restaurant review #156 – ‘t Aards Paradijs is a gastronomic restaurant in Nevele, which is just outside of Ghent and 40km from Bruges. In 2010, chef Lieven Lootens was awarded the title of best vegetable chef of the year (beste Groentekok) and I had seen ‘t Aards Paradijs mentionned in a facebook group as a place where one could ask a vegan menu. And so we did! I inquired before making the reservation and it was said to be no problem.
The lady of the house warmly welcomed us, and later on the chef also personally came to greet us. He inquired how strict vegan we are (which we do find an odd question, see this post). We chatted a bit about vegan dining out, products and he also showed some products which he planned on using in the dishes, and asked us if these were OK (some brands of soy and rice milk which we hadn’t seen before). He was very welcoming, friendly and open to our questions and suggestions. It felt reassuring.
This was our vegan menu (75€ per person). There were many more ingredients mentionned when the dishes were served, but we just couldn’t remember all of them!
- soufflé of corn cream, cracker, pepper, fennel and wasabi
- sea vegetables with citrus, grapefruit (frozen with nitrogen)
- jerusalem artichokes, broad beans and asparagus
- leeks, fennel, rapeseed and tamari
- broccoli besengek, pasta with Morrocan herbs
- puy lentils, chanterelles, argon oil
- two sorts of pumkin (chestnut and sweet dumpling) roasted hennep, leaves of Brussels sprouts, fermented soy
- red beet, pineapple, sage and berries
- chocolate with red beet and rosemary
- sorbet of buckthorn and sorrel granité
We had a very nice dinner, loved the food! Lovely presentations too. The restaurant is spacious, and the atmosphere was relaxed. One of the nicest vegan gastronomic dinners we ever had.
Do keep in mind that this is not a vegan restaurant, and the stuffed deer’s head on the wall was rather confrontational (we only noticed after taking our seats that we were straight underneath him…). There was also a little pouf draped in fur next to each table, and the lady of the house asked me if she could put my handbag on it (apparently that was what it was for), but I declined the offer.
Toilets were upstairs, clean, individual towels to dry one’s hands.
There’s also a large garden terrace, and although it was dark and cold when we visited, I can imagine it’s a lovely setting in Summertime.
‘t Aards Paradijs, location
We had this little snack in between desserts: chocolate with red beet and rosemary. Delicious!