Restaurant review #36 – De Jonkman is a gastronomical restaurant at the edge of Bruges (Sint-Kruis). It is listed in the renowned Michelin guide with two stars. There is no vegan menu standardly available at De Jonkman, but if you ask it in advance it is no problem.
We went there for our 25th anniversary. Not a big party, but just the two of us, for a relaxed evening with fine dining ❤
Upon making the reservation, I said we wanted a vegan menu, and explicited what this means (what we do and don’t eat). I asked for a 5-course menu, being 105€ per person (without drinks).
Here are the photos of what we had. As is always the case in gastronomical restaurants, the waiter enumerated a series of ingredients when serving each plate. We tried to take some notes, but it was way too much to remember everything ;-).
A very enjoyable evening out
We thoroughly enjoyed our evening out. The athmosphere was distinguished and yet relaxed at the same time. Comfortable seatings. Fine touches that are custom in more classy restaurants (eg placing your napkin neatly folded on your seat when away from the table). It was nice that chef Filip Claeys comes to great all guest personally at the table, although he shouldn’t have given us the standard fish and meat menu to choose from (slight anxious gasp – doesn’t he know?, no thank you, we don’t need that, we asked for a vegan menu! 😉 ).
We did not have to wait long in between courses, and although the portions might seem small on some photos, the combination of everything was more than enough. We have dined a couple of times now in gastronomical restaurants, and one thing that is very remarkable is that not any of them used tofu, tempeh or seitan in their dishes. Maybe because they make everything from scratch, and they consider making tempeh or seitan too much work? Not that I think tofu or seitan are a requisite for a good vegan dish! The variety of vegetables (and fruits), differently prepared and with a rich palet of spices is delicious in itself, but sometimes tempeh or seitan could give it an additional bite. And it would be interesting and inspirational to experience what great chefs make with these classic ‘meat replacers’. I wonder why they eschew them.
Dining at De Jonkman is not cheap, but of course, they do serve something else than pasta with stir fried vegetables 😉 . It’s a gastronomical experience in a classy setting, which leads you to discover new tastes, new ingredients and new combinations.