Suppose you would ask someone who knows me quite well ‘which drink I like the most’
They would answer without hesitation
a glass of cava/prosecco/sparkling wine
And yes, they are right.
As you may know already, my home base is Ghent (Belgium), a beautiful city in the East of Flanders. Some call it Belgium’s best kept secret and I agree. Despite the fact that there are a bunch of places where you can savor a glass of bubbles, some of them are quite crowded and/or overrated.
So where to go?
I. The Cobbler
Do you like to sip a glass of sparkling wine while enjoying a beautiful interior and the towers of Ghent? There is only one address: the Cobbler, a trendy bar situated at the heart of Ghent (on the ‘Graslei’, nearby the shopping area (Veldstraat, Korenmarkt, Lange Munt)). Apart form the fact that The Cobbler is actually a hotel bar, it’s famous for its cocktails and of course: they putted an outstanding sparkling wine on their ‘apero‘ menu.
Need to go to the bathroom? Mingle yourself amongst pink flamingo’s in bathroom heaven and refresh yourself with Aesop handsoap and creme.
Hungry? Try the Burrata from Cuoro di Puglia (the original Italian cheese factory in the city centre of Ghent)!
My all time favorite. The name of the wine bar refers to the name of the owner (Ona Rombaut). She is a hard working Lady (with capital L) who has spent a lot of time studying the art of being a ‘sommelier’ at the Université du Vin (ummm YES there is a university where you can study wine). On her side, there is Arne (husband to be) who is also passionate about wine and has recently been studying the art of (enjoying) wine too. This power couple offers a menu that is quite dynamic, since it changes quite often. Nonetheless, the rosé prosecco has been on the wine menu for quite some time (which I find substantiated): try it!
Note to self: Ona is also ‘boyfriend friendly‘ since the couple offers an extensive list of red and white wines (+ some local appetizers: try the tapenade selection from Small and Tall).
Ona is situated at my favorite neighbourhood (which I used to live in (and still reminiscing about)) the ‘Nederkouter‘.
III. De Kantien
In need of some sunshine? In need of seeing a beautiful part of Ghent that only locals know? Do you want to act like a real Gentian and say ‘gaan we een terrasje doen?’ (literally: ‘are we doing a terrace?’ OR – for normal human beings – ‘do you guys want to accompany me and enjoy an aperitif on a terrace while enjoying the sun?’):
Enjoy a glass of cava at the end of the ‘Watersportbaan’ at the Kantien. The Kantien is (partially) the cafeteria of one of the rowing clubs of Ghent but it has been upgraded to a one of my favorite bars in recent years. They own a really nice terrace that offers you an amazing view nearby the water front.
I like to head there after work or after a 5 km (or 3 miles) run around the ‘Watersportbaan’. So, if you are a running girl, like me: this is the perfect moment to combine sports and pleasure!
On Fridays they offer free tapas ‘between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. (not kidding) and grilled chicken + fries (make a reservation). On weekdays they present a finger-licking lunch and tapas-for-dinner menu.