Best of

Where to spritz in style – summertime not required!

Unpopular opinion, mais hautement vérifiée : les Aperol Spritz ne se boivent pas qu’en été ! S’il est préférable d’abandonner l’idée trop rangée qu’il faille attendre les premières vagues de chaleur pour se plonger dans la boisson gaiement orangée, encore faut-il savoir où le déguster.

  • Date published
  • share

Where to spritz in style – summertime not required!

© Maurine Toussaint

The unofficial, yet highly verified verdict is in: Aperol Spritz isn’t just for summer! While it’s time to drop the old-hat idea that you have to wait for the first rays of summer sun before enjoying this wondrously day-glo orange drink, you still need to know where to find the best mix. To help you, Le Fooding has hand-picked stylishly sparkling spots whose unrivalled cocktails carry the same weight. All paired with signature dishes, skillfully stitched together and in the best possible taste!

The Catch

Vamos a la playa… even if there is no sun! After taking over this old Ostend watering hole from their sister Julie, Jim and Tommy Coopman have gone all out with this bar with indomitable dandy style, boasting the holy trinity of cocktails, seafood and pizza, come rain or shine. Don’t be fooled by the marble-topped wooden bar and the sound of Sékouba Bambino pumping out the speakers: your typical seaside shack is not a patch on The Catch when it comes to mixing an extra-chilled Aperol with some ultra-local fish and chips. As the saying goes: Spritz, sea, sand.

The Catch – Hertstraat 6, 8400 Ostende

Pilar

There’s nothing like a hotel bar and restaurant to roll play a sensual cocktail scene from a movie… especially one that’s holed up in a manor renovated by interior architect Sam Peeters and serial restaurateur Christophe Ysewyn, overlooking the Royal Museum of Fine Arts and adding some seventh-art bang for your buck. After sipping on a well-balanced Aperol Spritz at the concrete bar, locals and hotel guests alike migrate towards the massive terrace to rehearse their favorite scenes, this time paired with some mushroom karaage and a lentil dip with chili oil. Aaaaand cut!

Pilar – Leopold de Waelplaats 34, 2000 Anvers

‘t Kanon

In its past life, this magnificent Ghent café with a stunningly huge terrace used to be a clothes store and a pub, before being renovated from floor to ceiling in 2021. All that’s left is the original terrazzo floors, while the rest – a central zinc-topped bar, dark wooden paneling and caramel-colored imitation leather banquettes – is thanks to the interior designers at Altu. As night falls and the lights are low, the best way to take it all in is by keeping your whistle well lubricated, with an Aperol Spritz in one hand and your pick of some darn tasty spoils in the other. For us? A cult-favorite chicken croquette with a squid ink and spicy chorizo oil filling.

‘t Kanon – Meerseniersstraat 17, 9000 Gand

De Republiek

About bloody time! Apéro time, that is. Especially when enjoyed on the lush terrace of this much-loved restaurant-café-cinema in Bruges, which fosters positive impact initiatives and creative entrepreneurship. With its bloomin’ lovely décor (a jungle of trees, plus a decidedly plant-forward menu to match), it’s the perfect place to chillax while sipping on an Aperol Spritz… Even better when paired with the signature dish, a Nagasaki, which bears no relation to the Japanese city: a Middle Eastern-inspired stew packed with potatoes, broccoli, savoy cabbage and ponzu, plus some wonderfully fluffy naan bread to mop it all up. It’s nature’s finest!

De Republiek – Sint-Jacobsstraat 36, 8000 Bruges

L’Altitude

Drawing inspiration from art deco style, Japanese hi-fi listening bars and their 5,000-strong collection of funk, hard bop and Afro records, Thomas Mamakis and Jérôme Ronsmans take after-work drinks to new heights in the Forest neighborhood with their beatbox L’Altitude – not without an amazeballs line-up whipped up by their partner, Camille Jadoule, in the kitchen. Always at the top of its game, this hot spot takes us to dizzying heights as we willingly knock back an Aperol Spritz, Italo disco-style, with as a B-side some lovely roast carrots pimped out with chickpeas, apricot, garam masala, tamarind yogurt and coconut oil. Spin back!

L’Altitude – avenue Molière 2, 1190 Forest

Still thirsty? Things are spritzing up at Les Potes au Feu over in Namur, where they serve the cocktail alongside a bao with a smooth ginger chicken stuffing and a honey sriracha glaze; so too at Piola in Brussels with its Topeana pizza with a fior di latte base, San Marzano tomatoes, Italian salsiccia, Tropea red onions and stracciatella; or even at La Cantinetta in Liege, paired with a cacio e pepe ricotta croquette…. Discover (and save) our list of spritzy spots in the Fooding app!

  • share
The 2nd edition of the Belgium guide is available for pre-order!

Discover the latest selection of the Kingdom’s 350 best addresses (restaurants, bars, cellars, shops and bedrooms), an award’s list celebrating this year’s favorite spots, and a magazine section featuring 16 articles exploring the margins of the food world, its hidden stories and some of its most taboo subjects.

2024 Le Fooding Belgium guide frontcover
Pre-order now!
About

Le Fooding is a print and digital guide to all the restaurants, chefs, bars, stylish hotels and B&Bs that make up the “taste of the times,” plus an annual awards list for new establishments across France, a series of gastronomic events, a tool that allow you to make reservations at some fantastic bistros, and an agency specialized in event planning, content production and consulting… And after conquering France, Belgium is Le Fooding guide’s latest playground!

Fooding® is a registered trademark.