Nénu Restaurant (Brussels)

© Vivi Pham

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Tutu Pham grew up in Nénuphar, the Vietnamese restaurant which his father opened in 1982 in Woluwe-Saint-Lambert. In 2019, he founded Nénu, a neo-Vietnamese spot where he practices anh nhau, aka the art of eating and drinking with small shared plates, a concept practiced in Vietnam long before it became fashionable in France. In a space designed by Studio MurMur (a bar near the entrance and a dining room under a glass canopy, overlooking the kitchens, with marble tables and pale green banquettes), dig into the fun fusion fare, perfectly prepared by chef Robin Froeliger. Expect a series of classics (indisputably good and not-so-greasy Nénuphar pork spring rolls, properly spiced green papaya salad with chili and peanuts, divisive duck tongue sautéed in garlic and chili) and shocking pairings – lamb, smoked eel and chili oil wontons; hot garlic chipirones under a beurre blanc emulsion, that go down easy; mouthwatering grilled Iberian pork chops with bok choy kimchi…. And finally, cool off with a coffee frappé made with mocha ice cream, siphoned crème anglaise and caramelized pecans. // Ringo de Balmalon

FEELING THIRSTY? Cocktails in the same vein (Sesame n Stormy with sesame-infused dark rum, ginger beer and lime) from €13.50 to €15.50, sakes from Titulus in Ixelles (€5-12 a glass), and organic/natural wines that get the job done: Vendange Nocturne, a Burgundy Melon from Pierre-Henri Gadais (€7 a glass), a white from Moravie 7 Radku (€55 a bottle), Mycelium, a Liège orange wine (€60), a Burgundy red from Fanny Sabre (€70).

PRICE: Dishes €8-29.

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