Belgium for Foodies is a new book that has just been released featuring 350 places in Belgium. It invites the reader to discover Belgium’s extraordinary culinary scene by taking you on a trip through the country from the North Sea to the countryside as well as the vibrant cities.
Written by Femke Vandevelde with photography by Tony de Luc, the book is made up of various lists which enables you to choose what you want from young talents to favourite female top chefs, Belgian fries done right, dining at the bar, places to eat drink and read and much more.
The following is a list of favourite Female Top Chefs from the book published by Luster.
A warm welcome, a serious menu, a quiet garden and an affordable drinks list are all trademarks of one of the best culinary discoveries. Lady chef Greet Verbeeck and maître Fée Van Doorselaere put a lot of effort into giving you that little extra something. The superb wines – check out the Belgian ones – are also available in the wine shop adjacent to Cachet de Cire. After a great night out with friends or a romantic date, you can dive into one of their three comfortable bedrooms upstairs.
Guldensporenlei 23, Turnhot, Antwerp
Chef Lore Moerman and her kitchen team create modern dishes using honest ingredients, while keeping their plates simple and elegant. Try some of their snacks, such as the crispy bitterballen, and continue with uncomplicated classics such as the Ghentian waterzooi stew or coq au vin. With its smart Scandinavian style and its view of the Gravensteen castle, Bodo is rightfully being praised for its genuine simplicity and excellent quality, with matching natural wines.
Burgstraat 2, Ghent
Sōma is an ode to fresh and surprising gastronomy, ideally enjoyed in its quiet and intimate surroundings. As the restaurant’s owners – as well as its chefs and servers – Adriana Zafiris and Frederic Chastro let the seasons rule their creativity. The rather limited menu reads like a symbiosis of both chefs’ roots, combining Belgian, Greek, French and Colombian influences into one grandiose bite.
Wolstraat 33, Antwerp
Wine bar and restaurant Pazzo has been a household name in the Antwerp restaurant scene for years. In a former warehouse opposite the Sint-Felix Warehouse and near the city docks, chef Ingrid Neven mixes Asian cuisine with regional produce, although she has a strong passion for truffle and old-fashioned preparations with butter and cream. Also worth a mention are the lively atmosphere in the wine cellar downstairs, and in the upstairs wine bar.
Oude Leeuwenrui 12, Antwerp
In Marchin, about 60 km from Louvain, you’ll be baffled as you enter the universe of lady chef Arabelle Meirlaen★. Straight from her family cottage, she surprises you with her delicate, elegant and sophisticated cooking style, which follows her less-is-more philosophy. More than just a chef, Arabelle is an artist who looks at life, nutrition and cooking as a whole. She forages for wild plants, forgotten herbs and unusual flowers and intuitively brings them together in meals that are bursting with flavour and colour.
Chemin de Bertrandfontaine, 7, Marchin, Liege
The author Femke Vandevelde divides her time between Ghent and the Belgian coast, together with her partner Jens, their daughter Zadig and their dachshund Nabokov. After her studies as an editor at the University of Amsterdam, she was active as a cookbook blogger. Currently, she works as a freelance culinary editor and restaurant critic for the Belgian newspaper De Morgen. She is also the author of the culinary guides XIII Gent and XIII Antwerpen, and editor of Truth, Love & Clean Cutlery, because she believes in the power of food to connect us across cultural and political boundaries. In addition, Femke runs a coworking space ‘Gunpowder & Smoke’ in Ghent and is chairwoman of the ‘Jong Keukengeweld’ campaign.
Tony Le Duc is an Antwerp-based food photographer whose work has been exhibited internationally and published widely.