Travel

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” -Mark Twain

Roadtrip week 2: Las Vegas!*

After having spent 4 days at the (rainy and windy) Belgian Sea side and 2 days in a sports center in the small town called Hazewinkel, there is nothing I long more for than Las Vegas.

On our roadtrip we visited a lot of national parks, so the city of Las Vegas brought a welcome change. We stayed at the gorgeous and very modern Vdara Hotel. It didn’t have a casino, nor a club, but since Las Vegas has plenty of them , this wasn’t a problem. It actually brought a certain serenity to the Las Vegas liveliness. Our hotel wasn’t situated on the famous strip, but it was connected with the Aria Hotel and the Bellagio, which made it very easy to access Las Vegas Boulevard.

Las Vegas Boulevard

Las Vegas Boulevard

During our stay in Las Vegas, the famous city made a huge impression on me. Not only is this Nevada town, the center of kitsch and gambling, but it’s also a shopping- and party Walhalla! There are numerous high end designer stores in this town (TIP: The Forum Shops). Whatever you need, going from Tiffany & Co to the local souvenir stores, to patisserie (Jean Philippe‘s is THE BEST! Try the ice-cream) and (of course) an M&M store, you’ll find it in Vegas!

Jean-Philippe Patisserie @ The Bellagio

Jackpot!

Our 'big' win

What impressed me the most, weren’t the shopping centers,  but all of the massive hotels. Their architecture is impeccable. You can call it kitsch, but I call it art. What those architects have achieved is beyond words. They even re-build a small version of the Colosseum and the NYC skyline. WOW!

The Ceasars Palace

The Ceasars Palace - Colosseum

New York New York Hotel

The Venetian

The Venetian

Paris Las Vegas

The Mirage

Out of all the hotels, the Bellagio is without doubt my favorite. It’s definitely the most classy and classical hotel and the fountains are indescribably beautiful and miraculous. If a Nobel Prize for artificially beauty would exist, the Bellagio would win it for sure!

The Bellagio

NYC is called ‘the city that never sleeps’, but Las Vegas can definitely meet that name as well. I think it’s one of the most vibrant cities in the world. Every hotel has at least one club, one buffet restaurant and multiple other restaurants. In my opinion Las Vegas is the place to be for a Bachelor(ette) party!  It’s not called ‘Sin City’ for nothing.

But in my opinion, this article doesn’t even describe how much I liked Las Vegas. Therefore, I hope the pictures speak for themselves!

Vegas, be prepared, because I’ll definitely be back to celebrate my bachelorette party, one day…!

Xo

M.

Roadtrip week 1: San Francisco

Originally I wanted to tell you about my first week in California. But I’ll have to split my story into two parts, since only San Francisco already takes a lot space!

It takes about 16 houres to travel from Belgium to San Francisco. You can imagine that at my arrival I was kind of exhausted. An eight hour flight from Brussels to Dulles airport at Washington, a three hour wait for our connection and afterwards the final five and a half hours to San Francisco. Though it was a long journey, the United Airlines service made our flights very pleasant. Before my departure I had bought four magazines to keep myself busy on the plane, but that wasn’t necessary at all. United Airlines provides their customers with the latest movies and series! Therefore I was allowed to watch movies on which I didn’t want to spend money such as: ‘What to expect when your expecting’. Definitely flying United again!

In San Francisco we stayed at the Holiday Inn Golden Gate hotel, which I would definitely recommend. Though it may not be as fancy as other hotels, its location is perfect. It’s very near to public transport, such as the famous Cable Cars, and there are plenty of restaurants to dine at in the evening.

San Francisco was gorgeous, but trust me visiting this city is a work out on its own. I had read that there were a lot of hills, and if you’ve ever seen Full House, you’d already know that. But I never expected them to be so steep! After the first day I was already extremely sore! It’s probably a sign that I have to work out when back in Belgium.. Thank God San Francisco has an easy public transportation system! No subways here, but even more busses, trolley busses and last but not least: CABLE CARS!

