Nyx Food & Wine Experience, Belval, Luxembourg

The second restaurant I have tried for RestoDays after my long time favorite L’Avenue was Nyx, Food & Wine Experience, in Belval.

Nyx has a quite nice and active Instagram feed, so I decided it was the time to move a bit out of the city and discover something new.

Nyx is located 5 minutes walking from Belval train station, on the edge of a residential complex, so with a bright and open view and a spacious terrace during warmer times.

We entered through a pastry shop (which felt a bit odd honestly for such elegant place) and then were welcomed at the reception of the restaurant.

I loved the extremely tall ceilings and the industrial, minimalistic decorations.

The Restodays menu had 2 options for every course, so we decided to take one each to try a bit of everything. We ordered an apero ahead the meal. I had margarita, which was light and pleasant – probably I wouldn’t be so happy to have the same cocktail on a night out, but for lunch it was great.

With the lunch we also had a bottle of Greek white wine, which was mineral and light, very enjoyable. The wine list is 90% about Greek wines, with very few French and Italian bottles. Prices per bottle are fair, starting 25 euro and mostly around 50 Eur, with some isolated peaks at 100 Eur.

Regarding the food: starters were gyoza with feta and lobster and mushrooms tartare with parmesan cheese and truffle.

Gyoza were amazing: well balanced, both in taste and consistency, perfumed, tasty. Mushrooms tartare was good, slightly too much on the acid side and totally missing the truffle promised, still very refreshing and pleasant to eat.

Mains were salmon with strawberry sauce and cheese balls and chicken cooked with red wine and Greek pasta. The structure of the two dishes was very much on the sweet side – both were probably dishes I would have never ordered a la carte. My salmon anyway was greatly executed, crispy outside and tender inside, and the Roquefort balls were Oh-my-gosh amazing.

Also my dessert was amazing: a sort of Karidopita served with chocolate and ice cream. It was probably, together with the gyoza, the best course of the lunch.

Finally we had good time at Nyx: the fixed menu is always a bit of a lottery, above all when you go to try a brand new place, still we were satisfied. I would reserve myself to try this restaurant a la carte to complete my opinion.

Here you have the pictures of our lunch followed by my final impressions.

What I liked about Nyx Food & Wine Experience:

I love the place and its decor: the space is wide and bright, with enourmous windows and great view. It must be amazing also during summer times outside.

Service was attentive and lovely: my napkins was changed when I went to the restroom, bread basket refilled during the dinner, we were given our time to go through the menu without rush.

– As said, fixed menu is a bit of a lottery and it is a choice I rarely love out of RestoDays. I like very much spicy and strong tastes, so both main were not much appealing for me. Still salmon was good and the two highlights of the menu were definitely the gyoza and the walnut cake, which were both delightful.

What I liked a bit less about Nyx Food & Wine Experience:

– As said I would like to come back to this place and eat a la carte to have my final opinion. For RestoDays it was quite a good experience, still it was not cheap: 2 apero, 1 bottle of wine (38 Eur, so in the cheap side), 2 RestoDays Menu, 2 small bottles of water, 1 coffee we spent 125 Eur. It was fine, but I feel if you eat a la carte the bill will add up quickly, therefore it must definitely be worth it.

– The one small stuff which I liked a bit less – considering how nice is the place and how lovely and upscale was the service – is that you need to go to pay at the counter. I personally find really tacky, above all if you are on a date or with someone who will not be too obvious to split.

To sum up: I liked Nyx, I had a positive first experience: location and service are definitely promoted. I would like to eat a la carte to have a proper idea about the menu, still I think the place has a potential – but not on a tight budget.

The best secret terrace, La Grappe D’Or, Luxembourg City

I waited so much to publish this post that it is almost a throw-back, but I got some serious ethic dilemmas regarding if to share one of my favorite summer places. Read more below…

On the first real day of spring, I could not miss the opportunity to book at my favorite terrace in town. Actually, I have to say, this is one of the times writing a review was really difficult for me and took ages to publish – I was trying to force myself doing it but I actually did’t want to do it!!! The reason is because this restaurant is my very “secret summer place” and it is not too much famous… I read on Facebook forums a lot of questions and articles about the “best terrace” in Luxembourg and I have never mentioned it – because I am too afraid that, if it became popular, I will have to book too much in advance – not to mention I don’t really like crowded places..

Anyway – I made an exception for my partner in crime and we headed to La Grappe D’Or, in Dommeldange, for a special celebration – my new job, the real one 😛

As said, the restaurant is located off the beaten tracks of the usual restaurants in Luxembourg, hidden in a residential area up the hill in Dommeldange. The “winter” indoor part is not fancy at all (at least, not for me..), just too similar to several Portuguese old fashion restaurants you might find in town. Indeed the very reason for coming here is the amazing terrace, that offers you a spectacular view of the sunset over Luxembourg.

We arrived there around 8.30ish, just in time to enjoy it, and start our dinner with a glass of cava. The menu is Portuguese, offers both meat and fish – and some veggie choices as well – but personally once here I always ended up on fish.

