Bite Me, Brussels.

Reviewing food for the foreigners, without all the fluff.

Archive for January, 2009

The chocolate cake was sumptuous

Posted by Pi on January 31, 2009

Our picture does not do it justice:

chocolate cake

I tried l’Ultime Atome‘s chocolate cake (~5 euros) the other day, and it was extremely good.  The flavors and textures hit pleasure central somewhere between tasting like an American brownie and a smooth and rich Belgian chocolate mousse.  The vanilla sauce wasn’t even necessary.  I’d go for this again, for sure.

L’Ultime Atome
St. Boniface
Languages: French, English

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Fine Filipino Fried Chicken

Posted by Pi on January 26, 2009

I could really go for some fried chicken right about now.  I’m reminded of the kind I got in Chicago at a Filipino restaurant in December:


Mmmmm, it was so delectable, light, and crispy.  Sure beats Hector’s Chicken.  Brussels needs to upgrade on its soul food, Filipino or not.

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Succulent meat, but I didn’t like the balls

Posted by Pi on January 25, 2009

The Indian restaurant at the northwest corner of Place Jourdan by the hotel gets great marks for entrees and service, particularly given the difficulty of finding good Indian around Brussels.  Conveniently located at one of Brussels’ main squares doesn’t hurt, too.

We got there early at 7pm, from in the middle of yet another Brussels winter rain, complete with surprisingly un-Belgian chilling wind.  The cozy space inside, with its candles and velvet hues, immediately warmed me up, though one mint tea did more of the trick.

I wasn’t daring that night and didn’t go for the vindaloo.  Instead I had a satisfying stew-like dish (~13 eu) with very tender and just as tasty beef, cooked with spinach, tomatoes, bay leaves, and various other Indian spices.  Served with rice and nan along with some red wine, it couldn’t go wrong.

Since I hadn’t ordered a starter,  I still wanted a little something more and went for dessert: gulab jamun.  I was hoping for a hot, dense and rich version of those doughnut-like sweets in saffron syrup, but it did not deliver.  My two balls weren’t hot, the consistency reminded me of something a bit old, and overall it wasn’t anything special.  Even the dame blanche didn’t look so great.  After eating the main meal here, I’d advise heading to the SuperGB in the square to buy some single-serving Haagen Dazs instead.

Nevertheless the experience overall was commendable, and I would go again.  The service was excellent, although maybe that was because we ate early, as the place filled up between 8-9pm.  As Indian restaurants go in Belgium, this one’s not too shabby.

Main dishes:  A-
Dessert: C
Prices: B+
Languages:  French, English

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Let’s eat cow stomach!

Posted by Pi on January 18, 2009

Hong Kong Delight
Rue Sainte-Catherine, 35
1000 Brussels

This relatively small and austere establishment is about as close as you can get to good and authentic Cantonese cuisine in the city of Brussels.  It’s great for Belgian standards but lacks the best quality found elsewhere.

However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go to at least try something you can’t get anywhere else.  Try the cow stomach and jellyfish (each 6-10 eu), for example.

The beef tripe was perfectly tender and not chewy at all, and the jellyfish, or meduse, mixed with cucumber and carrot also had that great crunch you can’t find with any other food.  For these and other more common dishes, perhaps with stir-fried beef, chicken, or vegetables (9-14 eu), the flavors always shout — almost too much, in fact.  All their food tends to be two shades too salty for my tastes.  I wonder if that’s just me, or if the cooks try to cater to the locals who want loads of sodium.  When I asked for extra spicy flavors, they did deliver, though, and I appreciate the care taken for my order.

While not the best Hong Kong food in the world, it at least has the honor of being the best in Brussels that I’ve found so far.  The attentive service makes up for some of the problems it may have in the food, or in the surroundings that feature hanging roasted duck.  When I try the roasted meats to-go one day, I’ll be sure to review them here.

Food: B
Price: A-
Service: A
Atmosphere: B
Languages spoken:  Cantonese, Mandarin, French, English

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