When visiting San Francisco a Cable Car ride is obliged! It’s so much fun, but sometimes quite scary as well. Note that I’m kind a of a coward when it comes to roalercoasters, etc, so that may have had something to do with it… Try to catch one on the road and not at its departure stop, because then you may need to wait a while. Take the Cable Car towards Nob Hill (/Union Square), which is the main shopping area of San Francisco. They have a stop at Union Square, with stores as Levi’s, Tiffany and co, Macy’s, Victoria’s Secret, etc. Want to visit the SF Abercrombie store? Then stay on the car and hop off at the next stop. Here you’ll find the Westfield San Francisco Centre, which includes a Bloomingdales and Nordstrom. BUT there’s also a more recent new shopping area: FILLMORE STREET.

I only discovered Fillmore Street after my shopping spree. This street has more petite stores with a selection of different brands. Besides a Marc by Marc Jacobs store and an Alice & Olivia store, there aren’t any famous stores in the area. In my opinion it’s easier to find a great fashionable piece over here, than in the Union Square area. Unfortunately time wasn’t on my side…

Before my departure in Belgium, my New York-based, but San Francisco-born friendAndrea had given me some things to do, but unfortunately I only made it to theCheesecake Factory at Macy’s. The cake was impeccible, but the service.. unfortunately not so much. When asking for a table the waitress told us that we needed to wait for half an hour, while both the inside as the outside of the restaurant were almost empty! It’s probably to make it ‘more exclusive’, but I just didn’t have the patience. In stead I just bought a ‘Key Lime Cheesecake’ piece to take out. Eating it at Union Square in the sun was probably as delicious as on the 8th floor of Macy’s. So even if the service isn’t what it should be: TRY IT!

Though I had a great time visiting San Francisco, the city didn’t capture my heart. Is it the weather (it gets freezing and foggy in the evening)? Is it because of the hills? I have no idea! But my guess is that it just didn’t have the time to capture my heart. I was only in SF for two days, which is way to short to feel the SF vibe! I’ve only had the chance to visit the very touristic spots, which were btw very pretty and charming. The Painted Ladies are the most known example out of all the old Victorian Houses in San Francisco. Again, it was a climb up hill, but the houses and neighbourhood were worth every step of the way.

Painted Ladies

Painted Ladies

Victorian House

Victorian House

Depending on your departure point (on your way to the Painted Ladies), you may pass through the Civic Center (City Hall) which surprised me pleasantly. Also Lombard Street (steepest street of San Francisco), which can be very crowded, is worth a visit. The Financial District was quite similar to the one in NYC, with their high buildings, yet the area was smaller and the architecture was more modern.

City Hall

Lombard Street

Lombard Street

Financial District

Towards all tourists: ‘Avoid Pier 39!’. Yes, you do need to see the seals, but besides this wildlife the only thing Pier 39 has to offer is (fat-making) food, food, food. Visiting the Monterey Fisherman’s wharf is more rewarding than the SF one (more about this in the next post).

Pier 39 seals

Foggy Golden Gate

Foggy Golden Gate

Even if SF didn’t capture my heart, I’m sure I’ll be here again one day. If only it was to see the Golden Gate Bridge without fog…

xo

M.

Pied de Poule..*

When the postcard above arrived in my mailbox this morning, it suddenly hit me.. I totally forgot to tell you about my new favorite store! I’ve been postponing it for quite some time and with my exams it also kinda skipped my mind, due to lack of time. BUT thank God, my re-examinations are over. I’m back in ‘holiday mode’ and relaxed! So… let’s meet PIED DE POULE!

I discovered Pied de Poule a while ago through CityZine, a small and free pocketbook with must-dos, must-sees, must-eats and must-visits in different regions in Belgium (such as our Belgian Coast and Antwerp). You can get them at all of the featured places. Every time I see a new edition, I take one with me to be up to date about recent events and new shops in town. And of course I have to check them out as well! The description of Pied de Poule seemed pretty promising: “Exquisite selection of fine designer clothing, shoes and accessories for fashionable women. Monthly novelties. Also, color- and style advice”. I have to admit, the description wasn’t exagerated at all!

