want more traditional fayre, my go tos are always Home and Deane's (let's be honest, you get a good feed is any of Michael's restaurants but I have a particular fondness for the Ulster Hall and Lisburn Road variations). Plus make sure to check out my recent review of the Bull & Ram in Ballynahinch- well worth the journey.
On my 'to try' list over Christmas are two new places - Noble in Holywood (all locally sourced tasty dishes) and Yugo, a new contemporary Asian restaurant located close to City Hall.
P.S. if you are looking for more things to do over the Christmas period in Belfast, I worked on this article with Go Euro. Go have a little nosey at it!