Back from a 3 weeks holiday in Ireland, we were very nicely surprised to find the same child-friendly atmosphere at the Grimbergen café.
For our first real ‘family vacation’, we travelled from Dingle to Dublin through beautiful Connemara and only met people smiling to our daughter. Irish people are famous for their hospitality, and they are particularly fond of children.
As we explored the island with Emma, we had lunch in pubs and restaurants with her almost every day (yes, nowadays you may go to the pub with a child – up to 6.00 pm…).
Considering her total lack of discretion (which is a nice euphemism, she just cant stay 1 minute quiet), it was quite a challenge at first, but the smiles of the waitresses and bartenders made us feel at ease and encouraged us to reiterate the experience.
And I must say that even if I ate cold most of the time or had to drink my Carlsberg bottoms up (I definitely didn’t fell in love with the poorly foaming Guinness), I enjoyed eating out just the 3 of us.
Of course I cannot imagine having to participate to a continuous conversation in this context, but I even managed to relax and ignore the bloody mess Emma was making on the table (just like all the waitresses did – but were they complaining about our uneducated piggy in the kitchen?).
Anyway, back to Belgium, we were very confident when opening the door of the Grimbergen Café last Saturday.
It all started fantastic : we were very warmly welcomed and directly got a babychair, Emma’s soup has been quickly served and all the staff was “Irish smiling” to Emma… who then decided to ruin it. Was the soup too hot, was she tired, or any of those reasons we seek to justify our child’s insufferable behaviour? I don’t know, but she got mad and kept shouting and crying.
I won’t go into details because I am afraid it wouldn’t encourage you to go to the Grimbergen café with your child, which actually is the meaning of this post – of course, we were mortified, but the waiters didn’t seem to bother and helped us relaxing once the storm was over.
The Grimbergen café is a typical Belgian Brasserie restaurant located close to the Place Sainte Catherine (where else?). They have a nice terrace, and the interior is cosy and felted (at least when Emma isn’t there).
I always go for the cheese and shrimp croquettes (with a Grimbergen, which is not a detail), but I hear their mussels as their steaks are very good too.
I would definitely recommend it for a quick lunch on a weekday, for an unexpensive dinner with friends before going out in the lively neigbourhood… or for a family lunch on Saturday!