Wine Tasting at Sobogusto, Luxembourg

On Wednesday night, myself and R. headed to Sobogusto for a wine tasting event organized by Bernard-Massard.

The concept is repeated once per month, every time with a different wine region. For a 20 euro fee, you get access to the full wine tasting and to a buffet of various food.

The event starts at 6 pm and last normally until 9 pm. Reservation is mandatory as they got only 100 places. This month was the turn of Cotes du Rhone.

I have been at Sobogusto, that is situated in Hollerich area, just next to P+R Bouillon, couple of years ago – I was not impressed by the food (it was fine, but nothing great), but I really liked the atmosphere and the place (trendy, chic, spacious), so I was really looking forward to come back.

We got there at 7ish and were accompanied to the Chalet upstairs and assigned to our table. We tasted 1 cremant, 1 white and about 6 red wines. The buffet had several charcuterie types, cheese, pizza and bread and grilled vegetables.


The evening was very pleasant.

What I liked about wine tasting at Sobogusto:

  • The event was very well-organized. You reserve, so you have your table, the buffet is huge and well assorted and two people were serving the wine, so no queuing involved at all. Each wine was also shortly presented by Bernard-Massard guys.
  • The atmosphere was relaxed, polished and sophisticated. We enjoyed from the first to the last-minute.
  • Service was great and wines lovely. You got a chance to try different kind of wines of different budgets and you can buy them at the end if you want.
  • 20 euro are definitely fair for what we drank and what we ate. The buffet included also bottles of water, so no hidden costs, very appreciated..

Things I liked a bit less:

  • When I booked at Sobogusto I supposed to be AT Sobogusto, not at the Chalet on the first floor. It was still fine, but I personally prefer the atmosphere on the ground floor.
  • Wine is given as said in tasting version, so you have really one sip of each and you have to come back for the next. Not for party goers or for getting drunk 🙂

To conclude, we spent a nice and alternative evening at Sobogusto for the wine tasting event. You get a chance to try several great bottles, have some cheese/charcuterie and enjoy a relaxed environment.

If you are interested in the event, next month it will be “Vin du fete“. The concept is really cool and I might come back in the future.

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La Maison Lefèvre, Esch-sur-Alzette: great expectations, fine result

On Sunday, inspired by the good weather and by a quiet – and sick – Saturday night, we travelled to Esch-sur-Alzette for a date lunch at La Maison Lefèvre.

I had great expectations toward La Maison Lefèvre, which made it recently on the Gault&Millau 2016 guide and I wanted to try it since long.

We had a side table facing the street and, after a cremant aperitif accompanied by some focaccia canapé, we received a Saint Jacques amouse-bouche. I went for a poached egg with  potatoes pancake and truffle while hubby had foie gras and then we continued with rack of doe for two. We had half bottle of red wine and two coffees for a total bill of 127 euro (2 cremant, half bottle of wine, two starters, two mains, two espresso, half water)..

How was our lunch at La Maison Lefèvre? Discover it after the pictures.


  
  

Things I liked about La Maison Lefèvre :

Food was nice and not plain: both my dishes had unusual combinations of tastes for usual recipes and I really like the effort in creating unique propositions and not having the common, boring brasserie meal. This was for me the very good point in favor of this restaurant – everything on the menu was new and appealing – and the main reason for coming back.

Fair quality – price: we had a lot of food in a nice environment for a reasonable price. They have also a tasting menu for 55 euro that looks very convenient. The wine list is various with several good choices for small prices – and great bottles with honest recharges.

– Amazing bread, wide vegetarian selection and private parking under “other good things”.

Things I liked a bit less about La Maison Lefèvre:

– They should have had a great photographer for the website as the place in reality it is a bit less suggestive. It might be because it was daylight, but I was not impressed by the settings as I was online.

– Attention to details very lacking: our table was just attached to a cupboard that was full of dust (see picture). The cheese trolley was in the middle of the restaurant, in a very busy place, without any coverage. My main course presentation was a disaster (joking I said hubby “my doe should have been killed by a car”). From a place like this and for its potential,  I would expected something different.

