Thursday, 26 July 2012

The Italian Job: Il Pirata

I recently paid a visit to one of Belfast’s best kept (relatively new) secrets. Il Pirata in Ballyhackamore, situated in the building that once housed KFC, is without a doubt the finest Italian I have had in Belfast.
We’ve come a long way with what we can offer as a city in the past few years and the standard of eateries has not been left behind in these improvements. Belfast now boasts a culture, arts and food scene to rival any European City, but we still hold that grotty charm that I love about this place.

Il Pirata is an authentic Italian restaurant that serves far more than pizza and pasta, I would highly recommend the polenta chips, they were scrumptious. On offer are a range of ‘small plates’ and main courses. The menu has plenty of choice without being too crowded and the portion size was good (though I would suggest ordering a side with the main meal)
I had the salmon and it was delicious, perfectly cooked and the flesh just flaked off and almost melted in my mouth. Everyone else in my party of 7 was also impressed with their dishes of choice. The atmosphere was casual and the wait staff were attentive and could offer good advice about what to order. (it took forever to get the bill though)
I will definitely be back to this restaurant and I am so glad that Belfast is finally coming into its own as a city and 2012 has most certainly been ‘our time, our place’. Get used to the increased numbers of tourists wandering about with cameras because I have a feeling we are only going to be seeing more of them!

Friday, 20 July 2012

The Water Sustains Me

I am so thankful I live on an island. There's something about the water that sustains me, there's something about the river that restores my soul and I love it!

 Today on my way home I took a walk down by the docks. The clouds were streaked pink coming off Cave Hill and I sat looking at Samson and Goliath reflected in the water until they faded into black to mirror the sky.

It's so quiet down there and it's mindblowing to imagine the noise that was there 100 years ago, the absence of rivet on steel is almost eerie. So as I sat and watched the last streaks of light fade from the sky I played this song [below] out of my phone, and at that moment I was so happy I could have just let the river carry me away. I am so blessed to live in this battered little city. I love its grotty charm and its wonderful people, I love its history and the future it has infront of it. Thank you Belfast for being so wonderfully you!

All that I have is a river
The river is always my home
The water sustains me without even trying
The water can't drown me, I'm done
With my dying
Where the blue of the sea meets the sky
And the big yellow sun [cranes] leads me home