30 hours in Antwerp
I'm heading to Antwerp for a bit of shopping this weekend and would like to know what delicatessens and traiteurs I need to visit, what regional food specialties I should sample and/or take back to Amsterdam with me, and most importantly the best place for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I want a good pastry laden breakfast with strong coffee, two good lunches that need not be fancy but tasty and special (i.e. neighborhood, ethnicity of cuisine, famous for a certain dish, etc.), and one dinner in a brasserie-style restaurant patronized by locals that serves AUTHENTIC Flemish cuisine. Please share your any and all of mouthwatering experiences with me!
I recommend lunch at the Brasserie den Artiste, which is down the Nationalstraat toward the Museum of Fine Arts. I have had two excellent Flemish specialities there - the carbonade and the endive wrapped in ham and baked with mashed potatoes and cheese. A friend also had the stoemp which he thought was quite good. It's an art deco sort of place with marble table tops and bar; wrought iron, etc and big windows overlooking the MFA out in the "island" where 8 or so streets come together. Some good windowshopping - and a cheese shop whose name and exact location escape me - as you walk there. When Nationalstraat ends, bear to your right, sort of toward 2:00, to continue to the MFA.
The specialities are all written on a big board haging on the wall - when I ws there they did NOT also appear ont he menu, which was itself was a tad disappointing (sandwiches, pasta, as I too was after regional favorites..) But it's a cozy atmosphere and the dishes I've had were excellent.
It's been awhile since I was in Antwerp. The only establishment I clearly remember was a bar with 1,000+ types of beer. They have a thick catalog of all the different beers stored in their cellar, including quite a few Belgian brews from small makers. I don't remember the name of the place, but I do recall that it is on Jerusalemstraat. Have fun, and take a taxi back to your hotel!