So, it’s the end of another epic 3* restaurant…Hertog Jan, better known as HJ, near Bruges (B) closed its doors yesterday…or not?
Indeed, every end is a new beginning and HJ will rise again, like a Phoenix from the flames, adapted to what fine dining seems to become more and more, conceptual in some cases, downscaled and more focussed on an intimate, high end experience in others…like here…
Gert and Joachim have had the perfect journey, from the simple, cosy restaurant with traditional dishes on the menu, they have lifted their restaurant to the highest level, with years and years of hard work and dedication. The ultimate reward being the 3* and the move to their new restaurant in Zedelgem, just outside of Bruges, becoming a worldwide culinary reference when it comes to fine dining.
Gert became an authority in the 3* world, especially in Japan, and foodies from all over the world made their way to the beautiful farmrestaurant in Zedelgem….
The last time I saw these two best friends at work, they delivered a totally brilliant performance, serving genuine 3* food to over 500 guests at a dinner hosted by Michelin in Ghent….worldclass these boys, no doubt about it.
Gert and Joachim, a big thank you for what has been…and so looking forward to what will be…your stars will never fade… Proud of what you have achieved and of how you contributed to the reputation of Belgian gastronomy and Bruges.