All posts tagged: falafel

#168 Vegan options at The Sister, Brussels

restaurant review #168 – The Sister is a small cafe in the heart of Brussels, in an alley leading to the Grand Place (the central market place, where the city hall is). The alley is called the ‘Vlees & Broodstraat’ by the way (the meat and bread street). The Sister has a nice selection of vegan options, clearly indicated on the menu. The café also offers a wide variety of Belgian beers. Here is a part of the menu, with vegan options clearly indicated: We were here for an early dinner, before going to a music show at the nearby Ancienne Belgique. This is what we had: sesame lentil falafel, comes with soup (12€) sweet wrap (6€) We had very mixed feelings about the food. The sweet wrap was very cheap (6€), but this was not the ‘hearty’ sweet wrap that I had in mind when ordering. It came on a sort of cabbage or lettuce leaf, and was hardly ‘wrapped’ at all, but held together with a string. A strange combination with the sweet peanut …

#134 Nice Lebanese dinner at Karamna, Louvain

Restaurant review #134 – Karamna is a Lebanese restaurant in Louvain. It is located in the city center, in a corner of the Oude Markt (old market). It is not a really big place, but does have a terrace in front. A couple of months ago, I already received confirmation through e-mail that vegan dishes are possible, and which dishes we could choose from the menu. I telephoned to make a reservation for dinner and inquired again whether they had vegan options, and it was said to be no problem. Upon arrival, we repeated that we are vegan, and do not eat any animal products. The lady of the house immediately went through the menu, and showed which dishes are suitable. We ordered a variety of smaller plates, some listed as cold or hot dishes (nearly all listed as appetizers), and asked for them to be served together: Falafel (4 pieces, 1,25/piece) Fatayer Sabanekh = baked dough stuffed with spinach, onion and lemon (4 pieces, 1,25€/piece) Modardara = lentils with onions and rice (4,50€) Hummus (5€) …

#132 Our dinners at veggie bistro De Plaats, Bruges

Restaurant review #132 – De Plaats is a vegetarian restaurant in the city center of Bruges, close to the central market square and the Belfry (where restaurant Lotus used to be). De Plaats literally translates as ‘The Place’. De Plaats opened in 2016, and we had been eager to go check it out for several months. This review is from two visits, respectively in April and May 2017. The menu lists 10 dishes, of which about half are vegan (clearly indicated). We ordered some drinks (wine was said to be vegan), which came swiftly. We had the lentil dish (15€) and the vegan burger with potatoes (14€). The food was good, but we were culinairy a bit underwhelmed by the dishes, all in all just being a pre-bought burger and falafels (from La Vie est Belle), with lentils and potatoes, and salad on the side.  Something we would also eat as a weekday meal at home, when we don’t have the time nor motivation to cook up something more fancy and just flip a storebought …

#99 Nice quick lunch at EXKi in Brussels

Restaurant review #99 – The Exki restaurants are part of an international chain. There are several EXKi restaurants in Belgium, most are in Brussels though (27 of them). There’s also an EXKi in the train station of Bruges. Contrary to common belief, it is not an full organic chain (the FAQ on their website states about 30% of their products are organic). The EXKi restaurants have a couple of vegan options standardly available, which are clearly indicated on the labels: sandwiches, salads, soup. Unfortunately no vegan desserts though (except for some fruit). The Exki restaurants are not for elaborate wining and dining, but more of a fastfood ‘self service’ place: you take your food from the fridges, pay at the counter, and then afterwards clean up the table. There’s also a microwave to heat your dish. You can of course also buy to take-away. A couple of weeks ao, we went to one in Brussels, Exki Agora. It is near the train station of Brussels Central (Grasmarkt – near shopping center Agora). This what we had: a mushroom soup (3,75€), a bread …

#82 – Nice light lunch at new bistro Grün, Bruges ***

Restaurant review #82 – Grün is a new bistro in the city center of Bruges, not far from ‘t Zand and ‘t Zilverpand. On their facebookpage, Grün describes itself as a “healthy food restaurant“, “Take out Deli” and a “green hang out spot“. I had read on social media that they have vegan options, and phoned beforehand to inquire and make a reservation, and yes, they confirmed they have vegan options. Note: see update below We were there for lunch on a weekday and the place soon filled up. There’s also a nice terrace in the back, and some tables in front of the bistro. It’s a spacious, bright place, soberly decorated, not so comfy chairs though. There did not seem to be a lot of vegan dishes available on the menu card, but some dishes could easily be adapted to make them vegan (with either falafel or baked tofu). We had the Lebanese salad (avocadohummus, roasted cauliflower, carrots and instead of haloumi, we choose falafel, 14€) and the plat du jour, which was pearl couscous with salad …

#51 Nice lunch at vegan Fortify Café in Maidstone (UK) ****

Restaurant review #51 – On our route from Dover to Brighton, we stopped in Maidstone for lunch. When looking at a map of the south east of England, Maidstone isn’t exactly in between Dover and Brighton, but it is very close to the M20, which turns out to be a faster and easier route to Brighton than driving through the small coastal towns (which can also be nice, we did this a couple of years ago). It’s a small town, and the city center is easily accesible from one of the parkings at the edge (oh, and there’s even a Lush! shop with vegan toilteries and care products). Fortify Café was recommended to us in one of the vegan FB groups, when we asked for suggestions to eat on route to Brighton. Perfect stop: about half way in our journey, and we arrived just after noon. UPDATE SEE BELOW As the name suggest, it’s not really a restaurant, but more a bistro/café style place, with also take away option, and some seats outside. We had some orange juices (£3) to drink. Which …

Finding vegan goodies. A visit to British shop Stonemanor, Everberg

Shop review #17 – Stonemanor is a large British Store, where you can find a lot of products that are regularly sold in British shops, but which may be more difficult to find in regular Belgian shops. It is in between Brussels and Leuven, on the outskirts of the community of Everberg (120km from Bruges). There’s also a Stonemanor shop in Waterloo. We were there a couple of montsh ago, on our route to Leuven (Louvain), and took some time to discover the shop. Food items are downstairs, on the first floor you can find books (no vegan cookbooks though), baking tools, culinary decoration, posters etc, and on the top floor beds and accessories (didn’t verify if any of it was vegan). To be clear: it is not a vegan shop, nor an organic shop, but since it does sell many items that are not regularly found on the Belgian market, there are also some vegan goodies to be found here that are not so common in Belgian shops. There are some vegan products available in the frozen …

#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 …