From 13 to 15 September the eat!Brussels festival once again put the world’s cuisines on the menu and for the second year running the event was a resounding success! Eight bilateral partners of the Brussels-Capital Region responded to its invitation to give the Brussels public a taste of their specialties.
The eat!Brussels festival, which is organised in the magnificent setting of Bois de la Cambre, aims to reflect the culinary diversity in Brussels. The menu offers visitors an amazing array of discoveries with restaurants and producers of specialties from all the continents of world using all their creative skills to surprise and delight visitors.
The bilateral partners of the Brussels-Capital Region were invited to be part of a food village, where they could present their specialities and local produce. Eight of our partners responded to the invitation by the Minister and the External Relations Directorate of the Regional Public Service of Brussels: the cities of Budapest, Beijing and Sofia, the provinces of Katanga, Quebec and Sichuan and the regions of Rabat-Salé-Zemmour-Zaër and Bratislava were all in attendance. They all served various exceptional and typical products. An ideal opportunity to introduce your taste buds to some authentic, new and unusual discoveries!
Authentic and unusual discoveries
Sichuan cuisine and the Sichuan pepper that have made it famous are known the world over. The region was represented by the famous Daronghé restaurant from Chengdu, which introduced us to spare ribs braised in sweet and sour sauce and stewed tofu with Sichuan pepper. A veritable explosion of flavours.
Beijing seconded the Golden Million restaurant to Brussels, giving it the task of representing its famous gastronomy. Dishes included the famous lacquered Peking Duck, fried chicken with fruit as well as products to take away – some more unusual than others -, such as bamboo charcoal peanuts, which are super-trendy.
Quebec chose to use Kanata products for its culinary showcase. The beautiful Canadian province gave visitors the opportunity to buy and taste delicious beers, teas, its famous maple syrup products as well as local confectionary and liqueur. Visitors were also invited to taste a typical “Corn roast”.
The culinary arts of the Capital Region of Morocco were represented by the renowned caterer Samraa of Rabat. His stand featured the full range of local specialities including pastilla, couscous, tajines, a wide range of cakes and biscuits, and mint tea of course.
Bratislava decided to highlight the work of the students of the Secondary Vocational School Farského, under the scrutiny of the region’s Vice-President Gabriella Nemeth. It was also a unique opportunity to taste a traditional Slovak festive dish, sauerkraut soup with forest mushrooms, flavoured with smoked sausages and the Slovak version of raviolis. Delicious!
Katanga’s cuisine is sunny and spicy by nature but above all it is traditional home cuisine. The region was represented by a delegation of cooks from across the vast Congolese province who served a series of tasty typical dishes: Nile perch, goat kebabs, chicken moambe, along with a glass of local beer!
This year Sofia was represented by the famous Shades of Red restaurant of the Grand Hotel Sofia. Its talented chef, Joro Ivanov, who graduated from the French Culinary Institute in New York, participated twice in the prestigious Bocuse d’Or. He also worked in the Michelin-starred Brussels restaurant, La Truffe noire. He served a refreshing and delicious yoghurt-based vichyssoise of cucumber and dill as well as Thracian chicken thighs marinated in herbed yoghurt.
Budapest was represented by masterchef Áron Barka, who presented recipes with foie gras, a nouvelle cuisine-style beef goulash and a traditional strudel with poppy seeds and sour cherries. The sommelier Jim Bauters also introduced visitors to a wide range of Hungarian wines, including the famous Hungarian Tokay dessert wine called “wine of kings, king of wines”. A shepherd also prepared a traditional goulash for us, following the age-old ancestral recipe. Truly an unforgettable experience!
eat!Brussels, Drink Bordeaux
eat!Brussels will be back in 2014. Next year the spotlight will be on Bordeaux wine in all its forms. On 13 September 2013 the Mayor of Bordeaux, Alain Juppé, the Brussels Minister of Economy, Céline Fremault and the Mayor of Brussels, Freddy Thielemans, announced a partnership between Brussels and Bordeaux. So see you in 2014 for the tastiest weekend of the year!
Further information: Facebook page eat!Brussels