A Guided Tour of Belfast with Jordan

A Guided Tour of Belfast with Jordan

Today we're talking to Belfast native Jordan ahead of his set at AVA Festival. He shows us around the best places to go in the city and gives us some hidden places to go. Take a look below.

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Belfast born and bred, Jordan has made a name for himself in the local house and techno scene, sharing the bill with DJs like Pete Tong and Octave One. He also runs his own record label, Nocturne while Holding down one Belfast's most loved underground house, techno and disco nights as one half of the Night Institute alongside Timmy Stewart. He showed us around his hometown before his set in the Boiler Room at Belfast's AVA Festival.

Tickets for AVA Festival can be found at their website.

First place you go when you’re back from touring?

I think if you've been elsewhere for the weekend and still fancy a cure, then the best places to hide out for me are local pubs. Maybe that's just my personal taste, but the darker the better. The Garrick Bar is great for a Sunday daytime drink, as is the Pavilion on Belfast's Ormeau Road. Both will often have DJ's playing in the background on a Sunday.

The Garrick is the favoured watering hole of Jordan, a stripped back classic pub
PHOTO CREDIT: Pinterest

Best place for a first date?

Most likely you’re going for food or drink, right? When it comes to food, a visit to Yugo wouldn’t go a miss. It's pan-Asian inspired, and from Bao Buns to their unique Korean Fried Chicken, they're ticking all the boxes. Try the Son-in-Law egg and a tin of Asian in one of the unique restaurant surroundings in town. You’ll look dead cultured too.
If you’re off for a bit of Dutch courage, I'd recommend calling into the brand new Marcus Ward on the Dublin Road on a Friday night. Some of the best local DJ talent mix with a regularly refreshed cocktail menu. Recommended for fans of hip-hop, funk, disco and gin, so no awkward silences!

Yugo in Belfast is a favourite if you like pan-Asian food at a great price
PHOTO CREDIT: Yugo

What’s a hidden gem in the city?

Town Square would be a leading light in the new generation of startup coffee shops, appealing to student's and young professionals in equal measure. Located in Belfast's thriving Botanic area, near the gardens they do a great lunch and are now licensed. If you don't fancy one of their wide range of coffee types, you can grab a beer with your food.

Where would you go to chill out?

Sun for more than a few hours is a rarity in Belfast, but if you catch it, make your way instantly to AM:PM Treehouse Bar. It's exterior is completely unique amongst Belfast's grey urban landscape, and once you're on the rooftop, you'll feel like you're in one of Europe's cultural hubs. The bonus is that the sun is so rare, you may even get a seat!
Take a walk through Belfast's Botanic Gardens, with a detour through the tropical ravine. it's certainly an interesting stroll and in the heart of Belfast's Queens Quarter, so take a nosey at the beautiful university building too... I think it's just for show. You'd barely believe that some of Belfast's biggest raves have been happening across the road for the best part of 20 years.

mens street style belfast botanic gardens-min
The Belfast Botanical Gardens are a fantastic outing if you're looking for a place to chill out
PHOTO CREDIT: The Belfast Botanical Gardens

Where serves the best breakfast?

Harlem Cafe, just off Belfast City Centre, besides the iconic Ulster Hall is a unique hideaway for breakfast or brunch. It's one of the quirkier cafes in the city in terms of decor, and certainly a cosy stop off to catch up with old friends or to bring someone new to the city. Permit Room is probably my favourite brunch spot. Niall, the owner certainly knows a hundred and one ways to serve an egg, baked is a speciality!

Where’s your favourite place to have a quiet drink?

Depending on your definition of quiet, The Black Box is the creative hub in the heart of Belfast's Cathedral Quarter. Hosting spoken word, poetry, magic and live music, it's 'green room' bar hosts about 30, and their wide range of craft beers make it the perfect way to wile away an afternoon. Come evening time, you're within stumbling distance from the Latin-inspired Spaniard Bar. Rum is their thing, and it's often very busy, but it's one of the most character-enriched bars in Belfast, so definitely pop in for a pint.

The Black Box in Belfast provides entertainment as well as a selection of drinks
PHOTO CREDIT: The Black Box

Best place to go clubbing?

Somewhat biased here but check out our AUX & The Night Institute parties at Foundry on the Dublin Road for the house, disco & techno heads. Thompsons Garage has also been running for about 22 years, and Lavery's Complex has some more alternative but accessible DJ's playing some stuff you're bound to know in their pool room!

Favourite place to go shopping?

If you’re looking for a one-stop location for retail, make a bee-line for Victoria Square. They’ve got everything under one roof, from the reliable street style of Urban Outfitters and Topshop to brands like Remus Uomo and Calvin Klein.

Victoria Square is one of the best places to go shopping in Belfast and has a selection of brands
PHOTO CREDIT: Victoria Square

How would you describe your city’s style?

We’re a laid back bunch, there’s no pretence, and you can certainly ask for directions without a dirty look. If you’re talking about dress sense, the kids love their retro sports gear at the minute. I’m too uncool - I’ll stick with all black everything.

One song that sums up your city?

Boney M - Belfast of course.

Jordan headlines AVA Festival in Belfast
PHOTO CREDIT: Jordan McCuaig

To keep up to date with all of Jordan's news head to his Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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