“This is not a country,” Magritte might have said. A state of mind fashioned by the wind from the North Sea, sprinkled with Trappists and nourished each day by the self-deprecation of a people capable of organising Chip Week and the most specialised international exhibitions with the same degree of commitment. That’s Belgium.
A creative breeding ground which saw the growth of Art Nouveau, major trends in fashion, early Flemish painting, but also Brel, Stromae and others, Belgium packs a great variety of landscapes into its flat “pint-sized” country. From the rolling forests of the Ardennes and Luxembourg to the beaches and yellow dunes of the north, the country mixes the legendary romanticism of Bruges and its canals with Liège’s industrial revival and avant-garde as well as the cultural dynamism of Mons, Ghent and Antwerp. Capital of Europe and of the country, Brussels captivates us by its warmth and its charm in many different ways. In this land which unites all cultures, everything displays a zest for life; the hearts of lovers of architecture, comic books, modern art or gastronomy leap at its showpieces or its hidden delights. Among the temptations in your glass is gueuze, just one among the traditional strong beers and IPAs from creative microbreweries. As for those on your plate, chefs are reclaiming national classics, from “waterzooï” to “filet américain”, breathing into them all the modernity of a nation on the quest for excellence and retaining an essential ingredient from national tradition which you will certainly take pleasure in experiencing: conviviality.Read more