Year of the Pig celebrated in style at Brussels "institution"

Chinese New Year is the annual Chinese festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar.

The festival is usually referred to as the Spring Festival in mainland China, and is one of several Lunar New Years in Asia.

It is celebrated all over the world (including in countries like Vietnam) and, of course, Brussels is not missing out on the Chinese “Year of the Pig.”

On Friday, 8 February, “Gallery Resto-Boutique”, one of the longest established restaurants in Brussels, plans to mark the occasion in real style.

This fine Vietnamese restaurant, situated in the shadow of the city’s imposing Palais de Justice, has come up with an extra special festive menu for its band of loyal guests.

The evening on Friday will start with a “happy aperitif” (a glass of champers), followed by a wonderful 5 course meal.

This comprises seafood soup, salad with sesames and battered scampi, cod with soya sauce, duck magret with kumquat sauce and, finally, a plate of mocha. Things are nicely rounded with tea or coffee.

It all makes for a great way to start the New Year but, as the evening is expected to be particular popular, pre-booking is highly recommended.

To make things all the more special, you can also expect an appearance from that most traditional of Chinese customs: a lion dance.

The restaurant, which marked its 30th anniversary last year, has been owned by many years by the very friendly Lanh Pham Thi.

Most of her customers have not only remained loyal ever since but have also introduced their children to the delights of this lovely Vietnamese restaurant. It means a whole new generation of diners are now among the regulars here. Given the quality of the food and also the remarkably reasonably prices that should not come as much of a surprise.

Three decades down the line, the restaurant remains more popular than ever. That is partly thanks to its wonderful position, just around the corner from the imposing Palais de Justice, but mostly due to the fact that it can be relied on for great food, great service and great prices.

Dining here takes place in a refined atmosphere far from the cheesy kitsch of some Asian eateries. You are seated in ultra-comfortable cream-coloured armchairs surrounded by subtle lighting and all in a casual atmosphere. The very welcoming owner has added beautiful paintings and furniture, some directly from Vietnam, and some personal touches, which complete the harmonious décor.

With the addition of nice service, the scene is set to sample some great Vietnamese cuisine. The restaurant, located very close to a Metro line, has 65 tables and is also suitable for group meetings, birthdays and private dinners.

The redesigned restaurant (closed on Sundays) is very welcoming with a zen atmosphere and mixes Far East traditions with inspirations from contemporary cuisine.

So, come on, what better reason is there to celebrate the new Vietnamese year. The pig symbolizes good luck and you will certainly be in luck in you dine at this terrific place!

Gallery Resto-Boutique

Rue du Grand Cerf 7, Brussels

02 511 80 35

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Martin Banks

Martin Banks

Martin Banks is a highly qualified journalist with many years experience of working within the EU institutions. He is an occasional, and highly valued, contributor to EU today, writing on a wide variety of issues.

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