All posts tagged: 2stars

#43 Our vegan dinner at resto De Kroontjes, De Koog (Texel, NL) **

Restaurant review #43 – Texel is an island north west of Amsterdam (NL). There are only a handfull of small villages on Texel, but the island is very touristic, so there are quite a lot of hotels and restaurants. Not that much options for vegans though. In another blogpost, I’ll give our vegan view on Texel, and places where you can have a vegan meal (and also some restaurants that replied they can’t fullfill our vegan needs). We were at Texel for the weekend, and we dined at restaurant De Kroontjes in De Koog, a very small town on the west side of the island. I had noticed on the website of De Kroontjes they have a vegetarian curry risotto as a vegetarian option, and so I e-mailed them if we could get a vegan meal (explaining what we do and don’t eat). After receiving confirmation, I made a reservation. The front of the restaurant looks more like a pub or brasserie, but the inside is more resaturant style. After arriving at the restaurant, I asked whether everything was ok …

#40 Our vegan lunch at vegetarian resto Nectar, Kortrijk / Courtrai **

Restaurant review #40 – Nectar is a organic vegetarian restaurant in Kortrijk / Courtrai, a city in the south of Flanders (60km from Bruges). Restaurant Nectar is only open for lunch, during weekdays, a common feature among vegetarian restaurants with a typical ‘plat du jour’ offer (similar vegetarian plat du jour restaurants, which are also only open for lunch are for example De Bron in Bruges, Grenoble in Sint-Niklaas, De Graankorrel in Ostend and Avalon in Ghent). We sometimes jokingly refer to these types of restaurants as ‘toefjesrestaurants‘, because they typically serve a variety of little heaps (=toefjes) of several vegetables and grains on one plate (macrobiotic inspired). As stated above, it is a vegetarian restaurant, and not a vegan restaurant. I had read conflicting posts on social media about whether or not you should ask for vegan in advance (some stating you have to make a reservation and specifically ask for vegan, other saying you can just drop in). We were in Kortrijk some weeks ago and had no set plans for lunch yet, so we decided to …

#33 Our lunch at vegetarian resto Lokaal, Ghent **

Restaurant review #33 – Lokaal is a new vegetarian restaurant/tea house (opened at end of 2014) in the city center of Ghent. It’s about a 5 minute walk from the Kouter, and is located at the corner of the glass alley (red light district). The name Lokaal reveals the restaurant’s concept: using local product (from within Europe) as much as possible. There is always a vegan dish standardly available. In a newspaper article I also read they wanted to grow herbs in the restaurant room and use these in the dishes. Lokaal also offers a couple of dozen sorts of tea. Sounds promising! So we were eager to check it out. Our lunch Options are indicated on the chalk board high up and above in the restaurant. The only thing that wasn’t vegan was said to be the quiche (I specifically asked about the bread and it was said to be vegan). The soup wasn’t red beet soup as indicated, but red cabagge soup. We ordered the soup (4,5€) and then the sandwich with Brussels sprouts and hazelnuts (6€), and the …

#31 Restaurant Buddhasia, Bruges **

Restaurant review #31 – Buddhasia is a new Vietnamese restaurant in the city center of Bruges (opened Fall 2014). It is located at the back of the Sint-Salvator Cathedral and near the main shopping street (a 5 min walk from ‘t Zand). NOTE: see update below.  Thai or Vietnamese restaurants often have a selection of vegetarian dishes that seem to be vegan (sometimes seperately listed as vegetarian or vegetable dishes on the menu), But restaurant Buddhasia takes it up to the next level and has a seperate vegan category on their menu card! Yeah! The vegan section lists five main dishes, ranging from 9€ to 14€. Upon ordering, we got an appetizer with noodles and bean sprouts (taugé). Our drinks followed quickly: a mango juice (4€) and a freshly squeezed orange juice (4,5€). We asked whether they also could suggest us some vegan entrees, and were suggested the Pho – noodlesoup (9€) (unfortunately no other vegan entrees possible). As a main dish, I asked the tofu with morning glory (water spinach) and garlic 14€) and my partner went for the noodles with vegetables …

#25 Restaurant Erawan, Haarlem (NL) **

Restaurant review #25 – Erawan is a Thai restaurant in the center of Haarlem (the Netherlands). We were there early on a Saturday evening. We didn’t make a reservation, but as the evening progressed the place soon filled up, so it is advisable to make a reservation if you want to be sure. The menu card lists several vegetarian dishes seperately, of which most appear to be vegan. We specifically checked whether the dishes didn’t contain any egg, and asked which sauce was used to prepare the dishes, and specifically mentioned that we didn’t want anything prepared with oyster sauce. The waitress replied she would give our message to the kitchen. The soup, Tom Kha Tahoe phak (coconut mushroom soup, 6,95€) was quite nice. As main dishes, we ordered tofu with ginger and black mushrooms & tofu with cashew nuts and mushrooms (12,95€ each). The dishes were served with plain white rice, and crisps that conspicuously looked like kroepoek (prawn crackers). I asked the lady serving us what they were, and she did (with an ‘of course’ tone) …

