Ventre Saint Gris

2014 update – the Thursday menu is now 40e per person.

A small break in Rome and it’s back to Brussels. Granted going out to eat in Brussels after a week of gorgeous Italian food is a little difficult to get used to. We made an effort though and following the current mantra ‘new places only!’ we found ourselves in our new neighborhood, trying out another new restaurant. The Ventre Saint Gris. Specifically the Jeudis du Ventre Saint Gris. I did wonder what the Thursdays have to do with the Ventre Saint Gris, but we soon found out.

The story so far
We moved from one wonderful commune, Ixelles, to another, less known to us, Uccle. Both offer an incredible variety in terms of restaurants. However whilst we knew the restaurants around Ixelles, Uccle is all new territory for us. Which means every restaurant we go to is an adventure: we don’t know where they are located, the type of food served or the people who go there. Talk about living on the edge!

First impression
Recently I saw an ad in our local paper (they have a local paper in Uccle!) advertising the Ventre Saint Gris, and their Thursday menus. It seems the restaurant has a special formula offering a different menu every Thursday, all for 35euro (wine included). An offer we could not refuse so we decided to try the Bieres Belges et Gastronomie.

The restaurant is what they call around here upper class traditional (I think). Don’t ask me what that means. I’d guess, that crisp white linen, chic table ware and the service make for a nice and elegant restaurant. Probably not what I would call a cozy restaurant but the place was absolutely buzzing. Full, full, full. It seems Thursdays tend to be fully booked and some menus they offer (like the Asperges en folie – Crazy asparagus) get booked months in advance. So if you are planning to go to the Ventre Saint Gris, booking is advised if not required.

The food
The food changes every Thursday but we were impressed and delighted with the service and the quality of the food. First for the price we paid, a full three course menu is quite unusual in Brussels. Secondly, the food was delicious!

We started with a pre-starter of ham terrine a la Gueuze; then a cod with Blanche de Bruges sauce; a beef fillet with cheese and Chimay sauce; and to end pancakes with a Kriek sorbet. Delightful although maybe just a little bit too much. 

Service with a smile
The service was both prompt and discreet. I guess just what you’d expect.

The verdict
Well, there are a couple of menus I don’t want to miss so I will most definitely go back. The Tartares in August; the Baby Homard (lobster) evening in September; or maybe the Ouverture de la Chasse (opening of the hunting season)? Ah, the options are endless. And all for just 35euro!

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