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Mussels and Fries at Frites, Central

It’s not often that I go back to a restaurant two nights in a row! Actually, I don’t think I have ever done that… EVER. I was talking to a friend, D, one evening, and as he was still at work and I was home alone (Hubby was out drinking with his work mates!) I thought I would catch up to see if he was free for dinner. He was craving fries… good fries, and well I just wanted to eat! So he suggested this place Frites, in Central, a Belgian beer café style restaurant. Apparently, it is the only authentic Belgian Bar that serves no less than 5 Belgian beers on tap and with over 25 bottled beers. Their signature dish – mussels served with frites and mayonnaise!

I love the atmosphere of this restaurant, it’s very casual and relaxed but stylish vibe. I love the long wooden table, the bar, and the wine rack embedded in the walls.

Now the food (sorry pics are a little dark!), we both ordered mussels – I ordered ½ kilo Provencale which was steamed tomato, onions and herbs, served with a side of frites and mayo and a slice of dark rye bread. The mussels were cooked to perfection and the sauce was delicious. The frites were hot, crunchy and soft on the inside, dipped in mayo – they were delightful.

D ordered the ½ kilo of frites house mussels, which was served with steamed diced tomato, onion, light cream and fresh chives. It was very similar to mine, tomato flavoured but a lot creamier. For someone who doesn’t like seafood, he demolished it! He couldn’t really explain why he loved mussels so much but won’t eat fish, lobster, crab or the like… weird indeed!

It was great catching up with D, he is just one of those funny, well knowledge, well traveled guy with never ending stories. There is never a dull moment when you catch up with D!

I was telling Hubby about this place the next day and believe you not, he said ‘let’s go there tonight’ – I was like really? So on Saturday evening, we went to Frites again. Thankfully no one recognised me from the previous night.

Hubby also loved this place – the high ceiling, the beer bottles on top of the exit door, it was all very cool and shick! Saturday was not as busy as Friday night, I made sure I made a reservation,a late dinner at 8.45pm and the place was still buzzing, people eating and drinking.

I was tempted to get their 750grams of roasted pork knuckle served with caramalised roasted vegetables and apple puree but I thought that would be an over kill! The servings were BIG and I doubt I can eat 750grams of pork knuckle and Hubby didn’t want any. He was craving mussels, so we both ordered ½ kilo of mussels each.

I ordered something different, ½ kilo of the Mariniere which was white wine, celery, garlic and mixed herbs. It was a little salty for my liking, I preferred the Provencale – at least you can dip the rye bread in the tomato sauce, the Mariniere was just too satly.

Hubby ordered ½ kilo of Oriental – with garlic, ginger, spring onion and a dash of light soy. I didn’t expect him to pick this, as I thought he would have chosen the Provencale but he wanted to try something different. It wasn’t ‘oriental’ at all. I couldn’t really taste the soy sauce, but it was as salty as my Mariniere – not sure if I am a fan of this either.

Frites doesn’t just offer mussels, they also have fish and chips, schnitzels, burgers, beef stew, duck, bangers and mash and many more.

The waiter / waitresses in Frites were all very attentive and well trained in matching special beers with each individual order. It’s a great place for celebrations or just catching up with friends. I certainly enjoyed the mussels and fries, the venue, the vibe and atmosphere!

GA’s ratings: 7.5 / 10

Frites Belgium on Tap

Shop 1& 2, 1st Floor, Queen’s Palace

74 Queen’s Road

Central, Hong Kong

Ph: +852 2179 5179

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Belgos East @ QB

Our eating troops have not been the same lately. One member is not working in Central, so it makes it difficult for all of us to have lunch now. It doesn’t stop us from catching up for dinner / drinks and even board games, but lunch is just not the same anymore! So when Ms G suggested lunch in her working hood, I was more than happy to go… food… catch up… girlie chit chat… how can I say no to that?

She suggested this place call Belgos East, and invited Hubby also. Funnily, Hubby works in the same location and I have never ever had lunch with him. Why? I guess it’s not something we do. In Sydney, we both work in the city and I don’t think we have ever had lunch together.. EVER.. In the 6 years that we have been together – NEVER! So it was quite a novelty to see him for lunch and I was extremely happy to see, G!

Belgos East can be found in Quarry Bay, in Oxford House. I wouldn’t have even known this place existed if G hadn’t recommended it. The menu is quite extensive, ranging from salads, mussels, steak, and ribs. They have different types of Belgium beers, but since we all came for lunch, we didn’t have any!

We started off with fresh bread and pate, which was chicken liver. Bread was warm, crunchy and soft. Chicken liver was nice but have definitely had better.

We ordered a pot of tomato based mussels with olives and white wine. The mussels were cooked to perfection, sauce full of flavour! I haven’t had mussels for a long time, and forgot how tasty they were! (will have to visit the Belgian beer café in Sydney I think for some mussels!)

I was going through a salad phase, so ordered a chicken Caesar salad. The chicken was grilled and salad refreshing! It was missing egg though – I really do like my Caesar salad with egg. Thankfully there were no anchovies, as I am not a big fan at all!

G ordered ribs with chips – I had one rib as I was getting pretty full at this stage, it wasn’t too bad, but wasn’t the best ribs I have tasted. I still think Hurricanes in Sydney are still the best ribs I have tasted. The flavour at Hurricanes was so much better, and the pork ribs were meatier and tender. Regardless, it’s still wasn’t too bad.

Hubby was a little stressed that day, pre-meeting jitters or whatever you want to call it, so was a little quiet, however, G and I – kept chatting and chatting. It was great catching up with G and Hubby.

It’s a great little spot for business lunches or farewell lunches. It can get a tad bit noisy but otherwise, great for mussels if you are craving them.

GA’s ratings: 6.5 / 10

Belgos East

G/F, Oxford House, 979 King’s Road

Quarry Bay, Hong Kong

Ph: +852 2250 5020