I had to retrieve my phone from work as I had lunch plans that needed to be confirmed. Plus I don't want my phone falling into the wrong hands. Chefs would take no time to read, analyse, and use against you the contents of your text message folder. Plus there would be no way they could stop themselves sending rude messages to selected contacts. Misplacing my phone did mean that I didn't have to reply to LMM's 30 pre bed text messages. I love her but texting batters my brain.
Phone retrieved I headed to the Mourne Seafood Bar for lunch with East Belfast's answer to Oliver Reed. Well, Oliver Reed meets Nikki Sixx via Will Oldham. He has a lot of free time these days as he is now a full time musician. This also meant I was buying lunch. It also means he has no idea of time and other such protocols that keep society from falling apart.
He was late.
Only by ten minutes but it does beat the full half hour he kept me waiting the last time we met for lunch. I have a problem with time keeping. I'm pretty anal about it and have the patience of a man dangling by his sack waiting for someone to cut him down. That is to say I have no patience.
The food was just perfect. I had the Langoustine Risotto (remember that's Ris-ot-oh not Ris-oh-to). It was silky smooth and just perfect with a beautiful hint of Thai spices in the background. Magnificent. The boy who writes backwards had the chowder. I'm a huge great big fan of their chowder and sometimes I sneak in on my split shift and nail a bowl before heading back to work. It's warming, creamy, substantial and just perfect for a day like today. Much like me you'll find. I don't come with bread though.
But the food wasn't the highlight of the visit. If you can cast your minds back to August when I first reviewed The Mourne Seafood Bar I said that,
"The service was: Efficient, quick, accurate, pleasant, but without any love. Where was the love? Manuel needs to be loved."
Well like any good waiter the woman that took our order and looked after us was listening as we were talking about WellDoneFillet. She probably also spotted the badges as I gave The Boy Who Writes Backwards his. As she cleared our plates away she asked which of us was responsible for WellDoneFillet. Now I could have lied. I could have said we were just fans. I could have said I had just got the badges in the post this morning (thus pushing sales a bit further - nudge nudge). I could have. But I didn't. My face and baldy head were glowing red. I looked like a Chupa Chup lolly. There was no chance of denying it. So I ponied up.
My mind was racing back to what I had posted. I knew fine rightly what I had said. But before I could stutter out any explanation she said she liked the blog and all that. Phew.....she did mention my "lack of love" comment. Crikey. What size of tip was I gonna have to leave to get out of this intact?!
I had been rumbled. Badges would save the day. Good job I carry a sack load with me. So with a combination of cash and badges I was able to leave without getting my ass served to me with a side of fries. Their chips are gorgeous by the way.
But as we left they formed a line up and offered to hug me goodbye.
TAKE THAT FAT BOY!
It could have been sarcasm, but I chose to take it as genuine love for Manuel. So in answer to my question of August the second 2007, "Where was the love?" the love is indeed at Mourne Seafood Bar.
I now rank Mourne Seafood Bar as my favorite restaurant in the city. It was always a toss up between there and Ginger.
For anyone that cares, my top 3 Belfast Restaurants are Mourne Seafood Bar, Ginger & Molly's Yard in that order. Hey where else do they offer to hug you goodbye? Now that's love........