Bloggacue | Bubbacue Is Back


Bubbacue arrived on the Belfast food scene a few years back during the boom of the trendy street foodery. What started as a rather rustic "theme" restaurant, has evolved into a sleek model of fast-casual food.

I visited Bubbacue many times in its original incarnation. I was charmed by the down-to-earth approach and style and the meat-centric menu kept a carnivore like myself very happy. Heaped helpings of juicy pulled pork, creamy Mac n Cheese and moreish corn bread were served in enamel plates and their zingy homemade lemonade arrived in jam jars. This was something new and different, despite it being intentionally homespun and vintage inspired.

However, what was once original becomes obsolete with every restaurant or cafe jumping on the rustic food bandwagon; and with any good business, one must adapt to the change in the market.

Tools of the trade 
This change came about in a complete refresh of the interiors and processes in Bubbacue. The gingham oil cloths and enamelware are replaced with modern benches and recycled paper packaging. The model of the business has changed, with focus on service and efficiency, but never at the cost of the quality of the food.

I recently attended the official relaunch event. Truthfully, I had visited before after their initial refurbishment and felt it had lost some of its quaint appeal. While I could not fault the food, it was the same delicious mix of meat, sides and drinks, I missed the quirkiness of the original. On visiting again, I was delighted to be proved wrong.

Creator and founder John Blisard explained the evolution of Bubbacue and the reasoning behind the change in look and process. They want to ensure a fast and efficient level of service, an expanded menu; offering more healthy and less carnivorous option and a relaxed, casual space to enjoy your food.

Slicing up the juicy beef brisket, smoked on site in Bubbacue's own smoker.

The look is now more urban than ranch, eschewing the cliche for a pared down take on a barbecue fast-food restaurant.

We were treated to the full menu and I indulged with my usual level of restraint and decorum; meaning I stuffed myself with my favourites.

A Rogue-sized portion
I opted for my usual pulled pork with sides of skinny fries, Mac n cheese and Texan rice, washed down with their super sour but super refreshing lemonade. And as I wasn't driving as I usually am at foodie events, I sampled Bubbacue's very own Bubbabrew, a locally produced craft beer.

My Better Half Caelan, my blog wife Ruth from Willow Lane & yours truly.

While Bubbacue may have had it's beginnings as a pop-up restaurant, it has firmly cemented itself as a Belfast favourite. There is no denying #BubbaIsBack.

Thanks to the kind team at Bubbacue and JPR for inviting me.

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