Saturday, October 01, 2005
Dining vs. Eating
Periodically I will post brief restaurant reviews on this blog to encourage my friends and readers to experience "dining" versus simply "eating" especially when traveling. What better way to experience and better understand a new culture while you are traveling than via a local, native restaurant instead of seeking out your next Burger King or KFC simply because "well, I know what they serve there....." ? Going forward I plan to use a basic "5 star" rating system with "1 star meaning" -- I wouldn't eat there even if you paid for dinner -- to "5 star" meaning -- I wish a had a condo upstairs so I could eat here more often."
So here are three restaurants I have dined at earlier this year:
1.) Cave du Roy -- http://www.caveduroy.com, located in the "Grand Place" of Brussels, Belgium. This restaurant is located in a 17th Century cellar which serves traditional Belgian food. I dined with my free market friends -- Sacha and Stephen -- at this restaurant while we were in Brussels for the "Capitalist Ball" (watch for a future post on this annual event). Cave du Roy is informally known as my "office" in Brussels because it is an ideal venue for a relaxed business conversation. Rating -- 4 stars
2.) Rosa Art Lounge (RAL) -- http://www.rosa-artlounge.com, located in the Toison d'Or area of Brussels, Belgium. This restaurant is located just a few doors away (36-37 Boulevard de Waterloo) from the Hilton Hotel which makes an ideal landmark for finding this venue. RAL is the complete opposite of the 17th Century Cave du Roy since RAL's decor is essentially a modern art gallery including a chandelier over the main bar constructed of broken plates and multi-colored booth seats, walls, etc. coupled with dance music in the background. This is clearly a venue for the "beautiful people" BUT somehow they allowed me to have a table!!! :) The table next to me must have included a few models since the cameras were flashing throughout my dinner which made it difficult to see what I was eating but I can report I had an excellent salmon starter followed by a cod main dish. Overall a very nice dining experience. Rating -- 4 stars
3.) Baan Klung Jinda Restaurant -- http://www.baanklung.com, located in Phuket, Thailand in a former Sino-Portuguese mansion. It was a large group dinner which typically affects food quality but in this case the restaurant rose to the challenge serving a full range of traditional Thai dishes and I enjoyed all of them especially the shrimp with basil dish. Rating -- 3 stars