restaurant

Cocotte

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Bingo! Infiltrating a dreary industrial area along the N50 highway, Cocotte sure puts on a big show. This canteen with unfussy decor and brilliant cuisine is run by a couple, who are partners in business and in life. In the kitchen, Anthony Derrico (who worked at D’Eugénie à Émilie in Saint-Ghislain) cooks up vegetarian-friendly cuisine with touches from around the world, with a menu featuring three starters and three casserole mains, served by Natacha Kapuszinski. That lunch: stunning red lentil risotto, sheep’s milk cream and hazelnut praline with smoked paprika; tortilla de patatas, preserved lemon aioli and thyme oil; and adôwè (a white bean mash) with chicory braised in peanut oil and celeriac pickled in ginger and bay leaf. In the self-service pots, take your pick (or not!): bewitching M’chermel chicken (cooked in a tagine with preserved lemon and onion) with some tip-top couscous; casarecce alla vecchia bettola (creamy tomato sauce infused with vodka); or a seasonal veg red curry with giant beans. We were so stuffed we had no room for the cream puff or the pastel de nata afterwards. The added bonus? An anti-waste option (€12.90 per dish + side dish) that you can heat up at home. // Alain Maes

FEELING THIRSTY? Belgian brews! Beers from Saison Dupont, Blanche des Honnelles, Paix Dieu… (€4 to €5.50), a Chant d’Éole bubbly (€55 a bottle), artisanal cider from the Vander Maelen farm in Ellezelles (€25), orangeade and lemonade produced in Villers (€2.50), and Vander Maelen apple-pear juice (€3).

PRICE: Set menus €23.90 (lunch) and €29.90 (dinner), desserts €7.50.

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