I had a tuna carpaccio with truffle while M. went for a codfish and shrimps mixed starter. To follow, I had marinated codfish with shrimps while he went for “gambas flambe'”. We dined drinking one of my favorite Portuguese wines, Esporao Reserva, and concluded with a glass – or maybe two, as usual – of Portuguese grappa.

Enjoy the pictures of our dinner – while imagining already the special person you want to take there ❤ – followed by my general impressions of La Grappe D’Or.

 

What I loved about La Grappe D’Or:

  • Ca va sans dire, the view is the main reason to visit La Grappe D’Or. Be sure to reserve a table like ours, on the balcony – those internally have a less incredible view -. This is definitely one of the most romantic view you can find in Luxembourg city for me.
  • The service is very smart and friendly – that South-European style all smile and laugh and small jokes.
  • Even if you allow yourself to indulge, the total bill will never be scary. We had aperitif, two starters, two mains, one of the best wines on the card, coffee, digestif and the total bill read slightly more than 100 euro in total. Exceptionally fair.

 

What I liked a bit less about La Grappe D’Or:

  • Let’s be honest: would I come here to eat if the restaurant had not this incredible view? No, I won’t. But while the food is not exceptional – average quality, informal presentation, pretty strong tastes tending to cover the main ingredients (like the oil on my carpaccio or the sauce on the codfish) at the same time it is not that bad. Fair. Portions are reasonable, tastes leave a good memories on your palate and the choice is quite good. At the end the combination between an amazing view, a decent menu and quite cheap prices (in terms of Luxembourg standards) is a win win.

 

In conclusion: if you want to have a romantic date in Luxembourg with a reasonable budget and your other half does not have a Michelin star background, there is no better place of the lovely La Grappe D’Or, the best view in Luxembourg. I regret already sharing it with you – but now it is too late 😛

After-Work at L’Avenue, Kirchberg

Couple of weeks ago, on a Wednesday night, we had a business meeting to plan and as we were already around Kirchberg area we decided to try for the first time L’Avenue, the modern new bar – restaurant in Arendt building, near Auchan.

The design of the venue is stunning: modern, clean, bright, slightly posh but exceptionally client-friendly. Entering, you have in front a luminous and striking bar counter – reminding me of some “Made in Chelsea” favorite drinking places -. On the left, the bar area, on the right the restaurant tables.

When we arrived, the bar area was already totally packed – we requested to the waiter a table for three people, but he was unable to find one, so we moved to the terrace. Indeed the terrace is one of the bonus point of the location but unfortunately on that specific night the weather was not compatible with a long stay. Our waiter was really nice: we started ordering two glasses of red wine – a nice Italian Primitivo – while waiting for our guest  and when our waiter saw I was actually shivering, he called us inside after having found a table.

Even if the bar area was packed, the tables allocation inside is really comfortable: you don’t get the impression to be suffocated by other people standing, like it happens in similar places and still have a good view – isn’t people watching one of the favorite hobbies in Luxembourg?

With the second round of drinks, we ordered as well some tapas: the kitchen was about to close, but we were still able to have some vegetable tempura with their dip. The presentation was very accurate, the portion quite fair for the price and the taste surprisingly good.

Some pictures of our evening followed by my general impressions – and for more pictures of the venue just check out L’Avenue FB page.


What I liked about L’Avenue:

  • The design of the location is “wow”. I really love the place and I cannot wait to be on the terrace during the warm season. It is the kind of place you might like to go straight from the office or after a business meeting like we did.
  • The service is extremely friendly: even if the place was packed and the waiter serving the bar area only one, we never felt we were forgotten and we got everything we needed on time and with a smile. Well done!
  • The drinks list is wide, including appealing cocktails and great gin selection. Tapas are served after-work and have several choices – including veggie – at a small price. Perfect if you are having dinner afterwards – and cannot wait to try the dining area in the next future.

What I liked a bit less about L’Avenue:

  • We had a super pleasant night so nothing to complain about, definitely. Maybe it would have been nice, even if you don’t order tapas, to have some chips or peanuts to snack while having your drink, but as usual this is one of the silly points of mine – I have an addictions for chips, I admit.
  • Not a real downside, indeed, but only a suggestion if you plan to visit the bar. Even if prices are very fair, it is a classy place, you cannot deny it, and being in the financial district, the customer base is mainly composed by lawyers and bankers. If you have gym-wear and sneakers on after having shopped at Auchan, it might not be the place for you. Come with high heels ladies 🙂

In conclusion: L’Avenue bar is the perfect for a fashionable drink in Kirchberg, with friends, colleagues or business partners. The lovely terrace and the stunning interior design, together with the attentive service, are making this place one of our favorite for after-working in town. 

A new Italian wine bar in town: 14 Degrés and more, Luxembourg city

Touching down in Luxembourg just for one night, I organized an after-work drink – that soon became a big night out  – with my girlfriends. Fancying something informal but refined and very deluded by the last place of this kind we tried recently, we booked a table at 14 Degrés and more, a new eatery and wine bar that has recently opened in the city centre, just in front of Le Royal Hotel.

