Irish – The best local food restaurants in Belfast

If you’re coming to Belfast looking for traditional Irish grub, the city has a number of options which will leave you with a great flavour of the local food scene.

Whether it’s the catch of the day from the local seafood scene, or an Ulster fry to kick off your day, Belfast has a number of great restaurant options to get your fix of local food.

Here’s some of the best places we recommend for local food in Belfast:


With two locations in the city, Holohan’s has gained a sterling reputation for outstanding local produce and simple yet super tasty menus.

Great for a romantic dinner on the water at their Holohan’s at the Barge on the banks of the River Lagan, the other location is beside QUB and both are unlikely to disappoint for some great local grub.


As Belfast as it gets’ – says their website and it’s hard to argue with that. This cosy family run restaurant next to Lavery’s has been producing reasonably priced local food for decades – keep an eye out for their speciality seafood chowder and classic pies.

Mourne Seafood Bar

Now an institution, having started off in the seaside village of Dundrum, Mourne Seafood is the go-to establishment for many looking for a fresh catch at its Belfast city centre restaurant. Get stuck into your scampi, mussels and more, and head to Kelly’s Cellars for a pint of the black stuff after.

St. George’s Market

Popular with locals and tourists alike, St. George’s Market is a must visit for foodie folk in Belfast. Only opened on Saturdays and Sundays, tuck into a Belfast bap or some locally sourced oysters at one of the many stalls here.

The John Hewitt

Named after the famous local poet, the John Hewitt is a one-stop shop for a local Belfast experience of a few pints, a bit of grub and some tunes. Fish cakes, pork belly and burgers can be washed down here with some locally brewed craft beer.


A Lisburn Road staple here popular with students and other local residents, particularly for its 2 courses for £11 deal. Get the chicken wings – you won’t regret it.

Molly’s Yard

Easy to walk past this gem on Botanic Avenue, Molly’s has been around for years and has a popular 5-10-5 menu. They make great cocktails as well.

James Street South

Near the top of the list when it comes to places you need to try in Belfast city centre. High quality meat and fish are what you will fnd here, especially the steaks and we love the vibe of this restuarant.

The Morning Star

Another one for the few pints and a bit of grub list – the Morning Star has revamped itself in the last number of years and is producing some great quality bites in Pottingers Entry. We haven’t been yet but have heard good thing about their steaks!

Maggie May’s

If you went to college in Belfast you will know all about this local favourite. Hearty portions at all times of the day and finish off with a milkshake – often consumed after a night on the tiles to recover one’s senses. If you’re a tourist wanting to get in amongst the local vibe, check out Maggies on Botanic Avenue or Stranmillis Road.