– I booked the table one week in advance but apparently I was not on the reservation list. The waitress who welcomed us kept us for a quite long time at the counter asking me if I was sure I booked, who I talked with, when did I do my reservation.. My husband saw I was a bit disappointed and he smiled back to don’t worry. And then the waitress herself looked and me and stated “yes – be calm please” in a very impolite manner. I don’t think it is the right attitude at all. You have a table for us, ok. You don’t have, we leave. Not really fancy keeping me in the middle of the room interviewing me to understand if I just pretend to have a reservation – I have a schedule of the places to visit that covers the next two weeks and I am not at Zuma, so no, I am not pretending.
Then, as hubby and I speak both decent French and fluent English, I don’t see the reason why she had to speak her bad Italian with us and treat us as kids, with very informal attitude, even later at the table. We might be not as old as the average of the restaurant, but I am not your sister. Just to say, other waiters were pretty fine and professional as it is supposed to be.

To sum up: maybe because I had seriously big expectation about La Maison Lefèvre, I was a bit deluded. Food combinations are great and prices very fair, but I think they should put a bit more effort in the care of details and on the service. Indeed, it think it is a lovely place for a family celebration.

Restaurant MAHO, Luxembourg: an amiable dinner in a lovely atmosphere

Some weeks ago I was celebrating four years with my husband, so, on Monday, as it was long time we didn’t have a dinner date, we decided to have a special night.
I have a list of the restaurants I am going to visit in the next month, but unfortunately no one of them was open so I decided to use one of the suggestions received during my interviews. One of the thing I personally love about my “Barefoot in Luxembourg meets people” series is that is giving me the opportunity to learn about new restaurants or the confidence to try something out of my comfort zone. So finally we booked at MAHO – that was mentioned as her favorite restaurant in Luxembourg by @fashion_lawyer.

I have been to the premises of MAHO several years ago, when it was still Les Jardins du President, and really like the settings. We were warmly welcomed at the entrance and accompanied to our table on the veranda. The atmosphere was very sophisticated and romantic, with very dim lights (even too dim – hence the bad quality pictures).
We were served water and started with a glass of champagne. We received a small platter of appetizer, followed by a fish terrine as amuse-bouche.
I had salmon fume as starter and beef filet with truffle as main, while hubby had canard terrine with foie gras as starter and entrecote as main.
My starter was fine in average: the salmon was orgasmic, a butter melting in my mouth, but the plat itself was a bit disjointed – I did not like very much the salad and the avocado wasabi sauce haven’t seen any wasabi but has a very strong taste of lemon.
My main course was classically good: the meat was outstanding, perfectly cooked. I loved the al dente green vegetables and the truffle pure’ was yummy – I would have eaten a bigger portion indeed. The only unfavorable point was the wine sauce on the meat – too sweetish for my taste.
My husband on the other side enjoyed very much his plat – he said that it was the best entrecote he had ever had in Luxembourg, and I know how picky he is normally  – only point he had was that the plat was super hot and the salad, for this reason, was really dried out, and should have been taken in a small pot.

Find the pictures of our dinner, followed by my general impressions as usual.

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Things I loved about MAHO:

Perfect service – present, discreet, smiling. We really felt pampered.
Excellent ingredients – raw materials were great and above all the meat was extremely enjoyable.
Cozy settings – great place for a dinner date and I cannot wait to come back during summer to enjoy the outside garden.
Smokers’ room – to avoid the cold temperature outside, a nice room with fireplace is available for smokers.

Things I loved a bit less:

Too noisy – there were couple of business dinner tables that enjoyed fairly much the booze and talked at very loud volume. Considering the size of the room and the fact tables are pretty close, a big bite of romance disappeared. What a pity.
– What about the WOW factor?  Our dinner was not cheap one. Two starters, two main courses, two glass of champagne and 2 glass of wines took us around 170 Euro. It was Monday night and I had to drive, so we did not feel having a bottle of wine, but in case we would, our final bill would have overpassed 200 euro.
If you follow my reviews, you see I am definitely fine spending this money for a special date, but I reserve this attention to a place that is not only good, but outstanding. While our dinner was good and the material uses were excellent, I don’t have that feeling of saying “wow, this dish is amazing”. It was fine, really fine, but not amazing.
Indeed, I have to say that my husband felt in love with his entrecote and therefore I will definitely come back to check some more exotic dish.

La Cantine @ Hotel Le Chatelet, a delightful, romantic dinner date

I had already a chance some times ago to eat at the Cantine of Chatelet Hotel, on a quiet side of Hollerich/Gare area, but I did not write a review as having been there only for lunch, I supposed it was not extremely indicative. I had some lovely fish and chip on that occasion and the service – even if, as said, was just a business lunch – was great.

