Tag Archives: Wines

Dinner at The Michelin Starred L’And Restaurant

L'And Restaurant-Miguel Laffan-Portugal-Alentejo-1C-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

The L’And Restaurant Successful Mix of Design, Food and Wine

The restaurant of the L’And Vineyards in Alentejo (Portugal) is a somewhat magical place “Outstanding-Nature-Resort!” I had the chance to dine with a friend and meet the Michelin starred Chef Miguel Laffan there.

As I didn’t know what to choose, I asked the chef to help me. He recommended me to take the Tasting menu with 6 dishes (yes 6 as the Number 6 in The Prisoner)! Too much for me!

The Chef tries to convince me: the portions are small. Okay let’s try the tasting menu, but only with some Pedras Salgadas, one of my favorite sparkling waters. To be honest, I like to taste wines only during a visit to a vineyard, more out of curiosity than greed.

L'And Restaurant-Miguel Laffan-Portugal-Alentejo-2-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Bon appetit!

Gourmet or not: you can’t remain indifferent to this creative cuisine that subtly combines exotic flavors and Portuguese tradition. Here in order, the photo montage (above): 1. The appetizers with the excellent Portuguese regional products: olive oil, Pata Negra, pepper salad and cheese.

2. The divine “Portugaise bouillabaisse with pan fried crayfish and oyster “croquette.” I don’t like oysters, but I found the oyster croquette delicious ! Luckily I never really look the menu! LOL!

3. “Tuna fish tataki in a mille feuilles with a red onion compote and mango chutney, radish, coriander and bergamot salad.” Should I add something? Ah yes the presentation! So important for a photographer. The food is as beautiful to see as delicious to eat.

4. “Red mullet and squid stew “açorda” with a seaweed and fennel dashi.” Awesome if you enjoy fish!

L'And Restaurant-Miguel Laffan-Portugal-Alentejo-3-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

I ask the Chef Miguel Laffan what is his favorite ingredient:

He answers without hesitation: “a good company” (pictured below). And it is in good company I continue this tasting … that never ends, lol! I confess: as exceptional as are the dishes I’m not be able to eat more after the fourth dish!

On the second photo-montage (above): 1. The incredibly soft “roasted tenderloin pig from Alentejo slowly, cauliflower gratin with asparagus, peas and black pudding sausage. ” 4. The wines, including those of The And Vineyards. 

The desserts: 2. “White and black chocolate tiramisu with mascarpone and pistachio cream, cherries in kirsch syrup and coffee ice cream” and 3. “Sweet carrot duet over pistachio crumble with saffron and fresh ginger foam and honey ice cream.” I’m not really a dessert person, I’m more salty than sweet, but the colorful lively presentation is an invitation to taste.

L'And Restaurant-Miguel Laffan-Portugal-Alentejo-4B-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014L'And Restaurant-Miguel Laffan-Portugal-Alentejo-6-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Photos : Mademoiselle Le K – copyright 2014, tous droits réservés.  


L’And Vineyards

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Many thanks to the Chef Miguel Laffan and his team for this fantastic dining experience! And to the L’And Vinyards to invite my friend and I. Yes, as always these are my opinions. 

Brussels, Belgium: Dinner at Chez Montaigne

Chez Montaigne-Brussels-Belgium-Restaurant-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Foodies, you’ll enjoy this restaurant!

I recently discovered with my dear mum, the excellent restaurant Chez Montaigne, Place Brugmann 27. 

My family and friends say I’m picky about food, but I don’t think so. I prefer the quality of products than some extravagant associations and sauces that kill the essence of the taste of each ingredient … 

I like to be a bit surprised, but not too much! In other words, it’s quite challenging for the chef (LOL)! We sit inside because it’s raining on the terrace (pictures 1 & 5). 

The decor is white and minimalist, a painting by Jean-Luc Moerman roughly recalls the French philosopher Montaigne. The light softens gradually as the evening progresses. We arrived early and will leave among the last (a good sign).

Chez Montaigne-Brussels-Belgium-Restaurant-1-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014Chez Montaigne-Brussels-Belgium-Restaurant-2-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Great first meals  

My mother chooses a salad of ​​beets sliced very thin with chew, a half fig and hazelnut. Really delicious (picture above)! 

As always, I don’t like to experiment and I choose a more conventional dish with thin avocado slices, parsley and lobster, perfectly seasoned (picture 2). Lovely presentation: many colors in the plate! And impeccable service both professional and friendly!

Chez Montaigne-Brussels-Belgium-Restaurant-3-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Then we order fish

served with lentils, asparagus and tomatoes. The cooking is perfect and  the dish is simple and tasty as I like. The large plates are not roborative.

After a long hesitation, we share a delicious homemade ice cream with vanilla (picture below).

Chez Montaigne-Brussels-Belgium-Restaurant-4-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014Chez Montaigne-Brussels-Belgium-Restaurant-6-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Photos : Mademoiselle Le K – copyright 2014, tous droits réservés.


Chez Montaigne, Place Brugmann 27, Phone +32 (0)2 345 65 23

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We were invited by the restaurant Chez Montaigne and these are my opinions. Thanks to the team of Chez Montaigne.

Vila Vita Parc, Portugal: Restaurants & Wine Cellar

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-2A-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Breakfast overlooking the ocean 

at the Atlântico restaurant: exhilarating (picture 1)! Around 10 am, the sun is already pretty strong and the day before we were afraid it would rain! The green garden bordering the coast, draws perfectly on the ocean blue.

The view is stunning: picture 2, taken at the Ocean restaurant, the ocean view is quite similar to the terrace of the Atlântico! Every day we choose a new table at breakfast with a different view of the ocean.

The buffet of the Atlântico restaurant is varied: excellent fresh fruits bursting with sunshine, with a friendly discreet service. Photos 2, 3 and 4: Ocean, the famous gourmet restaurant with two Michelin stars! Photo 2: Empty wine decanters, like in an alchemist’s lair … Photo 3: A giant Fabergé egg in malachite!

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-5-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

The best fish in the world

I dreamed of a great fish to change (LOL!). We dine “casual chic” in Adega, the restaurant of Portuguese specialties. Discovering my huge dish, I am impressed by the size of the fish (picture above and on the last picture of this article : photo 1, the terrasse of Adega)! 

I learned that chefs of gourmet restaurants in London and New York charter aircraft with fish caught in the area the same day. This year, the fish of the Algarve have received the title of best fish in the world.

I’m not a foodie, but I can appreciate some great ingredients: my fish is excellent! As a starter, I chose delicious shrimps! A kind of proteins orgy : ) 

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-6-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Do you know the Portuguese Pétrus?

No, this is not a Madeira wine, but a grand cru of Douro, North of Portugal: the Barca Velha (picture above).

At seven meters under ground (the adventure begins!), we meet the sommelier José Figueirinha for a private tour of the Vila Vita Parc wine cellar. Exceptional cellar in Portugal, with an average of 11,000 bottles (pictures below 2 & 3).

Many great Portuguese and French wines (including Château Latour), but also Italian, Spanish or South African wines … And a room especially dedicated to Porto Vintage.

Vila Vita Parc-Restaurants-Cellar Cave de Vinhos-10-Photo Mademoiselle Le K-copyright 2014

Photos : Mademoiselle Le K – copyright 2014, tous droits réservés


www.vilavitaparc.com, the restaurants : Atlântico, OceanAdega & the Wine cellar, Cave de Vinhos 

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My friend and I were hosted by the Vila Vita Parc. As always these are my opinions! Many thanks to the Vila Vita Parc team.