When visiting Pied de Poule it was still July, yes SALES! This came in quite handy, because I still didn’t know my travel plans for September. I was brave, bit my tongue and kept my wallet quite closed, which was tough when seeing the FW2012 collection. In the end I bought a Marc by Marc Jacobs summer dress on discount. It is definitely one of my best purchases in the past couple of years. It’s a Jackie Kennedy classic styled dress in dark blue with pale pink accents, long sleeved and a small belt. Very flattering and mature, yet not too old. I’d even be able to wear it when over 30! It’s kind of a ‘forever’ piece!

My Marc by Marc Jacobs Paloma dress

My Marc by Marc Jacobs Paloma dress
Photo Courtesy: The Style Cure

Though Pied de Poule may not be the cheapest shop in town, it’s definitely the most stylish one. Lindsey Standaert, the owner, has great taste. She selects clothing that are perfect assets to every woman’s wardrobe. Every selected piece is a ‘basic’ item with a twist, which makes them unique, gorgeous and worth investing in. The clothes aren’t pieces that you’ll have one year. No, you’ll probably own them for at least five years, if not longer!

These were my favorites:

Top to bottom, left to right: MaxMara Afra Coat / See by Chloé Sweater / Sportmax Dress - back / Pamela Love Claw Bangle / Marc by Marc Jacobs Intergalocktic Bracelet / Sportmax Dress - back / Marc by Marc Jacobs Bowling Bag

Top to bottom, left to right: MaxMara Afra Coat See by Chloé Sweater / Sportmax Dress – back Pamela Love Claw Bangle / Marc by Marc Jacobs Intergalocktic Bracelet / Sportmax Dress – back / Marc by Marc Jacobs Bowling Bag 

Besides fabulous clothing, great accessories are sold as well! With brands such as Wouters & Hendrix, Ba&sh, (soon) Pamela Love and Hipanema, you will be able to choose the right handbag or piece of jewelry to match your outfit.

Pied de Poule just has it all and makes a picture complete. It will be difficult not visiting it every time when I’m at the sea shore!

Pied de Poule 
Rogierlaan 62
8400 Oostende 
Belgium 
Brands: Isabel Marant étoile, Marc by Marc Jacobs, See by Chloé, Paul and Joe sister, Wouters & Hendrix, A.F. Vandevorst, Pamela Love, and many more! 

xo

M.

Sunday morning breakfast..*

Attention all: new tea place to be! Antwerp is full of great ‘coffee houses’, such as CaffènationMademoiselle MoustacheCoffee and Vinyl and Vandoag Is’t. But what we don’t have, are a lot of ‘tea places’. Well today I discovered at least one: My Cup of Tea!

Photo Courtesy: My Cup of Tea

A sunday morning bulky breakfast, is one of my favorite things in the whole wide world, so you can imagine that my expectations were quite elevated. When going somewhere to have breakfast or brunch, I want to be able to enjoy my meal, have a great time in a nice and peaceful setting and be spoiled by a friendly staff. For heaven’s sake, it’s morning, I want to wake up at my own speed and don’t want to deal with someone else’s bad mood in the morning. Well thank God, all of my ‘standards’ were well fulfilled!

It was my first time at ‘My Cup of Tea’ and I was pleasantly surprised by the great breakfast concept. At your arrival you get a piece of paper on which you can check off several ‘breakfast options’ that you want to order. The standard breakfast is: coffee/tea, freshly squeezed orange juice, some bread, cheese and ham. But there are a million things you can add to this list. For instance: salmon, speculoos spread, jam, granola and yoghurt, fresh fruit salad, a mini croissant, a mini pain-au-chocolat, etc…

For once don’t go for the regular Latte or Espresso, but try one of their tea’s! Alina, the owner, has over a 40 different sorts of tea! She’ll tell you how long your tea needs to ‘rest’ in the boiling water, so you’ll get the perfect flavor. You’ll even get an hourglass, so you won’t need to check your watch every 5 seconds!

Photo Courtesy: Zone 03

Wine tastings exist for wine. Well at My Cup of Tea you can actually do it as well, but for tea! Every flavor you drink in the ‘cafe’, you can buy as well afterwards! Don’t forget to check out all of the tea accessories and tea pots. Some of them are simply adorable!

