The Caterer

Beannchor Group opens £1.25m chicken restaurant and live music venue in Belfast

27 November 2013
Beannchor Group opens £1.25m chicken restaurant and live music venue in Belfast

Located in the city's Cathederal Quarter, a four-storey, 18th century building has been restored at a cost of £1.25m to create a bar and live music venue called The Dirty Onion and an upstairs free-range rotisserie chicken restaurant, Yard Bird. The property was previously used as a bonded spirit warehouse from 1921.

The interior with exposed wooden beams and original brick walls provides a nod to the building's past.

Working in partnership with multi-award winning cultural centre An Droichead, and Jameson Irish Whiskey, The Dirty Onion will offer a modern take on a traditional Irish pub, with a weekly changing music programme and the service of hearty traditional lunches.

Meanwhile, Yard Bird will serve local, free-range chicken cooked in the restaurant's Brazilian rotisserie oven imported from Italy, alongside a range of side dishes, craft beers and other drinks. Bookings will not be taken.

Bill Wolsey, managing director of Beannchor described the new ventures as something "new and exciting" for the Northern Ireland social and cultural scene. "The opening of The Dirty Onion and Yard Bird this week follows years of work behind the scenes to breathe new life into one of Belfast's most beautiful buildings," he said. "The old bonded warehouse that houses the two venues is one of only three wood-ridge buildings in Ireland; it has been unoccupied for quite some time now, so it is very exciting to watch its reincarnation take shape.

"We want to offer an alternative to the modern music venues in Belfast city centre; somewhere that people come not only to be entertained but to get involved and be part of creating the atmosphere.

The two businesses are the latest in a line of new additions to the burgeoning Beannchor portfolio. following the opening of high-end artisan bakery, Patisserie Mimi earlier this month and its neighbour, The National Grande Café Bar, which launched in September.

The Beannchor Group boasts a portfolio of more than 50 pubs, hotels and restaurants across Northern Ireland, including the five-star Merchant hotel in Belfast. This latest series of new business launches have created more than 90 jobs, with a total investment of around £2m.

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