#21 Le Pain Quotidien, Bruges **

Restaurant review #21 – Chances are you’ve probably been in one of the many establishments worldwide of Le Pain Quotidien. Or at least you’ve seen one of them! There is also one in the heart of Bruges, near the central market place and the Burg. Pain Quotidien is French for Daily Bread. They sell a wide variety of bread over the counter, and you can also sit down for breakfast, lunch or just a coffee with some baked goodies. The restaurant always has one large communal table (for 10 people or more), but also other tables for 2 if you want to have a more private conversation. There’s always something vegan available and vegan items are clearly marked on the menu card. Le Pain Quotidien confirmed to us that the bread served at the table is always vegan. Most of the breads sold over the counter are also vegan, but the raisin bread (kramiek), sugar bread and brioche are non-vegan. UPDATE – see below We were at Le Pain Quotidien in Bruges for lunch on a Friday, and the …

#20 Restaurant Lan Na Thai, Mechelen **

Restaurant review #20 – Lan Na Thai is a Thai restaurant in the center of Mechelen (Malines). It’s about a big 5 minute walk from the market place. (** See NOTE at bottom of post) We made a reservation for a Saturday evening, at 7PM. Good thing we made a reservation, because the restaurant soon filled, and the owner had to refuse several patrons. It’s not a big restaurant (I’m guessing about 20 to 25 seats) and tables are placed pretty close to each other. Update  – see below –  The menu on their website mentions several vegetarian dishes separately, of which most seem to be vegan. We asked whether the vegetarian dishes we ordered did not contain any dairy or egg, and the waitress confirmed – although seemingly a bit confused by our question at first – that they didn’t. Nonetheless we did get a bowl of prawn crackers as a free appetizer, not really reassuring. Let’s hope the staff in the kitchen was more knowledgeable (one is of course never 100% sure when dining out that everything served is vegan). We …

#19 Restaurant Lombardia, Antwerp **

Restaurant review #19 – Restaurant Lombardia is a well know place in Antwerp. (Update – SEE NOTE BELOW) Despite the announcement on their website (“Our menu card is more than 80% vegetarian, so we can proudly call ourselves a vegetarian restaurant“), Lombardia is not a vegetarian restaurant, since they also serve fish (tuna) and meat. They do have vegan and gluten free options standardly available. It is only open till 6 PM, so no dinner. There’s also the option of take-away. We’ve been here a couple of times over the years. Last time was some weeks ago. We actually wanted to try out raw food restaurant Eten Vol Leven, but unfortunately that was closed. The Lombardia experience Least that can be said is that Lombardia’s interior is very colourful. The walls are decorated with scraps and clippings from magazines and newspapers, often boasting about the restaurant or its owner, and enlarged printed tweets from (pseudo-) famous people mentioning their visit to wonderful Lombardia. It’s a chaotic patchwork of different bits and pieces glued together. The place is jammed packed with different types of …

#13 Restaurant De broers van Julienne, Antwerp **

Restaurant review #13 – De Broers van Julienne is a restaurant in Antwerp well-known for its many vegetarian options. They mainly work with organic ingredients. Several sites list this as a vegetarian restaurant, but it is not (also serves fish). It also has some vegan options standardly available. I had been to De broers van Julienne on my own a couple of years ago, and wasn’t really impressed. It was on a cold snowy winter day, and although I had hoped to warm myself in the restaurant, it was unpleasantly cold inside. Don’t know whether their heating system was broke or if it was always like that, but there was a small heater placed in the middle of the room, that really couldn’t heat the spacious place. I remember a waitress who could hardly speak any Dutch, and replied to my question whether a certain dish was vegan: “gluten free?”. It wasn’t that reassuring and I can’t even remember what I had for lunch at that visit. I did remember the uncomfy chairs and slow …

#6 Restaurant Chang Thong Thai, Bruges **

Restaurant review #6 – Chang Thong Thai is a Thai restaurant in a small alley next to ‘t Zand. Their online menu card lists several vegetarian/vegan dishes seperately. We’ve already heard some experiences from other vegans and vegetarians about this place, so we decided to go check it out ourselves! It was a good thing we made a reservation for dinner, because shortly after we arrived, the place was packed (on a weeknight). Although it is in the city center, we hardly saw any tourists probably because it’s not in a main street. There’s a small area upstairs with some tables as well, but since the toilets were located there we decided to take place at one of the tables downstairs. Tables are stashed pretty close next to each other, which made us a bit uncomfortable (hearing every word of the conversation of the couple next to you, willingly or not, is not really enjoyable). Comfy arm chairs though. This is dining in a traditional Asian style setting (well, you know, Western Asian style), with buddhas statues …