My Cup of Tea

Muntstraat 8

2000 Antwerpen

xo

M.

Radis Noir*

About 10 days ago I celebrated my 22nd birthday. Though, with the exams coming up, I didn’t really have much time to party hardy. So instead I organized some get togethers with my friends, a BBQ with my besties and a dinner with my parents and grand-mother (who you already met here). And honestly that last one was DELICIOUS!

When it’s my birthday, I get to chose were we will have my birthday dinner. Currently it’s still on the parents’ expenses, but that will probably change one day, unfortunately. This year I opted for the restaurant ‘Radis Noir‘. I got to know it through Feeling Magazine. About 6 months ago (or even a longer period of time) they added a small guide of Antwerp to the Magazine. At the time there was a special weekend full of promotion. You could get a glass of Champagne at Step by Step or a goodiebag somewhere else. Radis Noir was one of the participants as well and offered a discount on their four-course menu. Since I couldn’t enjoy all of the promotions myself, I ripped out the places-to-be and some stores, to visit later. That time had finally come for ‘Radis Noir’.

The ‘à la carte’-menu of ‘Radis Noir’ is quite limited and still I had a hard time chosing what I was going to eat. In the end I went for the ‘4x Pure’-menu. This menu exists out of 4 courses. For the big eaters among us, the chef also offers ’10x Pure’-menus.

‘4x Pure’. What could I expect with that? It doesn’t say if you’re getting fish or meat, pasta or potatoes, or ice cream or chocolate mousse as dessert. All I knew was that the food would be ‘pure’. And so it was! In every dish, I could distinguish every ingredient and still all of those tastes blended together so perfectly! This was our menu:

  1. Tartare of Salmon with tomatoes and basil (small appetizer)
  2. John Dory with young green asparagus (and other green vegetables) and a dressing of oranges
  3. Salmon with asparagus
  4. Lamb with braised vegetables
  5. (kind of) Caramalized strawberries with vanilla ice cream
YUM!

YUM!

Not only the food, but also the interior was my cup of tea. It’s very modern and clean. The only colors used are grey and white. You may think it’s very UN-cosy, but nothing could be further from the truth. Due to the indirect lightening, a warm glow falls over the white walls.

For who wants to visit Radis Noir: you may want to wait a bit. In August the ‘Radis Noir’-team will launch ‘Ingredients by Radis Noir’. The chef’s ingredients will gain a key-role in the redecoration of the restaurant. Also, all of the ingredients will be sold. The idea about this concept is to give hobby cooks the opportunity to get ingredients they wouldn’t normally find in the regular supermarkets. For example: the John Dory I was talking about is a fish you can’t get at your Delhaize or even at your fishmonger. And if they do have it, you have to buy an entire fish. Well because ‘Ingredients by Radis Noir’ has good contacts with major food retailers, they will be able to offer their customers just a part of the ingredient needed.

Curious much? Well, don’t hesitate and just GO!

Radis Noir

Desguinlei 186

2018 Antwerp

03/238.37.70

http://www.radisnoir.be

xo

M.

Costa del Silencio brings silence…*

Ever since I was 4 years old I went skiing at least once a year. But this year I took a break. After one month and a half of nothing but studying I expected myself to be exhausted. And my guess was right. Therefore I prefered a week of sun over a week of snow. Just some time to relax, to sleep and simply doing nothing was just what I needed! In the end my trip went to Tenerife..

Leaving Belgium with Moon Boots, I immediately traded my wool sweater into a top! Arriving at our apartment I couldn’t believe my eyes! 100m², 2 bathrooms, 2 bedrooms, and a 12m²  terras with the BEST sunbeds of all time. And I didn’t even mention the amazing sea view! We had the most beautiful sunset every day.

Our apartment was located at the Costa Del Silencio. I have to admit, the place didn’t steal its name. Costa del Silencio definitely brought silence to my life. The village itself is quite deserted, with the exception of several holiday homes, but it is very near to touristic spots such as Los Cristianos, Playa de las Americas and only 45 minutes away from the capital Santa Cruz. Although I enjoyed my stay, I’d never want to spend my summer break on Tenerife. Some places are just too tourist. In Playa de las Americas it is very crowded, all of the hotels and apartment buildings seem to be build on top of each other and you can’t pass by any restaurant without getting the question: “Miss, you want something to eat?”. After a while I just got annoyed with it.

