A tray of colourful sliced vegetable pickles

A Self-Guided Foodie Tour of Derry ~ Londonderry, Northern Ireland

By on 24/05/2017

Before I visited Derry in Northern Ireland, I had no idea what to expect. This historic walled city has been a bit of a discovery to me, and judging from a lot of the comments I’ve received on my last Derry post, to a lot of people too.

But it wasn’t just the beauty of the city and its fascinating history that I found compelling. I also discovered that Derry is the perfect foodie destination. I visited a number of excellent restaurants and one thing they all had in common was a focus on using local produce and working directly with the local suppliers to ensure high quality ingredients. And it showed!

So here is my selection of recommended places to eat in Derry for a perfect foodie weekend indulging in beautiful and sustainable food.

The Gown Restaurant at Bishop Gate Hotel

While I was in Derry I stayed at the beautiful Bishops Gate Hotel and I checked in just in time for lunch, so the first restaurant I visited was The Gown. The hotel used to be a gentleman’s club, and the restaurant has some of the original features such as the original wall paneling, which gives the place a lot of character.

Foodie Gown Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

The Gown Restaurant. Image Source: Bishops Gate Hotel

They have a menu inspired in seasonal and locally sourced ingredients. It was hard to choose from all the delicious-sounding dishes, but someone recommended the seared pork rack chop from local meat producers William Grant & Co, with bubble and squeak croquette, and sage and onion jam. It was definitely the right choice and the perfect start to a couple of days of incredible food.

Walled City Brewery

Located in Ebrington Square, the Walled City Brewery is a fully operating brewery with a very relaxed restaurant that aims to provide both locals and visitors a ‘Taste of the North West’. And I can say that they do deliver! The craft beer is brewed in-house in very small quantities, and I’m not a beer expert but it tasted pretty good. They brew three kinds – a Derry Pale Ale (a new kind of beer), an Indian Pale Ale and, my favourite, a Stout which tasted like chocolate.

Foodie Walled City Brewery Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

Walled City Brewery

But the goodness of this place does not stop with the drinks. Their pintxos are legendary. They include perfectly sweet and sharp pickles (carrot, cucumber, cabbage) with olives, mini Thai pork cakes from the local butcher and homemade sweet chilli jam, and bbq beef rump with homemade kimchi and curry alioli.

Foodie Walled City Brewery Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

Walled City Brewery’s mini Thai pork cakes

Browns Restaurant and Champagne Lounge

If what you are looking for is a fine dining experience, Browns is the place to go. Voted Best Restaurant in Ulster in 2016, it has an excellent reputation. Head Chef Ian Orr is renowned for being focused on seasonal ingredients and for supporting local suppliers. And the food certainly lived up to expectations. I had the seven-course tasting menu that included a pre starter of chicken skin and gin & tonic jelly canapés with carrot and coriander soup; turf smoked beef with confit egg yolk, broccoli and Dart Mountain cheese; baked king scallop with egg yolk, yuzu and apple; hake with samphire and mussels; aged beef fillet with salsa verde and red onion; sorbet and for desert a delicious lavender pannacotta with strawberry, hazelnut and honeycomb. Not only was it exceptional in flavour, but the presentation was stunning. And yes, I ate it all!

Foodie Browns Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

Browns’ turf smoked beef with confit egg yolk, broccoli and Dart Mountain cheese

Foodie Browns Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

Browns’ baked king scallop with egg yolk, yuzu and apple


Recently opened, Brickwork is the new kid on the block in Derry. It’s a very relaxed and casual restaurant where you immediately feel welcome by the beaming smiles of the Brickwork team. The vibrant and youthful atmosphere of this place makes you feel like you’ve made the right decision to stop by even before you’ve looked at the menu, which is full of fun and tasty goodies.

