Chocolate, chips, waffles – Belgium has long exported some of the world’s favourite treats. And so with that in mind, we’re delighted when we hear about this new Belgian eatery in JLT.
Granted, the country’s cuisine isn’t hard to find in Dubai (hello, multiple Belgian Cafés and Café Belge), but when it comes to chips and mayo there’s always room for one more on the list.
Le Petit Belge sits in the Pullman JLT – not an overly-inspiring location – so we’re pleasantly surprised to find a lively scene on a weeknight (though this could be due to the daily 4pm to 8pm happy hour).
With sport on the TV and a pleasant hum of chatter, we pull up a stool at the bar.
The atmosphere is so buzzing that we’re persuaded stay at this spot longer to try some pre-dinner nibbles. And since the bar bites list is essentially the starters selection from the restaurant menu, we’re not missing out.
Everything sounds lipsmackingly, and belt-bustingly good.
We opt for lobster and crab rolls and a portion of cheese croquettes to kick us off.
Portions are huge, but with quantity comes quality.
The croquettes are perfectly crisp outside and gooey in the centre and paired with a sticky pear dipping sauce.
The sweet lobster and crab meat is lightly dressed and nestled into a buttery brioche bun.
After a breather we move into the restaurant (which is quieter) and onto (equally large) mains.
A Flemish beef stew is top-notch, with tender meat draped in a rich, moreish gravy.
The trio of mussels (coming in garlic cream, Roquefort and Thai curry sauces) is tasty enough, but sadly doesn’t wow, though the crispy, fluffy fries do.
Stuffed, we reluctantly pass on the puds. But we’ll be back (and possibly starting in reverse with the giant Belgian waffles next time).
The bill (for two) 1x lobster and crab rolls Dhs69 1x cheese croquettes Dhs48 1x Flemish beef stew Dhs78 1x trio mussels Dhs165 Total (including service) Dhs376
The bottom line Belgian comfort food at its best.
Le Petit Belge JLT