Tribal Burger to open in Belfast creating 20 jobs

by John Mulgrew

Tribal Burger’s Paul and Elaine Catterson

Tribal Burger’s Paul and Elaine Catterson

A husband and wife team is hoping to shake up the high-end Belfast burger market with a new restaurant creating up to 20 jobs.

Paul and Elaine Catterson are set to bring their years of experience in fine dining and food trucks to Belfast’s Botanic Avenue with Tribal Burger.

The restaurant is focusing on top quality, freshly ground beef from a range of cuts.

Mr Catterson says around £180,000 is being invested in the new business.

“My background is in restaurants. I was originally head chef in Shu,” he said.

“We then started with street food in Dublin, and still operate Burger Republic in Dublin, and (work with) a few other private clients down there.

“I wanted to get out of the fine dining, restaurant game. Burgers seemed an easier game.”

He says the business will be focusing on the “quality of the raw product”, and will blend and grind a mixture of chuck, brisket and rump of beef on site.

“The meat is from Richard McGreevy in Downpatrick, and we will have brioche from French Village, plus all the local produce we can find. There will be simple, home-cut chips, sweet pot fries, as well as a vegan burger.”

One of its vegan burgers includes smoked beetroot, chickpea and houmous.

“We are going to try and provide a good quality product at a reasonable price, and tap into a market, like students, bars in the area.

“We hope everyone will eat a burger at some stage, and that they go to Tribal.”

And if all goes well, the firm could look to expand further with other locations outside Belfast.

“Obviously, at the end of the day, if Tribal goes well, we are looking at opening more sites. Maybe we could go to different cities or towns.”

The burger spot is also planning to serve alcoholic, including a range of craft beer, and milkshakes.

Mr Catterson said customers will normally pay between £8 and £10 for a meal.

And he says he welcomes the competition from other well-established food spots in the area, including Bubbacue and burrito chain Boojum.

“I think it’s a good thing. The more high-end fast food joints that are there, the more people will come into the area.

“If I could take what Boojum can’t handle, I’d be very happy.”

Tribal will also compete with Belfast burger joints such as Pablo’s and Five Guys.

The restaurant is currently recruiting a mixture of both kitchen and serving staff.

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