Tuesday, 8 June 2010


all things sweet

we tried all manner of sweet things in brugge. in fact, it would have been impossible not to. every third shop was a chocolaterie or a biscuit or a waffle shop. in the cafes, coffee was always served accompanied by a truffle, a square of cake or a really delicious mini pancake full of jam. we tried truffles from dumon - dark chocolate with cinnamon, milk chocolate with a pear fondant, dark chocolate with a centre of advocat (egg liquer), dark chocolate with marzipan and orange peel, pale green pistachio marzipan in white chocolate. at another shop we had pralines and slices of sticky oranges dipped in dark chocolate. there were lace cookies – crispy crunchy and brittle like caramel in the mouth. one day we had waffles for breakfast. they were light and fluffy with a dusting of icing sugar. i personally prefer the sticky, substantial and dense liege waffle which i was unable to find both in brugge and brussels. at the eurostar terminal in brussels we bought some pierre marcolini and sampled the dark chocolate truffle which was intensely chocolatey and had notes of dark amber honey.

assiette blanche

Sunday, 6 June 2010

assiette blanche

on our last night in brugge o treated me to a delicious three course at 
assiette blanche which was recommended to us by our server at the prestige patisserie. for starters o had the soft shell crab that came perched on a salad and i had a carpaccio of salmon with white asparagus, herbs and lemon. we sampled a bit of each and loved them. we both had the same entrée – a fillet of sea bass with mashed potatoes and butter sauce. the entrée was beautifully presented with the fillet seated on mashed potatoes, garnished with softened and bruised cherry tomatoes on the vine surrounded by a buttery sauce flecked with chives. needless to say, it tasted as good as it looked. we finished dinner on what i think is the ultimate summer dessert, homemade vanilla ice-cream flecked with tiny dots of black vanilla seed and strawberries.  

     philipstockstraat 23 - 25| 8000 brugge

prestige patisserie

o had lunch at a quaint patisserie called ‘prestige’ one afternoon which would have been more comfortable in england with its flowery wallpaper and china tea sets. his salmon club sandwich was immaculately presented. discs of white toast holding in layers of rocket lettuce, a creamy egg mayonnaise and slices of smoked salmon along with potato and parsnip crisps. he claims it was the best smoked salmon club he’s ever had. a canapé of smoked salmon with crème fraiche and a small salad of fresh spritely leaves preceded the sandwich. i had a local rendition of a mocha which was really good served with a chocolate and vanilla biscuit. the service was immaculate and our server even recommended two very good restaurants for our last evening meal in brugge. i bought a baguette for lunch from (one of the very few) sandwich shops. a very satisfying wholegrain baguette with thickly sliced brie, honey and walnuts.    

 prestige |vlomingstraat 12 - 14| brugge

Saturday, 5 June 2010

belle epoque

 brugge is a charming little place over run by chocolateries and tea rooms (a peculiarity which i have yet to figure since all restaurants were tea rooms too). o and i managed to eat well without falling into touristy traps except on one occasion where i had remarkably good brown shrimp croquettes and moule frite but o didn’t fare well at all as his flemish beef stew was very disappointing.

on our first afternoon we lunched at belle époque, a very quaint little brasserie/tea room whose entrance was flanked by a female mannequin who was perhaps meant to seduce but looked really uncomfortable instead. there was a set menu for twenty euros. o started with an asparagus soup, followed by steak and frites. i had the grilled scampi and a flemish fish dish for my entrée. the scampi was very fresh and was accompanied by a salad and an egg mayonnaise with cornichons. o’s asparagus soup was creamy and satisfying. my entrée of fish came in rolls resting on sautéed leeks and a light sauce which i take was light only in colour as it was very rich. the croquette potatoes were actually decorative piping’s of potato. it was excellent. o said his steak was a tad bit overdone but good all the same. dessert was a wash-out, ice cream for o with a crown of whipped cream and a smattering of ultra sweet caramel sauce and a very milky chocolate mousse with more whipped cream for me. both of us were willing to forgo the disappointing dessert in light of the overall experience.

zuidzandstraat| 43 brugge| 8000