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Foodie news from the capital
Don’t despair if you were one of the many disappointed diners unable to secure a seat on The Tram Experience this year. The Brusselicious gastronomic tram has been given the green light to continue its two-star culinary tour of the city in 2013 following a new agreement with STIB. The Tram Experience was Brusselicious’ most successful event with 12,500 passengers stepping aboard the futuristic white gourmet buffet car in 2012 . During a two-hour, 20km trip around the city, guests were served the best of Belgian gastronomy by a rotating legion of the country’s two-star Michelin chefs. The all-inclusive fee of €75 for three courses and long waiting list for places was apparently no deterrent to diners. It departs Tuesday to Sunday from Place Poelaert.
Another Brusselicous event, The Best Frites Stand in Brussels has resulted in a not entirely unexpected winner in Place Jourdan’s La Maison Antoine. Also placed on the podium were Chez Clementine (Place Saint-Job) and Chez Fernand (Avenue Georges-Henri). During the Fritkot Festival from November 1 to December 4, visitors to the city were invited to elect their favourite chip stand out of a selected 19. To encourage frite samplers, Brusselicious distributed 50,000 cones throughout the city which allowed diners to fill for €1 from the fritekot of their choice.
Look out for some sweet new offerings at Delhaize supermarket as the chain continues its collaboration with top chefs, launching ranges by chocolatier Pierre Marcolini and patissery chef Roger van Damme. Marcolini has come up with three spherical creations using dark and milk chocolate, salted caramel, Madagascar vanilla, lime and almond and hazelnut praline. While van Damme has developed a number of products, some permanent and others for the festive season such as milk chocolate mousse with a touch of lemon, exotic fruits, crispy puffed rice and a passion fruit cream dessert.
New in the city
Bia Mara Urban Seafood Kitchen near the Grand‘Place is already causing a buzz for its fish & chip concept. It has a simple €10 formula of fish, chicken or vegetarian main and choice of homemade sauce and speciality salt and spice for chips. One of our roving reporters dipped his fingers into a specials option of red snapper for €12 and gave the combination a definite thumbs up. Alternatively, there are fish, chicken and vegetarian tacos, for anyone tired of the humble fry. Plus good selection of Belgian and imported beers and wines.
Parlor Coffee in Chaussée de Charleroi is luring caffeine connoisseurs from around Brussels. In addition to the variety and quality of its coffees, it now proposes lunch, breakfast and Sunday brunch options as well as tempting homemade cakes and desserts. There’s daily fresh soup, coffee of the week and free Wifi. The location near Place Stéphanie is also proving a gastronome’s paradise with equally enticing neighbours, Mig’s Food & Wine, Zaabär chocolate shop and cooking class emporium Mmmmh!