I came back with hubby this week for our weekly date. We called for booking a short while before and we were proposed a table on the terrace.

The restaurant has in fact an open space on the street – for drinks -, a main dining room, a bar lounge and a backyard covered terrace, that is very pleasant during summer time.

I had a ham/melon starter and hubby a beef carpaccio, while for main we shared a “cote de boeuf“,  that was served with vegetables and fries.

Our dinner was just perfect – except for this Spanish guy calling all his f*ck*ng family on Facetime at pretty loud volume just next to our table for hours – nothing could have been better.

We had a great St.Emilion Gran Cru that was always served by the waiters, the starters were delicate and tasty, and the meat was indeed delicious – maybe next time I will go for the Chateubriand, instead, as this cut was just a bit too nervous, but only for my taste, hubby loved it.

The final coffee was accompanied by a yummy almond cake and, with the bill, we were offered two digestives – oh mon dieu, how much time had passed since a restaurant offered me some final drink? Well done and highly appreciated!

I have also to say that, together with the ambience and the food, one of the best thing of this place is the service. Talking with hubby I said: for me, tonight, this is exactly what I consider the real perfect service. Waiters were smiling, kind, affable, always there when you needed them but not bothering rest of the time.

I will definitely visit La Cantine more often and I highly recommend it for a couple or friends date. If you fancy good food and refined atmosphere, you would love this place!

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Dinner with view: Beim Siggy, Luxembourg

Often during this season, friends are asking me for a place for dining in town with a nice terrace. Honestly I cannot lie – even if, you know, I would sometimes prefer to keep my best places secret to avoid them becoming overcrowded. Then I usually suggest them at first “Beim Siggy”, a traditional brasserie located halfway between city center and Clausen, that has a wonderful terrace and one of the most amazing views in Luxembourg.

I have been there more than once last year during sunny evenings and I visited it recently with friends. The menu, as said, is very conservative, but portions are great, prices extremely fair and the quality is above the average.

I love the tartare – I had the salmon one and the beef one last time – but also Luxembourgish dishes are pretty yummy – hubby is a fan. List of wines – mainly French and Luxembourgish – is proportionate and has some great names at legitimate prices.

Find some pictures of the night – definitely a place highly recommended for me, above all if you have someone visiting to impress or if you want to arrange a romantic dinner without splurging:

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Easter Week end At Le Clervaux, Boutique & Design Hotel, Clervaux, Luxembourg

Finally this year we decided to leave Luxembourg for Easter break.

Considering the bad weather forecast and the fact we did not want to spend all day travelling, we booked at Le Clervaux, a hotel boutique located in Clervaux, in the north of Luxembourg.

We took our train on Sunday morning – actually bus plus train, as there were some works on the road – and we got to Clervaux in around one hour and a half.

The village is lovely and the hotel is about ten minutes walking from the station.

Things we loved about our stay

– Our suite was huge. TV in the bathroom, shower and bath, king size bed, Nespresso machine, minibar, amazing wardrobe. Nothing was really missing, it was the perfect room.
– The breakfast the morning after was also outstanding – we had even champagne.
– We booked our stay because of the wellness center in the hotel and we had mostly great time. The “sauna world” has sauna, salt grotto, steam bath, relaxation area and much more. Clean and relaxing. We had also a “couple massage” for 30 minutes that was super.
– The hotel has two restaurants – a gastronomic Italian one (Da Lonati) and a steakhouse/pizzeria (Rhino). We tried the steakhouse, had some shared charcuterie as starter and cote a l’os and steak for main (#foodporn pictures are following the post). Delicious. I would not exclude to visit it again even if a bit far from the city, as it was one of the best meat I had in my life – to remind: yummy truffle mayonnaise and extremely kind service.
– There was also an elegant bar – Cabana Lounge -, that was very animated, where we get drunk after dinner – to remove all the wellness hours’ benefits 😛

The only thing we did not like very much:

– The pool area was shared with the next door hotel and was full of kids. I honestly prefer hotels without kids but I am pretty sympathetic if they are well-behaving. In this case, they were just diving in the pool, making a lot of noises and using the Jacuzzi for their games. I would say this was not the situation for kids. If you book a boutique hotel with only suites, you won’t expect to share common area with another hotel for families. We ended up not using the pool as it was really messy.

