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Ballekes Grand Place: Brussels BELGIUM (Restaurant Review) by bengy

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· @bengy ·
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Ballekes Grand Place: Brussels BELGIUM (Restaurant Review)
<a href="https://travelfeed.io/@bengy/ballekes-grand-place-brussels-belgium-restaurant-review"><center><h3>Read this post on TravelFeed.io for the best experience</h3></center></a><hr />


<div class="text-justify">

<center>![IMG_20191213_182108.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T102519798Z-IMG_20191213_182108.jpg)</center>

When you are travelling, one of the most important things to know is WHERE ARE YOU GOING TO EAT! This is especially important when you are travelling as a freelance musician, and you have limited amounts of time to find a restaurant and a limited budget (I always like to stash some of my per diem for personal use, and not food!). 

Luckily, I have a friend who scouts out places that are near where we are giving concerts (when that was happening...) so that we don't waste any time between the stage rehearsal and the concert start. We often will only have 2 hours maximum from finish of rehearsal to being live on stage... so, every minute counts! 

Unfortunately, that often rules out places that are going to be busy or slow... so, we are always looking for nice balance of affordability, speed and quality!

On this particular evening in Brussels, we found a Ballekes near our concert venue that fit the bill perfectly. At the time, we hadn't realised that it was actually a bit more like a chain of eateries in Belgium... we were just looking for something in the busy tourist area that wasn't going to completely gouge us whilst serving up subpar food!

# <center>The Space</center>

<center>![IMG_20191213_182704.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T103316993Z-IMG_20191213_182704.jpg)</center>

Ordering is done at a cafeteria sort of set up. From the outside, it is a nice and quaint little area for eating and ordering. During the winter, it was a pleasant respite from the rain and cold weather outside... the promise of cosy place to eat was quite enticing!

<center>![IMG_20191213_182838.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T103325203Z-IMG_20191213_182838.jpg)</center>

There is a very limited seating area downstairs. We ended up moving away from this area as it was subject to the constant cold draughts of air from the opening and closing of the door as people came in and out of the eatery. 

<center>![IMG_20191213_182841.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T103332215Z-IMG_20191213_182841.jpg)</center>

Upstairs, was a similarly limited seating area but with much less foot traffic. With the heating and the cooking downstairs, this area started to get quite warm... especially if you have come in from the cold and still are rugged up! It's really summer weather up in the attic!

Pleasant in the winter, but I do wonder if it gets unbearable in the warmer month?

<center>
![IMG_20191213_183016.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T103337192Z-IMG_20191213_183016.jpg)</center>

The lighting and décor were pleasant and cosy. Lots of wood and plants gave a nice ambience to the eatery... and the whole building really had the feel of someone's personal kitchen space. In many ways, it resembled a little home cafe more than a restaurant. 

# <center>The Menu</center>

<center>![IMG_20191213_182306.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T103307447Z-IMG_20191213_182306.jpg)</center>

So, the menu was a distinctly Belgian meatballs and frites inspire menu. Different types of meatballs with lots of interesting sounding sauces with a side of perfectly cooked Belgian chips. It's a limited menu, but it is a perfect menu for the colder months. Actually, if my stomach could handle it, I would have it every week!

The menu caters for vegetarians as well, with a Vegan meatball... and the sauces all sound quite interesting, although with my uncertain reaction to cheeses and creams, I tend to avoid these foods right before a concert. Honestly, I can't imagine what could be worse than performing in a packed concert hall with your stomach threatening to empty itself out in as many ways as possible! Ha... this is what my nightmares look like... 

# <center>The Food</center>

<center>![IMG_20191213_183655.jpg](https://img.travelfeed.io/bengy%2F20210221T103342528Z-IMG_20191213_183655.jpg)</center>

On this occasion, I got myself two meatballs... one topped with a Trappist beer based sauce and the other with a more Italian inspired tomato based sauce... of course, with a side of lovely crispy Belgium frites for dipping in the sauce!

Both sauces were great, although, I would have to say that I was much more partial to the Trappist beer based sauce. I wouldn't turn down either sauce, but there is something about the Trappist sauce that really evokes the Belgian stews and other winter cooking. It also goes much better with the frites than the tomato based one. 

It might be just me, but the Italian inspired sauce had my mind thinking that it would be better suited with pasta rather than with crispy chips!

# <center>The Experience</center>

This is sort of the European take on the American "fast-food". There are many traditional European foods that do lend themselves to the model of fast and efficient dining, and these meatballs and frites dishes do manage it. The sauces are relatively easy to have on hand, and there is an ongoing chain of cooking meatballs and frites, and so from time of order through to seating and eating is on the order of 5-10 minutes at most. 

Personally, I prefer this in comparison to the messy burgers and soggy chips experience from the multinational burger chains. I'm sure that it is only a small step up in terms of health and nutrition, but I still feel better eating this sort of faster food than the American versions. 

Definitely will return to these eateries in the future when I have need for a fast and quick feed! Or just a place to eat slowly and sit down away from the cold of the outside!

# <center>Opening Times</center>

Monday	Closed
Tuesday	Closed
Wednesday	Closed
Thursday	12–2:30pm, 6–9:45pm
Friday	12–2:30pm, 6–9:45pm
Saturday	12–3pm, 6–10pm
Sunday	12–3pm, 6–9:30pm

# <center>Contact Details</center>

Address: Rue des Chapeliers 3, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Website: http://www.ballekes.be/






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<hr /><center><em>View this post <a href="https://travelfeed.io/@bengy/ballekes-grand-place-brussels-belgium-restaurant-review">on TravelFeed</a> for the best experience.</em></center>

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