Best waffles in Belgium

Everyone knows how famous and delicious are those crunchy and sweet waffles covered in more amazing things!!! Well, I tried to find the best ones in Ghent, Bruges, Brussels, and Antwerp. Always considering the reviews at Tripadvisor and the advice from locals. Here are some of them:

Bruges:

Gingerbread Tea Room

I know what are you thinking, probably with that name they don´t sell the real thing, the name should be in French or Flemish, but let me tell you it was one of the best waffles I have ever tried, and one of my favorites in all Belgium. It was perfectly cooked, full of fresh fruit and it was a big portion (around 9 euros). The place was very chick, and the staff was friendly. The coffee was good, I like it stronger but I tasted it was a good barista. We had one for two of us and it was hard to finish. The decoration of the place was nice, and it was not crowded.

Lizzies Wafels

For this one, we started walking around and we saw a big queue outside. So, we knew this one was a good place. Each waffle was 7 euros, and any extra had to be asked separately. We ordered two waffles with homemade chocolate sauce and whipped cream.

They were huge and the chocolate sauce was out of this world. Even for us was hard to finish and the staff was very kind, especially the small lady. She welcomed us with a big smile, it looked like she knew we were hungry and the queue was big. I highly recommend this place, and go with an empty stomach, so you don’t waste any food.

Ghent:

MAX

When I was looking for the best Waffles in Ghent, the obvious one is Max. Apparently, Max was the first restaurant to serve Waffles in all Belgium. The restaurant has one part new and another one old. So, I must try it, especially because I read in a blog some locals saying that they go there once a year because of the size and quality and that the price was worthy…well here there are:

On the left, is with chocolate sauce, whipped cream and Vanilla Ice Cream (around 10 euros) and the one down are the Maison, with whipped cream, fruits and Grand Marnier (around 13 euros).

Well, let me tell you that when we arrived the restaurant was empty, just with a few clients and the Chef was outside talking with some friends. Later I realized the reason for this situation.

The service was awful, the waiter was rude and they do not give tap water, only bottle. That is a huge downside for me.

Now, the waffles! As you can see in the photos, the presentation was amazing, that was the only great thing. Our waffles were undercook in the middle, the chocolate sauce was nothing extraordinary, I could not feel the Grand Marnier and the size was normal.

In conclusion, I wouldn’t go back again, I prefer to spend 15 euros per person in another place, but if you want to go, be my guest, maybe I wasn´t lucky 😊

Zwarte Zee

This one was the recommendation of a local because we were looking for one shop called Mokabon, apparently is a coffee shop where they do not sell waffles. Well, the girl from Mokabon suggested us this place, she said the waffles were tasty.

We got there and the store has a nice view of the river, we order one with strawberries and whipped cream (around 7 euros). The waffle wasn’t fresh since we saw the chef heating it in the toaster. This was a disappointment for us because it was our first waffle at Ghent and we want to try the fresh ones but it was ok.

Waffle with strawberries and whipped cream

The price was a little bit expensive, the flavor was ok and the presentation nice. The place was also nice.

Antwerp:

Wafelhuis van Hecke

The best waffles I have tried so far in Belgium. Completely homemade, and if you have any doubts, the owner will take you inside the kitchen and show you the magic. I was so impressed for this place that I went back the next day 😊

The first day I tried strawberries with homemade chocolate sauce. You have to pay an extra for it but it is worthy. The following day, I order the one with cherry sauce and Glenn ordered the bomb you see there.

Brussels:

I learned that there are actually two types of waffles in Belgium, the Liège, and the Brussels style. The first one is my favorite and is the one I have tried the most in Belgium (previous photos). This type has a rectangle shape, big holes lighter in color. The texture is crunchier on the outside and soft in the inside, with a more yeast flavor. The Brussels style is the type you can find on the streets, harder texture, very sweet and loaded with more sweet stuff.

I like both, but I think the Liège style has more science and love! I wanted to try a savory dish with waffles, so I found this place in the middle of Brussels called Peck 47. I had the Drunken Sailor, homemade leeks waffles, poached eggs, gin-cured salmon and psycho sauce. Perfection in one dish, it was designed for success and the staff is amazing as well.

