GIST/ANTWERPEN/150115/ www.ilbullo.be

I had the pleasure of meeting GIST’s chef Gigi during the Knuthenlund Native Cooking Award in Denmark last year where he was part of the Belgian Team…I did not only discover that he’s a guy passionate about his cooking but also that he could cook and stay focussed in very challenging conditions 😉 So….a visit to his Antwerp based restaurant was on my list for 2015…!!!

We were welcomed with an assortment of high quality cured meat cuts and a chickenliver cream that was evenly delicious,served with nice bread and butter…As I always like to give carte blanche to the chef I asked Gigi to ‘put something together’ for us…

We started with some raw veg (Jerusalem Artichoke, raw, a first time for me, Baby Onion, Radish) served with a very well made dip of anchovy and cream…a great match for the vegetables. Next was a beef tartare with rocket/rucola and shavings of matured egg yolk (yes yes, that actually seems to exist) and dried and smoked tuna roe….just spectacular in it’s simplicity…would have this dish any day…even for breakfast!

Next up was a little dish of smoked eel, fresh cow milk cheese, assorted roots and chirvel….fresh, earthy, smoky….yummie! This was followed by a slice of swordfish, a spinach cream and chard….I was very impressed by the quality and taste of the sword fish…top.

The main was beautifully aged beef with green veg and creamy polenta….very very good…

We ended the meal with some cheese and a succulent peach sabayon accompanying a dessert based on pear…a real treat….

Wine list is very interesting and we choose the deliciously zingy and fresh La Sorga in white….

This was a great discovery of recommendable restaurant serving simple, tasty preparations prepared with high quality ingredients…and above all with a lot of passion….respect!!!!

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