Bite Me, Brussels.

Reviewing food for the foreigners, without all the fluff.

Posts Tagged ‘L’Ultime Atome’

The Ultimate Atom?

Posted by rachelinbxl on March 23, 2010

29/4/2011 I’m afraid I have to update this post as I ate here again last night with 2 friends and we were bitterly disappointed with the food. The place still has a very good choice of beer and wine, and I love the decor… but we tried the traditional beef carbonnade and though it was good, I have had better – the sauce was very runny… we also had two of the daily specials: swordfish mille feuilles which was served in an awful sweet cinnamon sauce and a very dry portion of gratin dauphinois that was charged extra. My ‘solettes’ (mini soles) in vine leaves and green curry was a sort of cooked sushi rolled in vine leaves rather than nori and served with a heated out of the pot of DL curry sauce (nothing even remotely related to proper green curry!). The desserts were also disappointing – the lemon meringue pie the least so, but the tarte tatin wasn’t half what it was last year and the tiramisu was really poor. Will not be eating here again…. what a shame!

23/03/2010 There have already been posts on l’Ultime Atome here on BiteMeBrussels. In fact, that is why I went. It intrigued me. The place has always caught my eye – its a nice building in a nice area. It’s much bigger inside than it seems from the outside. A positive tardis for food. We arrived for an early saturday lunch; most people were still on their morning coffees, so the waiters were running around with the little Illy cups and there were plenty of tables free for lunch. We didn’t really bother investigating for a good location, just took the nearest table in the non-smoking area. I realised later that this is huge.

The service is good – attentive and fast enough for such a large location. We were served by 3 different girls, but each got everything right.

I chose the lamb glazed with honey and thyme, served with potatoes. Boy was that a good choice. Cooked’a point, I don’t like my lamb too bloody.

Lamb brochetteLamb brochette glazed with honey and thyme, served with oranges, grapefruit, almonds
Gratin dauphinois

The most amazing Gratin dauphinois I have ever tasted

The meat was tender and not too sweet, despite the honey. The idea of adding the oranges and grapefruit to offset the sweetness was good, but I would have appreciated a few vegetables. However, they won me over with the potatoes. There were two ‘portions’. One looked like a slice of tarte tatin, and was just normal potatoes. The other was a true gratin dauphinois, without too much creamy sauce, but with layers of sweet potato in with the normal. Cooked to perfection and truly amazing. I confess I didn’t let my friend try much!

Vegetable linguine with fresh goats cheese

Vegetable linguine with fresh goats cheese

He had the vegetable linguine with fresh goats cheese. It was a huge bowl but he ‘just had to finish it, because it was so good’. A good mix of fresh tomato pieces, mushroom, spring onion, parsley and a light cream did indeed go well with the al dente pasta. A good Belgian edition of an Italian dish.

We shouldn’t have taken dessert too, but since my friend had just driven me to Decathlon and Aveve I decided I owed him dessert too, so I insisted. We couldn’t choose one to share, so we took two to share 😉

Cheesecake

The Ulitmate Cheesecake

Tarte Tatin

Tarte Tatin

We chose the Tarte tatin and the speculoos cheesecake. We were not disappointed. The tarte tatin was hot, crispy and melty. It could have had a touch more caramelised butter, but I felt it was better not overdone. The cheesecake was amazing. Speculoos biscuits add a real luxury touch to cheesecake. I wont go back to digestives now. The topping was rich and creamy. It even outdid the tarte francois cheesecake I had at Quartier Libre last week (see previous post). I was impressed. So was my friend. We even wondered about distracting the large number of staff and trying to make off with the entire cheesecake in the fridge by the door. But we resisted.

All in all, for 20 euros per person, an amazing meal. I will be coming back to try the hot chocolate….

L’Ultime Atome
St. Boniface

Food: A-
Atmosphere: A
Price: A-
Service: A-

Languages: French, English

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The chocolate cake was sumptuous

Posted by pieguybxl 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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L’Ultime Atome: redux

Posted by pieguybxl on December 15, 2008

Every time I go to L’Ultime Atome at St. Boniface, I hear and have reason for mixed reviews of the place. But as the consistent crowds of patrons suggest, I must keep on going over and over to form a final conclusion. What is its charm? What draws us expatriates and foreigners there by the throngs, young and old, single and attached, to mingle among the Belgians?

Perhaps it’s the large and friendly atmosphere, with sun through all the windows in place of walls during the day and bright warm lighting at night. It could be the mixed crowd, itself, made of professionals, families, locals, and harried waitstaff. I’d say it’s their consistently tasty desserts, myself. I’m partial to their apple pie and ice cream, even though that is such the safe choice here in Brussels.

As good as the atmosphere, crowd, and desserts are, however, I wonder how to excuse other issues. Their main dishes are good but not great. Service often is classically Belgian – slow and frequently involving irritated servers – even on weekend mornings when crowds start thin. We go there group after group, but I can’t help but question if social pressure is really causing this.

Is there more to the place than that? I would go there again to think about it, likely over a rich mug of hot milk blessed with spoonfuls of chocolate chips.

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Go for the hot chocolate alone.

Posted by spacemonkey99 on December 7, 2008

Sometimes being a cut above the rest is in the small things. It could be the joking waiter, the chilled beer served at just the right temperature or the perfectly crisp, slightly salted french fries. For the most part what differentiates L’Ultime Atome from its plentiful counterparts is in the small things. The menu spans the usual array of fish, meat, and pasta dishes. On average, the quality of food is just that, average. Yet this resto-bar is hugely popular and is always at least half-full, even on a Sunday. This could be due partially to the ideal location on Saint Boniface, the fact that it is one of the only places open on a Sunday in this area of town or the large array of beers listed on the menu. What attracts this hungry customer again and again is the large, spacey interior, the smoke- and blasting disco music- free environment, and the excellent and price worthy hot chocolate. These may seem to be small details, but in a city full of to the brim of restaurants, bars and cafes, one has to differentiate on the small things.

Recommended dishes include the beef carbonnade (13 euros) and chicken mushroom sauce (15 euros). Pass on the overcooked pasta (10-13 euros) and the overpriced starters (10-12 euros). Beers are served nicely chilled, coffees are excellent and the house hot chocolate arrives with steaming milk and a side of dark chocolate to mix in at savoury and pleasurely will.

L’Ultime Atome, Rue Saint Boniface 14, 1050 Elsene

Food: B+

Drink: A+
Service: C+
Atmosphere: A-
Languages: French, English
Other factors: Non-smoking

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