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Belfast Restaurant Week to get underway

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Rebecca Kincade on September 30, 2014 - 10:20 am in News

Food lovers are licking their lips in anticipation of the return of Belfast Restaurant Week, which starts this coming Saturday (October 4) and continues until October 11.

Belfast Restaurant Week is part of a dedicated tourism development initiative by Belfast City Council designed to develop and promote the city’s important restaurant and hospitality sector. The initiative celebrates the superb food offer across the city and supports a sector which contributes significantly to the competitiveness and economic prosperity of the city.

Last year, eateries taking part in Belfast Restaurant Week attracted 49,000 visitors from the Greater Belfast area.  Average spend was almost £21 per person, generating an overall income of more than £1 million for participating businesses/  Some restaurants recorded an increase of up to 20 per cent in turnover during the week.

According to the British Hospitality Association, the hospitality industry is the UK’s fourth largest industry, in employment terms.  In Belfast, it directly employs around 16,000 people, or seven percent of the population, and generates almost £800 million GVA for the local economy.

This year more than 60 restaurants right across the city are taking part, offering special lunch and dinner menus as well as a series of mouthwatering special events for food lovers of all ages.

The Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Nichola Mallon, said:  “Belfast’s restaurant scene has much to be proud of and boasts some of the most talented, driven and enthusiastic chefs and food heroes.  Belfast Restaurant Week is an ideal opportunity for this talent to showcase itself, and for food lovers, from the city and beyond, to enjoy the results and variety of great food options that Belfast has on offer.”

“Belfast City Council is delighted to once again give its support to the city’s many restaurants, cafes, gastro-pubs and hotels, all of whom make a major contribution to the local economy as well as creating significant employment opportunities across the city.”

Belfast Restaurant Week is supported by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, through the Northern Ireland Regional Food Programme, the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and Visit Belfast.

Anne McMullan, Marketing and Communications Director of Visit Belfast, said: “Belfast’s vibrant restaurant scene is an important tourism offering that helps attract many thousands of visitors to the city as well as making their experience more enjoyable.

“Belfast Restaurant Week is all about promoting the abundance of great eating out options, showcasing our local produce and encouraging everyone to eat out more frequently, sample new menus and experience the variety of choice on offer all providing a real taste of Belfast.”

This year’s Belfast Restaurant Week kicks off with the return of the popular ‘Taste And Dine’ event, which will transform the lawns of City Hall into a village of pop-up restaurants this Saturday and Sunday (October 4 and 5).  Many local restaurants and producers will be taking part, and there will be numerous talks and demonstrations, as well as live music over the course of the weekend.  Special guest on Saturday will be renowned food writer and broadcaster Tom Parker-Bowles, who will be talking about his food experiences and demonstrating his own culinary skills.  Last year, the event attracted 12,000 people over the two days.

For further information on this, and other events and special offers during the third annual Belfast Restaurant Week, log on to www.visit-belfast.com, follow /belfastrestaurantweek on Facebook, /Belfast RW on Twitter, or contact the Visit Belfast Welcome Centre on .


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