Monday, December 27, 2010

In T'Spinnekopke : Brussels, Belgium

I hate spiders.

I realize that it could potentially be a mix of quirkiness and a loss in translation of cultures, but at the moment, it is beyond me why someone would choose to have a spider theme for a restaurant.  From the website (Click on the button at the button with "En" for English), it sounds there was some sort of wording mix up that led to the name Spinnekopke and I am wondering whether that has something to do with spiders.


Anyhow.

Spider theme aside, as for the restaurant itself, I really was on the fence on whether I found the interior to be an warm and having personality or whether I just thought it was dark, oppressive and stodgy.

Certainly, the serivce was wonderful.  We had an old gentleman serving us that evening, who had apparently waited in restaurants in LA and Australia.  With such experience, he had a good sense of timing of when to refill glasses, when to check in with us and when to chip in with banter and when not to.


The following photo may initially strike you as an example for my sense of humor, but in fact, we both really have noticed ourselves enjoying the (flat) water served in a number of the restaurants in Europe.  For some reason, the water comes across as more refreshing, clear and thirst-quenching than what we generally have found in the U.S.

Now I could go either way with the above observation: a) This could all be mental and in our heads. -or- b) There really is some difference in the minerals (or lack thereof) in the water sources there.  


Wow, I am being really chatty here.  The food.

Curry Mussels - Not bad, curry strangely not the central flavor of the sauce, rather there was more of a curry/seafood bisque-like flavor.  Particularly after snacked on beignets and frites and having recently had much lighter moules frites to compare this to, this struck me as being as being a bit on the heavy side, although like a stew, this might be fitting in the winter months.  To be fair though, the mussels were cooked fairly well.


Steak with Chef's sauce - I ordered the steak medium, figuring it would still be more on the rare side (which was the case).  The steak was a bit gamey and the chef's sauce, though it looked quite like gravy, was
actually more of a cream sauce, with something sweet added, (I suspect chocolate or a beer tasting like chocolate).  While it was not bad per se, this dish really struck me as being something like I would come up with as a cooking experiment that I probably would not have repeated.  


Looking back at this meal, I keep on thinking of Au Pied Du Cochon in Montreal which just blasted my family and I with a heaviness to the meal that we did not expect.  While these dishes did not have that sluggishness to  to quite that extent, that lack of lightness and deftness to the flavors was just something I did not connect with.

Very much like the spider.


In T'Spinnekopke
Bloemenhofplein 1, 1000 Brussels, Belgium (Map)
02 511 86 95
www.spinnekopke.be

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