Do you agree that some places never get old or cliché?! I think Au Vieux Saint Martin is one of this places in Brussels. A Belgian brasserie which has a history behind everything , the paintings, tables, menu design, and of course the family history.
We were kindly welcomed by Mr.Albert-Jean Niels , the owner of the restaurant , guided to the bar to have a drink until our table get ready. They don't have reservation and usually all the tables are full , so you can have a drink at bar until they can prepare you a suitable table.
Joseph Niels (1890-1940) became the director of the restaurant La Taverne Royale at the Queens galleries.In 1924, after he return from England and his experience in Savoy Hotel as a butler. He invented the recipe of the Filet Américain in Brussels, which is the one of the most famous dishes in Belgium.
In 1926, he founded the hôtel restaurant Canterbury at the Boulevard Emile Jacqmain in memory of the British Isles.After Joseph died in an accident in 1940, his two sons Albert (1917-1978) and Georges (1919-2000) took up his work.
We had the best table of the restaurant which Bill Clinton had in 1994. There was something remarkable about this place which was making you feel comfortable and delightful by the quality of the food and service. I overlooked the fact that the staffers, as impeccable as they were, seemed they programmed for service. In my opinion and experience of my food blogging, rarely you can have the both quality and service at the same time, because of the stability of this kind of restaurant ,they are not costumer oriented anymore. Although, for being significant to all generations, you need to prior with customers and social medias.
This beautiful menu was always a question mark in my mind. Mr.Niels explained us that this is about birth of his two children and the creative artist draw this beautiful hand writing on from his foot print in the snow, and this is the result of what he draw.
We've ordered salmon carpaccio and marbled goose liver and duck. The salmon was wonderfully sliced.
For main dish, we've experienced well-known American tartar and Entrecôte steak which cooking is spotlessly correct and smell of grilled meat made you hungry, the fresh ingredients shimmer on our plates, all the flavors made sense perfectly like the crispy fries and the traditional mayonnaise recipes of Belgian , the ambiance of the room was dignified in a way that made you realize how you really enjoy eating here and will definitely want to come back !
After all of these foodie experience : It should be dessert, especially, when you are in love with this part. They suggested us to try mousse au chocolate which I couldn't make any comment, it was delicious. Then we tried a fantastic sorbet, topped with a raspberry sauce, so soft, so smooth, it seems to have blown apart.
You can always read more about Au Vieux Saint Martin on their website.
Address: Place du Grand Sablon 38, 1000 Bruxelles
Phone: 02 512 64 76