The concept of the place is really easy going: they serve a daily menu for lunch, they have Italian products to purchase or you can simply sit down, have a glass of wine and some nibbles.

The place is tiny inside, but well decorated and impressive in the details. The outdoor table are overlooking a busy boulevard Royal, but after a while you really don’t care. The terrace is wide and is perfect if you want just to relax.

We got there around 6 pm and welcome by the owner. Started with a glass of bubbles while waiting for the squad to be completed and went then for a bottle of Fiano followed by a Primitivo one.

We were offered some snacks – vegerables, garlic crème cheese and olives – and we then ordered a mixed platter of charcuterie and cheese. With the red bottle we had as well some more cheese.

Some quick pictures followed by my usual impression.

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What I liked about 14 Degrés and more:

  • Amazing level of service: even if the place is very informal, the owner was checking on us to see if everything was going fine and was available to suggest us wines and give indications about the food.
  • Food and wine are simple but good, wines served at the right temperature and platters prepared with care.
  • The location is very relaxing and perfect for end of summer gatherings.

What I liked a bit less about 14 Degrés and more:

  • The space inside is not ready for the cold Luxembourg winter and will not yet be able to welcome many people. Anyway we talked with the owner and he confirmed he has already plans for the forthcoming months, including a covered terrace.

In conclusion: 14 Degrés and more offers Italian products for lunch and after-work. For me, it was the perfect place to share a bottle (or more!) of wine with my friends and I really looking forward to come back to try other dishes.

 

Family Sunday lunch at Le Sud, Luxembourg city

Thanks to the Monday off for public holiday, my parents, my sister and my brother-in-law came to visit us for a short break. Except for the weather, that has been truly cold and grey, they have been some funny and intense days.

As soon as my parents confirmed their visit, I booked our Sunday lunch at my favourite place in the City, Le Sud in Clausen. If you are following my blog, you know I am not very easy in “the best” judgement. I tend to be very prudent – in one sense or in the other. Anyway – if people ask me what is my preferred place in the city, among those I have tried, I would definitely say Le Sud – for a combination of unique factors. I love their sophisticated French cuisine – nothing too extravagant, but these classic numbers with a unique style. I love their service – if you are a regular or a new comers you are always welcome with a smile. I love the settings of the restaurant – again, this French style combined with the featuring of the old beer factory in Clausen. Bonus point: the terrace and the bar upstairs, where you can have your aperitif or after-work drinks to launch or conclude your night.

Last Sunday, we got to the restaurant around 12.30 and were welcomed at the wardrobe on the ground floor. We moved upstairs and we were assigned a lovely table near the windows – from one of them you can clearly see the Cathedral top. A copy of the menu, without the prices as for my request, was placed on the table. On Sunday you have a fixed menu option, with one amuse-bouche, one starter, a choice between two mains, cheese selection and dessert.

We had a pleasant glass of cremant to start, followed by a creamy egg with truffle bread and then by a salmon tartare. As main I went for the tuna fish – while most of my family decided for the lamb -, cheese trolley and a delicious chocolate macaron with pear sorbet. We accompanied the lunch with a bottle of Saint-Aubin, the boys had as well a glass of red with the meat, and finally another glass of red with the cheese. We went upstairs for our coffee that was served with a lovely selection of sweets.

Scroll after the picture for my impressions.




Things I loved about Le Sud:

  • This was my first time at Le Sud for lunch and I was not deluded. The ambience is relaxed but animated and you don’t feel the urge to dress up like in the evening. On the other side, the service and the kitchen are at the same level: outstanding.
  • Food is just perfect to me: you must like the tasty atmosphere of French cuisine, truffle, cheese… If you are looking for a light hipster option, Le Sud is not for your. It is very baroque in all its details and this is one of the reasons because I love it.
  • We have been guided through our lunch menu in the details. My sister asked for having her tuna fish well-done as she doesn’t like it raw and she has been proposed an alternative. We were given perfect timing in-betweens dishes and wines suggestions have been great.
  • The menu itself is a “simple” 54 euro for Sunday lunch – considering we have spent the same amount in lower level packed touristic places in the city centre where only regulars are treated well and for the same price you get one starter and one overcooked main. Definitely to me a perfect combination quality price.

Things I did not like about Le Sud:

  • I definitely don’t like I cannot afford going there each and every Sunday and each and every week end, as I would love to 🙂 Seriously, it is really hard for me to find a negative point – there are no. I would like people to visit their terrace bar more – you are not obliged to stay for the meal and the price is not different from other poshy bars in the city centre – plus a better service. It would be nice to see it a bit more crowded.

To conclude: while for dinner I reserve Le Sud for a date night or a special celebration, on Sunday lunch it is perfect for family gathering and sophisticated friends’ meal. Quality is exceptional, service amazing and you are in one of the most amazing restaurant rooms in the city centre. Totally worth the price.