One of their signature dishes is the steamed bao bun which is ideal for lunch and comes with a variety of fillings, prawn crackers and a side. I went for the marinated pulled pork filling and it was just great, but I did wish I’d gone for the fish fingers when I saw them. I also had a sharing platter with salt and chilli battered prawns, dragon chicken wings with blue cheese aioli, sticky bbq back ribs and a bao bun with tomato, chilli and onion. And to finish the meal off, I had an excellent cheese board with a selection of English and Irish cheeses. It’s a fun eclectic menu that takes you to different countries all at once, and I’d very happily visit over and over again.

Foodie Brickwork Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

Brickwork’s salt and chilli battered prawns, dragon chicken wings and bao bun with tomato, chilli and onion

Foodie Brickwork Restaurant Derry Londonderry Northern Ireland

Brickwork’s selection of English and Irish cheeses

Soda & Starch

Located in the heart of Derry’s Craft Village, Soda & Starch is a charming pantry and grill that serves traditional Irish comfort food and home baking that hits the spot. Its hearty, rustic and filling dishes are simply good, honest food that are big on flavour! Soda & Starch’s deco is simple but confident, as if it knows that it does not need any gimmicks as the food will speak for itself. The focus here is on high quality, seasonal ingredients from locally sourced suppliers, that create delicious authentic cuisine, rooted in Irish cooking traditions with a side of true Irish hospitality. I went with a goats cheese and beetroot salad on a ciabatta bread to start with, and a really tasty seafood chowder for mains. All beautifully flavoursome!

Goats cheese and beetroot salad with with rocket on bread

Goats cheese and beetroot salad with pickled vegetables on a ciabatta toast

Chowder with salmon mussels and chives

Fresh seafood chowder

Once again, Derry surprised me. I had no idea that the walled city had so much to offer as a foodie destination, and I feel like I’ve missed out on it all this time. Now that I know, there are lots of other restaurants that I would like to go back and try, and I may just do that over the summer.

For details on things to do, where to stay and how to get to Derry, check out my post 48 Hours in the Historic Walled City of Derry~Londonderry.

If you’d like to explore further afield, here is a great road trip in Northern Ireland from Jill at Reading The Book:

Discover Northern Ireland’s beautiful Causeway Coast

And if this hasn’t convinced you yet, here are 5 reasons why you will love Northern Ireland.

Book Accommodation in Derry


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  1. Reply



    Awesome- would love to try the new kind of beer…Derry Pale Ale sounds intriguing! We’re in Ireland later this year and will probably visit N Ireland as well! This gives me some good motivation 🙂 Love your photos, btw – gorgeous!

    • Reply



      Thanks Katie! I’m glad you liked both the post and the photos. I’m not a huge fan of pale ales generally but I have to say I really enjoyed the Derry PA. You’ll have to try it when you go. If you are planning to do a road trip in N Ireland, Derry is a great starting point for the Causeway Coastal Road, that will of course take you to the Giant’s Causeway 🙂

  2. Reply



    Oh wow this is amazing! I love seeing posts about food, lucky I ate before reading this, I would be starving otherwise! Great post! 🙂

    • Reply



      Thanks Ashleigh! I’m so happy you enjoyed it. It’s always a good idea to read foodie posts with a full stomach. Hehe

  3. Reply

    Cheryl Howard


    This looks so yummy! Food tours are one of my favourite ways to explore a place. <3

    • Reply



      Thanks Cheryl! Mine too. I think you can learn a lot about a culture through food. 🙂
      Ps. It was all delicious!

  4. Reply



    Oh this all sounds amazing. This is making me hungry right now. What a great way to discover a new destination, through food. Yum!

    • Reply



      Thanks Diana. I think food is a great way to get to know a destination. Especially when it’s delicious! 😊

  5. Reply

    Olivia Dejeu


    I have seen Derry in your content and it looks enticing 😀 I think it could be great for a weekend getaway, even from London 🙂


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Hi! I’m Teresa, a London-based traveller on a mission to explore the world through deeper travel and more meaningful local experiences. I’m a lover of adventure, the outdoors and everything food related, and I’m always looking for ways to make a positive impact through responsible and sustainable travel. I’d love to inspire you to do the same, so come along for the ride!

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