As tourist as Playa de las Americas is, as authentic is El Medano. No massive restaurants, no cheap souvenir shops, only surfers. Yes indeed, El Medano is THE surfspot of Tenerife. Every surfer that visits the isle should take his board with him or rent one at the beach. You won’t find any regular surfer, but therefore all the more kite- & windsurfers.

Wanting to see some culture, we went to visit Tenerife’s capital Santa Cruz. If you want to do some shopping it’s the place to go to on the isle. You will find all of the main Spanish brands going from Massimo Dutti to Zara, Mango and Pull and Bear. The city even has its own El Corte Inglés, which is comparable to Galeria Inno in Belgium. It’s logical that Spanish brands are cheaper in Spain, but even non-Spanish goods are sometimes half their price. You can really make some bargains on Tenerife, since a lot of the things are tax-free. I, for example, bought a Swatch from the SS 2012 collection for only €35 while in Belgium I would have needed to pay €60! Of course I bought some other things, and an outfit inspired on my new stuff you’ll find here.

My new arm candy! Swatch watch and hand-made bracelet
(El Medano)

But finding culture in the capital was much harder. There was only one thing which I really liked. El Mercado de Nuestra Señora de Africa is a semi-indoor market with different small stores. Both locals and tourists are in love with the place. It has several stores with vegetables, fruits, meat and a large fish-hall. But my favorites were the bakeries. Seeing all of those home-made delicious cookies and on some days freshly made churos made me want to taste everything! When you visit, get some cookies there. I assure you, you won’t regret it!

El Mercado

Unfortunately my break only lasted a week, but I enjoyed every minute of it. One day I’ll definitely be going back. Whether I’m young or old. But going in summer will be something I’ll have to think about…

xo

M.

Italian cuisine worth five stars..*

2 JULI 2011

A few weeks ago I went to Italy. I would stay one week near Rome and one week at Lake Garda. Since I already had visited the lake, and Tuscany as well, I knew where I wanted to go for a trip down memory lane. We stayed near a little village called Manerba del Garda. I definately wanted to visit Peschiera, where my father had taken an amazing picture of me with the sunset 8 years ago. But I also wanted to go to Sirmione. This old fortified strongpoint, situated on a peninsula, in the south of the lake, is definately a must see. You’ll find great shops (even with vintage Chanel), the BEST ice-cream of Lombardy (with over 40 flavours!), and delicious food worth of being mentioned in the Michelin Guide.

Because I’m really fond of sunsets above an amazing horizon I wanted to have diner at a terras near the lake and my mother wanted something cosy. I had my mind set for a spaghetti a la vongole. I ate it for the first time in a small restaurant when we wanted to go visit Pompei and I was sold! It’s so delicious and light at the same time. As everybody knows Italy is the country of pasta and pizza and since I am a pastaholic I already knew that I would have gained five pounds when I got back home (thank god it wasn’t the case!). In stead of choosing for a typical italian restaurant, my mother found a hidden “antica tratoria” with lake views and a very intimate terrace.

‘La Speranzina’, is hidden behind a big wooden double door. I took a sneak peek and I was just blown away by it’s beauty. My father immediately realized that this wasn’t just any restaurant and when he got the menu his presumption got confirmed (being a man he was the only one who received the menu with the prices). And while I was searching for my spaghetti a la vongole, I couldn’t find it anywhere! It was almost our last night in Italy so we just took a whole menu. My first course was tagliatelli with asparagus and foie gras. As my second course I chose a tempura of fish (I still don’t know what kind) and vegetables and as my desert Tiramisu (what else?!).

I have to admit, this was the best restaurant I had ever been to! If you ever are in Italy and you want to propose to your girlfriend this is the place to be! She’ll love it, I assure you!

You can find La Speranzina at the Via Dante 6 in Sirmione… or at www.lasperanzina.it

And if you still have a little hole in your belly after dinner, you can always go for an ice cream ;)

xoxo

M.