Well, these are all the waffles I have tried in Belgium. I will go back for more, so stay tuned. 😊

Happy eating !

11 days Road Trip Around Ireland and Northern Ireland

 

      Roadtrip map

Last June, we did a Journey of 10 nights and 11 days around the Island and this is how we did it:

2-nights Cork

2-nights Killarney

2-nights Galway

1-night Sligo

1-night PortRush

1-night Belfast

1-night Dublin 

Car Info

We arrived at Dublin Airport and we rented a car in Hertz. Something important is that the price showed in the web page didn’t include taxes or Insurance. We got the full coverage insurance because many people told us about the tiny roads in Ireland.  So, at the beginning the price for 10 days was going to be around 260 euros, plus everything else end up being 700 euros (more than the double). Also, they gave us the choice of returning the car full or empty, their gas price is lower than outside, so we decided to return it empty.

1 day:

The first stop was Rock of Cashel. It is an amazing old church and everything I expected from Irish scenario. Nearby, there is an old abandoned castle, it is very nice and not so touristy, you can see it from the Rock of Castle.

Then we arrived at Cork, where we stayed at a Hostel called Kinlay House. Is a very basic accommodation, breakfast is poor, only toast and jellies. But it was nice to make sandwiches for the day. 

We had dinner at the Fish Wife. If you want real Fish and Chips eat there! They are huge and the flavour is unique. The place is small so ask it for take away and sit in front of the river or in a bar.

 

 

 

 

 

2 day:

We went for a little walk around the town and we end up at Blackrock castle. This one is a museum for kids, it was smaller than we thought. We walk back from there to the city, so we were starving, so our next stop was Franciscan Well, an old brewery with a nice selection of beers and pizzas. A most go if you visit Cork. They have live music and a nice atmosphere.

 

 

 

 

 

3 day:

After breakfast, we went back to the road, our next stop was Kinsale. A beautiful and colorful little fisherman town. We had coffee and scones in a very cozy café called Jo’s Café. The raspberry scone was divine and fresh. It looked like a favorite between the locals.

 

 

After Kinsale we went to Killarney National Park. It was enough time to do the long trail and getting back to the Killarney downtown where our Hostel was. The Black Sheep Hostel was amazing, I highly recommended. The rooms were clean and the beds were private, the breakfast had a nice selection of different toppings for the toasts, cereals and fruits. 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 4:

Dingle Peninsula Day. It is completely worthy and is kind of a short trip in the morning, after lunch we walked around the town. We had dinner in a place called Quinlan’s, it is famous for the fish and chips. They are very yummy, a little bit more restaurant style than the ones in Cork. The portions are big but is expensive, around 15 euros the plate. Later, we finished up in a pub with live Irish music. We tried, as always, the good local beers (Murphy’s and Killarney).

Day 5:

Finally, we did the Ring of Kerry, it is stunning and if you go early the tourist buses are not a problem. From here, we went directly to Cliffs of Moher. The place was crowded but since is very big you cannot realized it, giving you a lot of opportunities for photos without people. 

 

 

Then we did Burren National Park on our way to Galway. It is worthy, we thought that we were in another planet. 

We arrived at Galway in the evening, so we checked in the Hostel (Snoozles Hostel) and went to bed. This one was a new Hostel, it was comfy but a felt I was in a student residence.

 

 

 

Day 6:

We walked around the city and we went to the Claddagh Cottage, where they offered us a cup of tea and a scone. There was a very nice guy, who told us a little bit of the history of the Claddagh ring, cottage and Galway. 

After our journey around every possible place in Galway, we had an early dinner in a place called The Pie Maker. It is a very small and cozy place where you can find delicious pies! My favourite was the Chicken and Mushrooms with Irish Whisky Sauce. Glenn had a Beef and Dark beer pie, and they recommend us to have one that was practically an Irish Breakfast in a pie. Since we already had enough Irish Breakfast on our trip and so more to go, we decided to skip it. The ambiance around Galway at night is amazing, it is very artistic and if you meet the Galway Street Club, you will enjoy of a great show for free.

