Lily’s Pub & Eatery, Lisburn Road, Belfast

- For the second time we tried dropping by Shu after work with no reservation, but those pesky graduates were having a proper meal with mummy and daddy before they live on beans and those noodles you get with about five packets of flavouring.  The maitre de suggested among others, Lilly’s. 

We ventured into the restaurant area of Lilly’s and were so taken aback by how dark it was, we turned on our heels and sat at a table in the bar. 

Now I didn’t expect that the table service would be as good as the restaurant, but jaysus, it was painful. Mainly to do with the drinks which ensured we didn’t get DVT and had to walk to the bar regularly when a waiter couldn’t be found.

First up a starter of  salt & chilli squid with napa slaw, which was grand, though the identical dish in Cayenne is far superior and has some actual ‘slaw’. 

Chicken wings were finger lickin’ good and would’ve been amazing had they come with a decent blue cheese sauce. Instead I had a ramekin of mayo with a few hard blue cheese chunks in it.  Despite my best attempt at mashing the cheese into the mayo, it was still tasteless. 

Still waiting for drinks that were ordered with the meal. Trip to the bar. 

Drinks came and one of them was wrong (but not worth making a fuss about), then main course came:  moules frites without the frites. Wait a few mins. Call over waiter for frites. Yup, they’re on the way. Couple more minutes and they were served in a mini chip basket and put on the bare table. 

Start eating mussels. Find waiter to see if an empty bowl for shells were coming or do we just put them on the table?

Order more drinks. Tuck into the chorizo and pea risotto which was fine, though could’ve been a more warm and wet. Just how I like my… risotto.  

Another drink order.  Wait a few minutes. They don’t have the ingredients for the special cocktail.

Couldn’t be arsed staying for dessert when so chased down a waiter for a bill. Charged twice for drinks since we must have confused them when we reminded them they were missing.  Chased down the waiter again. 

I’m guessing they were massively understaffed as the waiter was lovely and apologetic. 

Would we go back? I’d be back for the cocktails (when you can get them) and the wings - everything else was just ok. Here’s hoping they can hire a few more staff.

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