Bert Meewis of Slagmolen is Chef of the Year in new Gault&Millau
Flanders is not short on world-class restaurants, with several hundred making it into the new Gault&Millau for Belgium and Luxembourg
‘Expertise and serenity’
This year Bert Meewis of the Slagmolen in Oudsbergen, Limburg, has been named Chef of the Year. Slagmolen, which also has two Michelin stars, is situated inside an old water mill in an idyllic rural setting.
The jury was impressed by Meewis’s refusal to spend time and energy on trendy food fashions, preferring to update and perfect classic French and Belgian dishes.
“We have chosen someone who is goal-oriented and very focussed, who runs a kitchen with expertise and serenity at its core,” said Gault&Millau CEO Marc Declerck. “In the kitchen or on the plate, sincerity is at the heart of this restaurant. A fresh and well-executed take on classic dishes has been on the rise for a few years now, and remains very popular with the Belgian public.”
In the food guides famous 20-point scoring system, Slagmolen came in with an outstanding 18. The best-scoring restaurants however, with 19.5 each, were – not surprisingly – Hof Van Cleve in Kruishoutem (Belgium’s only three-Michelin star restaurant) and Bon Bon in Brussels.
Other top scorers include Sea Grill and Comme chez Soi, both in Brussels and both with 18.5/20. Several restaurants matched Slagmolen’s 18, including Het Gebaar and The Jane, both in Antwerp, and Chambre Séparée in Ghent.
Gault&Millau also chooses a Young Chef of the Year in several regions, and this year in Flanders that’s Glenn Verhasselt of Sir Kwinten in Lennik, Flemish Brabant. Soma in Antwerp, meanwhile, makes the best desserts, while the most beautiful restaurant in Belgium is La Table de Maxime in Paliseul, Luxembourg province.
A complete list of honours can be found on the Gault&Millau website. The new guide, which rates some 1,300 restaurants in the two countries, can be purchased on the website or in local shops.
Photos, from top: Slagmolen chef Bert Meewis and host Karlijn Libbrecht ©courtesy Gault&Millau; Slagmolen in Oudsbergen ©courtesy Slagmolen