At the beginning of the week, the Belgian “chapter” of the Gault-Millau guide also unveiled its ratings, showing a handful of restaurants on the move.
In particular, I am very happy to see Bart de Pooter awarded “Chef of the year“. Our meal at his restaurant “De Pastorale” back in June was a stunning parade of ingenious dishes with compelling purity of flavors. This well deserved title is underlined by a rating raised to 18 points.
Further, I am glad to see Sang Hoon Degeimbre‘s “L’Air du Temps” received 18 points, although this rating is unchanged since last year. The meal we had there was equally stunning, with molecular techniques only used as a clever means to an end, putting the product in the center. I am sure the new restaurant which is currently under construction will further boost Degeimbre‘s creative cooking.
While we’re at it. In general, Gault-Millau is noticing ” a trend away from molecular cuisine and towards “real” cuisine” (“Nous notons un mouvement de la cuisine moléculaire en direction de la vraie cuisine”, souligne le directeur du guide Philippe Limbourg – Source). Degeimbre’s creations don’t go against this observation.
Otherwise, Peter Goosens’ “Hof Van Cleve” remains the absolute gastronomic reference in Belgium, being the only restaurant rated 19,5 points. However, he is closely followed by “Comme Chez Soi” and “Sea Grill” , both rated 19 out of 20 points.
The title “Grands de Demain” (“Greats of tomorrow”) has been awarded to the 3 young chefs Pierre Massin (“Chai Gourmand” in Gembloux), Dimitry Lysens (“Magis” in Tongres) and Thomas Locus (“Bistro Margaux” in Sint-Martens-Bodegem).
My conclusion: Belgium might be a small country, but a rising giant when it comes to fine dining and I am very much looking forward to further meals.