Our Story

How Bia Came to Be

Old Culturlann

An Chultúrlann opens its doors.

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich opens its doors in 1991, the same year Bia’s owner Oisín is born. The cross-community Irish language centre is named after 19th century Presbyterian businessman and Gaelic revivalist Robert Shipboy McAdam and 20th century Gaelic scholar Cardinal Tomás Ó Fiaich.

Foireann an Cháife Glas in 1998

An Caifé Glas opens.

The building is home to Belfast’s first Irish medium secondary school, Coláiste Feirste and also houses a café, ‘An Caifé Glas’, the Green Café. It quickly becomes a hub for local Irish speakers and learners.

Renovated Culturlann - Mal McCann

A new lease of life.

After 20 years, the café and Cultúrlann close their doors for an 11-month renovation project. The building is re-opened by President Mary McAleese in November 2011. (Photo courtesy of Mal McCann)

Bia at An Chultúrlann - Mal McCann

Bia opens its doors.

After almost 30 years known as An Caifé Glas, Caifé Feirste and Caifé na Cultúrlainne, Oisín re-opens as Bia. Previously a manager under Caifé Feirste’s owners, Oisín and the team carry the torch for quality homemade food, but with new menu and energy. (Photo courtesy Mal McCann, Irish News)

Bia hosts first wedding.

In 2018, Bia held its first wedding. The champagne reception was held in the adjoining Gerard Dillon Gallery before 90 guests sat to enjoy a specially designed wedding menu, followed by dancing throughout the night.

Bia Restaurant Belfast

More to come.

We are working on highlights of our history – stay tuned for more memories – you may see yourself in a photo or two…