il Pirata

Newtownards Road, Belfast

Based loosely on the informality of the Venetian Bacaro and a sense of place that was more Meat Packing District, New York than High Street, Holywood, County Down, il Pirata's concept of small rustic Italian dishes to share set to challenge the preconceptions of the Northern Irish diner on their associations with Italian restaurants and dining in Northern Ireland in general. Risky business.

As a counterpoint to the voluminous industrial sensibility we inherited and wanted to embrace, we worked hard to simplify all of the various elements so that together there was a coherence of detail and lightness of touch which delivers [to the diner] a delicate balance between the vastness of an uncompromising, edgy space and a warm and cosy eating experience that will affect more than their taste buds in a positive sense.

Constructed at around half the cost of the industry standard, Oscar&Oscar delivered a project in which we also sourced and supplied most of the finishes (lighting/floor/tiling/wood-block/heavy timbers) together with the majority of the furnishings and fittings.