 

 

 

 

 

Day 7:

Time to go to Sligo, but before that, we tooked the long way to meet the National Park of Connemara and Kylemore Abbey. Definitely, they are worth to visit, the scenarios in the Connemara park are speechless and the Kylemore Abbey looked nice but it was under refurnishing, so we could not enter. Probably we will visit next time.

After the long drive, we got to Sligo, where there is a fairy tale mountain and a completely different scenario of Ireland. It is a little bit more rural but the people is still friendly and a little bit less stress. There, we stayed at one Bed & Breakfast called Benbulben Farmhouse. I have to be honest with you, I chose this place because the Homemade Scones they make every morning and thank God, I did it. The place is amazing! I want to live there; the owner is super cute and helpful and her cooking skills are spectacular.

We had lunch at a place called Henry’s Bar and Restaurant. Our host recommended this place to us. The food is very Irish, if that could be an adjective, big amount and cheap. It was full of locals so if you want the real thing go there. It was also very closed to the B&B. As lunch was big, we ate some popcorn for dinner that our Host made for us.

Day 8:

We had the most amazing breakfast and leave early to visit Donegal and London Derry. Two completely different towns. We saw the Donegal castle and the controversial paintings in London Derry. 

 

 

 

 

As our objective was to stay the closer be could of Giant Causeway, our accommodation was in a little town called Portrush, only 10 minutes by car. The got and an amazing Airbnb in front of the sea. Our dinner was TESCO pizza, not the fanciest think but still delicious.

 

 

 

 

 

 Day 9:

We woke up early and took the road to try to see Giant Causeway without people. We didn´t achieved it but still is amazing. And make sure you look for the legend before you go. It makes it more magical.

On our way to Belfast, we passed through the Dark Hedges and the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, the first one is practically free, so there is a lot of tourists taking pictures. The Rope Bridge was also crowded but some friends told us that it wasn’t worthy to pay for passing the bridge, that the queue is long and in the other island there is not a lot of things to seem so we skip it.

When we arrive to Belfast, it was raining but that didn’t stop us to walk around the city and check the amazing paintings in the Cathedral Quarter and check the amazing architecture of St. Anne’s Cathedral and the City Hall.

 

 

 

 

 

We stayed at a nice hotel called Tara Lodge. The place was fancy, but that is our way to go, the last night of the trip must be a good place with nice breakfast. It is very close to the Belfast University, so we wait until the next day to visit it.

 

 

 

 

 

Day 10:

Our first stop was breakfast. It was delicious and they suggested us to try the porridge, Glenn doesn’t like it but I gave it a tried, especially if was a peculiar flavour as the Whisky one. It was amazing, but I would put more Whisky… 😉

The visit to the University was nice and short, it is a spectacular campus and you can see how proud they are about the famous students.

Then, we started the last part of our journey. The last stop before Dublin was Brú na Bóinne, Tombs from the Neolithic period completely well conserved. Our intention was to enter Newgrange but the next tour was late and we had to return the car around 5:00pm, so we went to Knowth. We don’t regret this decision, Knowth is the biggest of the three tombs and you can walk to the top and have a nice view of the landscape.  Also, you can enter in one part and see how is in the inside.

Well, we went back to Dublin airport to return the car and took a bus for staying the last night in Dublin. We spent only one night in Dublin because we had already been there, for as a recommendation stay in Dublin at least 3 nights to get to know it better. We stayed at my accommodation for the semester so no more hotels.

Obviously, in Dublin we went to a pub with live music called The Porterhouse. They have craft beer and a nice atmosphere. We had dinner in a place called Bunsen, they specialize in US style burgers, having only 3 types no cheese, with cheese and double. The burgers are really tasty, but what you have to try in there is the Chocolate Milkshake, is super chocolately. 

 

 

Day 11

Finally, the last morning we spent in Ireland we decided to go for souvenirs after we had breakfast in Brother Hubbard, because you must say goodbye from their pulled pork. Also, we got a snack to get to the airport at Augier Danger Donuts, a delicious red velvet and black forest donuts.

Well, that was everything. It was a long journey 1900 (we start with 90 km, it was a new car :)= but I think we covered almost everything we want to see. 

If you plan to visit I recommend going at the end of May, when the weather is a little better and there are not many people, so the prices of everything are cheaper. 

Please let me know if you have some questions. 

Happy traveling!

