Saturday, 20 November 2010

Quirky things about Belgium: the perfect brunch

Yes. It really does exist. After a lovely meal last night in a newish Nivelles restaurant (more on that another time), where the waiter had taken a shine to us and given us a whole bottle of wine for the price of half, plus free kirs for aperitif, I had a craving for brunch this morning.

I was meeting a friend at L'Atelier du Pain at Vanderkindere: I like their plain, Ikea-style decor, and their comfortable seats; I also like their coffee, though I had forgotten how much. I knew, or suspected, they would have nice goat's cheese salad type affairs, and I reasoned with myself that this was at least as good as a greasy brunch.

But then - oh happy day - there was a breakfast section of the menu, and the cheerful, polite waitress was happy for me to order it after 11.30, though not at the special-offer price. And one of the options was l'Anglais: bacon, eggs, bread, butter. The waitress did not roll her eyes when I asked if the bacon was real - she offered for me to see it, and it looked English enough, and tasted wonderful. Delicious, perfectly cooked, as were the eggs. Even the butter tasted great - and I didn't feel I was missing out on the coffee front, either, which if you have been reading this blog for any length of time you will know is a minor miracle.

Well done, Belgium: five stars. This may be almost be enough to redeem your myriad other quirks.

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