Toerist in eigen land…

Ondanks dat Brussel maar een half uurtje rijden is van Antwerpen, had ik de stad nog nooit bezocht. Natuurlijk heb ik in het middelbaar wel uitstappen gedaan naar het Atomium en mini-Europa, maar dat kan je natuurlijk niet Brussel noemen… Een dag in de hoofdstad van dit kleine land.

In vergelijking met Antwerpen lijkt Brussel gigantisch. De gids: 100% Brussel leidde me eerst langs het Koningsplein tot de Kruidtuin. Ik wandelde langs de Nationale Bank, de Wetstraat, het Paleis van Schone Kunsten en natuurlijk niet te vergeten het Koninklijk Paleis. Mede door het grauwe weer, vond ik deze buurt niet echt geweldig. Overal zag je graffiti, waren het (naar mijn smaak) niet echt mooie gebouwen en was er weinig leven in de brouwerij.

going to the more beautiful part of the city..

Toch was er 1 plekje dat me ZEER kon bekoren: de enige Delacre-winkel in België. Je vindt deze hofleverancier op Oud Korenhuis 27.  Een ware must-see! Je kan je eigen assortiment koekjes samenstellen, vindt er de meest kleurrijke en originele bewaardozen en ook limited editions “sigaartjes” behoren tot het assortiment. Een echte koekjes/choc-a-holic mag dit niet missen!!

Na de wandeling gingen we (ik was samen met mijn ouders) richting Grote Markt en de Dansaertbuurt. In tegenstelling tot bovenstaande wijk, werd ik wel een fan van dit deel van de stad. Doordat dit gedeelte erg toeristisch is, merk je dat er veel meer aandacht aan het “uitzicht” van de buurt wordt geschonken. Alles is netjes gerestaureerd en proper onderhouden. Daardoor voel je je meer op je gemak in dit deel van Brussel.

Vlak voor je op de prachtige Grote Markt terecht komt, passeer je langs de Stoofstraat. Hier staat het bekendste “ventje” van Brussel, namelijk Manneken Pis.. Enorm klein en toch zo groots in zijn bekendheid. Vanaf de Stoofstraat kom je de ene chocolatier na de andere tegen. Godiva, Leonidas, Neuhaus, en kleinere minder bekende chocolatiers hebben er steevast hun plekje. Eveneens de wafels verkopen er als zoete broodjes. Elke toerist heeft wel een wafel met slagroom in zijn handen. Tussen de Stoofstraat en de Grote Markt is er zelfs een echt Chocolademuseum.

We vervolgden onze wandeling langs de Grasmarkt, de Sint Hubertusgalerijen, de Rue de Boucher tot aan de Antoine Dansaertstraat. Deze straat begint meer en meer bekend te staan als de nieuwe winkelstraat. Replay, G-star, Filippa K, Rue Blanche, enz… zijn er allemaal gevestigd. Eveneens Idiz Bogam (op nummer 76). Vooraan in de winkel vind je de nieuwe collectie, maar achteraan in de winkel heb je een rijke keuze aan prachtige vintage. Je merkt dat de eigenaars erg naar de kwaliteit van de kledingstukken kijken. Ikzelf paste een prachtige groene (met blauw en wit) Diorjurk, met een open rug. Jammer genoeg paste de jurk niet zoals het moest en zal ik moeten verder zoeken naar mijn New Year’s Eve dress…

Jeanneke Pis vind je in een zijstraat van de Rue de Boucher

We eindigden onze wandeling in de Nieuwstraat, eigenlijk zowat de Meir van Antwerpen. Met als verschil dat de Meir VEEL beter is. Ok, de winkels mogen dan hetzelfde zijn en dezelfde dingen verkopen, toch verkies ik nog altijd een brede winkelstraat. De Nieuwstraat is zó smal, dat je heel de tijd moet “zig-zaggen” om op je bestemming te geraken. Frustrerend.

