When talking about Belgium’s gastronomy, we often limit ourselves to fries, chocolate and beer. Waffles are mentioned every now and then, yet that’s is. It’s like we Belgians eat nothing else. And even though that wouldn’t be such a terrible diet – taste wise, that is – we do indeed have other specialties too. Believe it or not. And whoever’s been to Belgium before, has probably heard about shrimp croquettes. Maybe you’ve even had the chance to taste them. And well, that dish is quite popular in Belgium, particularly in Flanders.
So popular that every year, a shrimp croquettes championship is being organized in Brussels. During the last two editions of that festival, it was Cédric Mosbeux, chef at Brussels restaurant Fernand Obb, who got to take home the first prize so if you’re in the capital, don’t hesitate to go and taste them! However, that’s not what we’ll be talking about today. After the success of the Brussels contest, the Belgian coast decided to organize their own version and to decide which restaurant is serving the best shrimp croquettes to its customers.
Shrimp of champions
When it came to the judgment of the croquettes, there were two different juries. On the one hand, there was a jury made up of professionals and directed by Gault&Millau. On the other hand, the public too got to say their part. And after all the tasting and the judging, there was one clear winner: Brassi, a restaurant located in Ostend, more particularly in the local casino. The croquettes at Brassi were judged to be the most artisanal ones of the contest and the shrimp used are not only coming from Ostend but they even get peeled by hand. “It’s not just the taste of the garnish yet also its crustiness; that’s where the chef’s recipe really stands out from the crowd”, Gault&Millau’s jury defended their choice. Of course, there was also space for a few runner-ups, in case you can’t make it to Brassi. These were the four best contenders of the shrimp croquette contest. If you prefer the public’s opinion to the one of the experts, you may want to go to Eetkaffee Poseidon instead of Brassi, which was chosen as the public’s winner.