On Monday morning there was a market just next to the Castle and we spent some hours around – notwithstanding the cold.

In conclusion, it was a lovely break and if you would like to have some relax without travelling too much, it is definitely recommended – maybe off-peak season in order to avoid confusion.

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House 17 Dinner & The Yacht Week Launch Party

I had the perfect Saturday: early clock, work-out, some shopping (got some sky-high heels from Nando Muzi that I cannot stop contemplating 😛 ), hairdresser appointment.

Saturday night was also great: we got the invitation for the Yacht Week Launch Party. The party took place at House 17 and, considering it was one of the last week-end the club was open for non-members, we decided to book a table at the restaurant to have a final try before requesting the membership.

Our reservation was at 9.00 pm but our guests were a bit late, so we decided to start with couple of drinks.

I had the salmon starter and the sole as main course, Patricia same starter than me and half-cooked tuna fish with kiwi sauce, her husband poached egg with ham and Angus beef, hubby egg as well with beef steak. The dishes were anticipated by a small welcome from the chef.
We girls went for a bottle of Chablis while lads stayed with red and we concluded with coffee before going up for the party.

Curious about after dinner impressions? Scroll down after the pictures.  photo 82089eaa-40cc-47d2-b3d4-8a667c4aecaf_zpskzlqlhfc.jpg  photo e1d99723-7cbb-42be-865a-02f5353e00ba_zpswd7pvb4c.jpg  photo e6f9d7f3-ce66-4618-8692-ca36e0e6e71c_zpsdbjshj7h.jpg  photo d4a4ceed-368a-494f-be00-9c18b5806d2b_zpsfebjerer.jpg  photo b6508f48-2088-49fe-9afb-7036e4a895cb_zps5igldotj.jpg  photo 44cc0ec9-949b-47e3-b7ac-3f478bc12b53_zpsidmifsb2.jpg photo 858ac8dc-bf26-4c41-99f2-27d5e1ef80d2_zpsrtyavocj.jpg Things I loved about the restaurant:

– The atmosphere is just perfect. I think this one of the first place in Luxembourg where I found a kind of ambient that perfectly suits a Saturday night fresh dinner. You know what I mean? Something that you would find in a big city abroad, not too old-fashioned like most of the fancy restaurants in Luxembourg, formal but not trapped in a plaster cast. Relaxed lights, great table settings, sweet background music, correct distance between tables. Just lovely.
– Dishes were extremely good. The combination of my salmon starter was great – I even appreciated the beetroot jelly – even if I would have preferred the salmon sliced a bit thinner. The sole was also delicious. Perfect cooking, portions were really fine as, after two dishes, I was feeling really full for taking a dessert.
– Cocktails are to die for. Hubby had a mojito – and he is not normally a fan – and said it was great.

Thing I loved a little bit less about the restaurant:

– I asked for an aperitif suggestion and I was told: wine, champagne, usual cocktails… As cocktails are such great here, I would have expected they had a house cocktail to suggest. I stayed with my usual Hendricks.
– Amuse-bouche was yummy – but was prepared with meat. As two of us at the table ordered only fish for the entire dinner, it would have been great to differentiate also the welcome.
– I ordered oysters as initial starter – as during the aperitif I was seeing these huge dishes passing by and I was dreaming of them – and, after a while, I was told they were over. Same thing for the wine choice, we ordered a Saint-Aubin as white one and the waiter came back saying they don’t have it anymore. Sad. Better advise the client before he/she is going for the wrong choice and would be deluded.
– As general feeling, service was a bit inattentive: we had to ask for the bread, my first single glass of wine arrived kind of 5 minutes later of those of others at the table, before the coffee nobody was monitoring the room so I had to get up to ask for the bill as we wanted to move up soon.
It was nothing too bad honestly – our dinner was great and we will definitely come back soon, but as the bill is not inexpensive maybe some small improvements would be highly appreciated.

As said, after the dinner we moved to the third floor bar for the Yacht Week party. It was crowded, great atmosphere as well, we met friends and we had a blast. It was long time we were not spending such great Saturday evening – and for sure it was clear when we woke up hangover on Sunday morning 🙂  photo 4d647b54-50fb-4bd9-8480-78a3c3ce6af3_zpsasqkmsww.jpg