Om onze dag af te sluiten, gingen we uit eten bij Le Rouge Tomate. Dit restaurant stond al erg lang op mijn verlanglijstje. Waarom? Wel de eigenaar heeft eveneens een “Le Rouge Tomate” in New York. Dus móest ik het wel uittesten. Toegegeven, ik heb er de beste kip ooit gegeten! Mals, goed afgekruid, sappig, alles wat een “kipke” maar moet hebben! Perfect!

Zoetebekje als ik ben, had ik natuurlijk nog nood aan een dessert. Mét chocolade natuurlijk. Daarom koos ik voor de “Mi-cuit au chocolat 80% de cacao fondant, poires et sorbet vanille”. Vertaald: een chocolade-Moelleux met peren en vanille-sorbet. Ondanks dat het een echte caloriebom is, blijft het toch mijn favoriete dessert. Heerlijk! De ideale afsluiter van een leuke en verrassende dag! (Al blijven Antwerpen en Brugge toch op 1!)

Erg gezellig!

Café Latino haalt Mexico naar Hasselt!

Café Latino

Hou je van eens lekker uit eten gaan en zeker niet de “alledaagse kost” op je bord te krijgen? Dan moet je zeker eens naar Café Latino in Hasselt. Zoals de naam al doet vermoeden, is dit restaurant Latijns-Amerikaans/Mexicaans/Zuiders getint. Je vindt er een gevarieerde keuken gaande van tapas tot wraps tot pasta’s op Mexicaanse wijze.

Afgelopen weekend ging ik met een goede vriendin een weekendje relaxen in Limburg. Op de agenda stond zaterdag een dagje shoppen in Hasselt en op zondag een dagje shoppen in Maasmechelen Village. Ik had een overnachting geboekt in een hotelletje in Genk. We moesten er dus voor zorgen dat we ‘s avonds ook nog iets te eten hadden. Zo ben ik bij Café Latino terecht gekomen. Het leek ons erg gezellig en niets was minder waar.

We werden erg vriendelijk onthaald en naar ons tafeltje (dat trouwens naast de dj-tafel stond) begeleid. Het viel me meteen op dat heel het restaurant erg kleurrijk was. Zo werd er gebruik gemaakt van oranje, groen, geel en rood. De zuiderse kleuren in combinatie met de Latijns-Amerikaanse muziek zorgde ervoor dat we meteen in die zuiderse sfeer terecht kwamen.

Bar

Toen we het menu in handen kregen, zagen we even de bomen door het bos niet meer. ZOVEEL KEUZE! Je hebt er tapas, tapas-schotels, entradas, vlees-,kip- en visgerechten, pasta’s op Zuid-Amerikaanse wijze, slaatjes, specialiteiten van het huis, vegetarische gerechten en nog een apart menu voor de kinderen. Uit deze opsomming alleen al kan je al raden dat een hele tijd duurt vooraleer je je keuze hebt gemaakt. Ik koos voor de pikante kippenvleugeltjes als voorgerecht en als hoofdgerecht opteerd ik voor de Entomatada con Verdura (= Lasagne met Mexicaanse saus en groenten). Tess koos voor lookbroodjes en Fajitas (= tortilla met kip). Het was allemaal zo overheerlijk dat we onze buiken rond en vol aten.

Even een lookbroodje proeven

Even een lookbroodje proeven

Ondanks dat het restaurant vol zat, had je geen last van rumoer. Je had wat achtergrond geluid, maar het stoorde niet.Dat kwam vooral doordat ik zo onder de indruk was van de gezelligheid. Het was allemaal direct licht, maar het werd gedimt waardoor het niet stoorde. Als je een bezoekje zou brengen aan Café Latino moet je zeker ook letten op het imposante plafond. Er zijn allemaal vasen aan bevestigd. Speciaal, maar erg passend bij de rest van het interieur.

Op zaterdag (bijvoorbeeld het weekend van valentijn) is Café Latino niet alleen een restaurant, maar ook een erg leuke plek om uit te gaan. De tafels worden dan aan de kant geschoven en er wordt een feest gebouwd tot in de vroege uurtjes.

Voor een betaalbare prijs, eens heerlijk een andere keuken proeven? Café Latino is THE place to be! (In Hasselt dan toch 😉 ). Meer informatie kan je vinden op www.cafelatino.be

xoxo

M.