Food, Sweets and Coffee places in Dublin

Food, sugar and Coffee Bucket list Dublin

Probably, when you think about Irish food you don’t think about the sweet stuff and coffee. Well, I used to think like that and 6 months living there showed me how wrong I was. Dublin is the perfect place when you want to satisfy your sweet cravings and a nice cup of good barista coffee. All the places I mention are in Dublin 1, 2, 7 or 8, because that were I used to live, and since Dublin is 100% walk-able I didn’t move to much hehe.

There are coffee shops everywhere in Dublin, and compare to other countries, they want you to stay more time in their shops. That means the coffee shops are student and workers friendly. A fact is that Irish like light coffee, I prefer it a little bit stronger but is still it is enough caffeine to keep you moving. Here are the best coffee shops and dessert places I found in Dublin:

Accents Coffee & Tea Lounge: Perfect place for working or meeting a friend. The place is big and is full of sofas. The big coffee is really big, and the desserts are really good, especially the peanut bar.

  • Peanut Slice
  • Huge cappuccino

Keoghs Café: The coffee is really good but is a popular place so it is hard to find a place, and it is no too big. The quality is very nice and the place is very alive.

Beanhive Coffee: The coffee is nice and they do designs on your cappuccino. The place is small so be prepared to do a queue. The Irish breakfast was amazing and huge!

  • Cappuccino
  • Vegetarian Irish Breakfast
  • Classic Irish Breakfast

Café 147: The coffee is really nice, and if you are hungry the sandwiches are outstanding, try the chicken club….trust me!

  • The 147 Club
  • The 147 Reuben

Queen of tarts: This one is a must in Dublin, I went there almost 2 times per month. The coffee is good, they have hot chocolate with Baileys and the cakes….. well let me tell you my two favorites… Victoria Sponge and The Pecan Fudge Tart 😊. The food is really yummy too, especially the soups. It gets very busy so go with time. There are two, very close to each other, I prefer the small one, it is cozier.

  • White Choco cheesecake
  • Bailey´s hot chocolate
  • Soup of the day
  • Chocolate pecan pie
  • Victoria Sponge

Lovinspoon: The coffee is cheap and strong, good quality and breakfast are cheap too.

  • Irish Breakfast with a pancake
  • Omelette

Brother Hubbard: I must mention it, even is very popular and there is even two of them in Dublin the food is delish also the coffee and the pastries. Go with time to wait for a table.

  • Avo on toasts with poached eggs
  • Cinnamon strolls and capuccino

Oolong Flower Power: This one was my second option if Accents was full, is not very popular but the coffee is ok, the cups are big and is quiet. Matcha tea is a must try.

La Pausa Café: This one is a small and cozy café. The quality is high and the barista was for me the best in Dublin. Nice place to spend an afternoon.

Library Bar: If you want to try the famous Irish Coffee and Baileys Coffee this could be your place. As those drinks have alcohol (a reasonable amount) the price is around 7 euros each. The place is situated at a Hotel, so it is fancy and comfy. I felt like drinking coffee in someone’s Livingroom with a nice view of the street. It is a nice place to go alone or with friends.

  • Bailey’s coffee

Stage Door Café: I found this one looking in google for the best Irish coffee in town if you go prepare for a real shot of alcohol. The place is nice and small, the staff is friendly and they give you recommendations. The coffee was nice, it is not my style because apparently, you cannot stir it, so that makes it very strong. The food looked amazing and it was full of locals, so if you go and try it tell me 😊

Irish coffee

Now, some mentions for the sugar addicts!

Camerino: Amazing pastries, my favorite was the Peanut Butter Brownie and some mini donuts.

Augier Danger Donuts: Crazy combinations of Donuts. I tried the special edition donut paired with a Guinness (one of the most amazing things I have tried). Also, the Red Velvet and the Black Forest one is very delicious. I want to try the peanut butter and Jam but was sold out, if someone tries it please let me know.

Coco Bó: Nice Hot Chocolate and Milkshakes.

Butlers Chocolate Café: Just 4 words Dark Chocolate Mocha.

Well is a nice Bucketlist to start! Please let me know what do you think or if I missed one, because I would like to go back and try it.

Happy eating!