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Something for everyone at the Wolf & Whistle

The steak ciabatta is just one standout item from an impressive and extensive menu The steak ciabatta is just one standout item from an impressive and extensive menu
By Michael Jackson

FOR many of our readers, the Wolf & Whistle will be a familiar haunt and, indeed, descriptions of the food, the décor, and the fine staff are never far from the pages of this publication. However, one thing that can never be said enough about this establishment is that it has an inimitable ability to please all comers.

Housed in a building recognised by many from the past as the Whitefort, the popular Andersonstown venue has changed hands a number of times over the years, and has seen more than its fair share of makeovers, but since rebranding as the Wolf & Whistle in 2016 it has undergone a remarkable change, becoming virtually all things to all people.

Whether you are after a bite to eat, a quiet pint, live music, or live sports, there are few venues that do it all so well. For three colleagues and myself, Friday lunch was the occasion for our most recent visit.
As ever, we were greeted and shown to our seats by familiar and experienced members of staff, whose consummate service has become synonymous with the Wolf & Whistle. We were served our drinks in short order and had soon picked out a few favourites from the extensive menu.

To start, a colleague and I went halfers on two of the standout starters: the salt and chilli chicken strips and the Cajun potato wedges. The delicately sliced chicken was covered in an incredibly moreish honey chilli dressing. In terms of the chilli, the chef opted for a subtle approach, and while I had initially expected a fiery affair, the balance between the heat, the sweet and the savoury was a remarkable success. The wedges were more of a no-nonsense dish: huge cuts of potato dusted in Cajun spices and covered in a generous helping of cheese, bacon bits, and a sprinkling of sharp scallion.

Around the table there were other mouthwatering contrasts: American fried chicken wings for one, and a dainty plate of chilli and garlic prawns for another. The wings were fried to perfection with a taste to match. The plump prawns were beautifully plated, delicate and bursting with flavour.

For the main, I went for the chargrilled chicken breast, which was seared to perfection and served with crispy tobacco onions, champ, and a creamy peppered sauce – comfort food doesn’t come much better.

A colleague opted for the beef ciabatta; – melt-in-your-mouth steak pieces, fried onion and the aforementioned peppered sauce, all served in a fresh Italian roll. This main comes with a choice of tasty sides including the French fries, which made up the order on this occasion.

The expertly battered fish and chunky chips was an obvious choice for one of our party, and it was one they were happy to have made. This classic dish is widely available, but rarely so well executed.

The final main was the beef sizzler, which – beyond the incredible depth of flavour – was visually an absolute head-turner. Strips of beef, peppers and onions are served on cast iron skillet, which noisily arrive in a mini-plume of steam and smoke. The dish was packed full of flavour and spice and is served with fresh tortillas, sour crème and guacamole and a choice of side.

With just enough room left, our party shared the old-school jam and coconut sponge, chocolate orange cheesecake and pavlova for dessert. The sponge was light, moist and covered in custard – all flavour, no kitsch. The cheesecake was almost unbearably sweet – I say almost because it was polished off without hesitation.
The strawberry topped pavlova was light on the inside and crisp on the out.

With two courses available for £8.95 and plenty more to choose from, lunch at the Wolf & Whistle is as cost-friendly as it is appetising. The various menus – like the place itself – offer something for everyone. Attentive and helpful members of staff like Nichola and Ciarnan, who served us during our visit, make it all the more appealing.

The Wolf and Whistle,
67 Andersonstown Road, Belfast BT11 9AH
Tel: 028 9060 2210

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