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“a wasted opportunity”
Review of Den Gouden Harynck

Den Gouden Harynck
Ranked #130 of 734 Restaurants in Bruges
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $0 - $108
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Late Night, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Reviewed October 6, 2012

Oh dear what a shame and we were so looking forward to it. The evening started badly when we were greeted by a lady who spoke so quietly we could hardly hear her. we were shown to a table that was almost in a litlle alcove used by the waiters who were back and forth by our table all night - quite intrusive.
Food was very much out of the 1990s - with portions too small. An amuse bouche only amuses if you have sufficient to taste.First starter and second course were pretty good though the burnt onion on the scallops is one ingredient too many. Main course was average but small and the desert of fig and icecream was less than inventive - though the cumin ice was pleasant enough.
The whole event took more than two hours with long gaps between courses sufficient for us to complain that we felt ignored.
After the meal when we expressed our views about the seating we felt that they were dismissed out of hand. In fact we were given two different answers which seemed to contradict each other.
Next time in Bruges we will chose one of the other starred restaurants

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2  Thank ChrisnMoya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (441)
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192 - 196 of 441 reviews

Reviewed September 18, 2012

Once a year, for our anniversary, we grant ourselfs an exceptional dinner. This year we chose this restaurant and were pleased in every way.

The venue on itself is exceptional: a mediaval building in the centre of historical Bruges decorated in a very stylish modern design. Everything in the interior invites you to a real "zen" experience. You hardly even notice the waiters moving around.

We chose to go for the 4 course Market menu. After some apetisers (really OK but not that exceptional) we had marinated tuna with fresh salad, brill with fresh herbs and lamb with turnhip and beet. And all of those were exceptional. Great cuisine. As a dessert we had cheese.

With the fish we had a great Chardonnay but afterwards the Barollo was one to remember. Trust the sommelier!

In my opinion this restaurant can favourably be compared to "starred" Michelin restaurants

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1  Thank Hilde-Claude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2012

We went on a Saturday when the chef, Phillippe Serruys, offers a tasting menu of fresh produce of the day. All courses were extremely good, bringing oohs and ahhs on tasting. There were the expected amuses and palate cleansers as well. Everyone was very friendly and attentive but not to the degree where you have barely had a sip of wine before your glass is refilled. M. Serruys came out at the end and chatted to each table. The entire experience was worth the vast expense!

1  Thank kukalu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 27, 2012

On a sweltering August lunchtime, Den Gouden Harynk was a cool calm oasis in the centre of the old town.

We opted for the 39€ three course set lunch menu with a little trepidation after reading a few reviews on this site that are critical of that option. There is no choice on this menu but we were happy to give ourselves up to the chef and our trust was rewarded with a meal that may well be the best I have had. We had a starter of brill, a main course of Iberico pork and a coconut, passion fruit and chocolate dessert. Each course was extraordinary: technically complex but perfectly balanced with true, clean flavours.

Although at 39€ per head before drinks this menu is not cheap in absolute terms, I think it was the best value meal I have eaten. There were amuse bouche before and between the courses that were also delicious. We are keen to return and try the more extensive "Market Menu" or even the six course taster menu for a special occasion.

Having had to watch it pass our table a number of times we were unable to resist the cheese trolley and this was a good decision. The service was very good and we were reluctant to leave.

Very highly recommended.

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Thank Hullite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 25, 2012

We'd made the booking for a Saturday evening meal to celebrate both of our birthdays and therefore had requested a pleasant table, which we got. Our expectations were quite high, as it is a Michelin star restaurant and was recommended by a friend with a developed palate.
The host was charming, welcoming, gentle and smiley - a Helen Mirren look-a-like, which after few glasses of Champagne made me look twice.
Saturday night obviously their busiest, the chef prefers to offer only one menu for everyone, to concentrate on the service as well as the quality of the food. So when we had a first peak at the menu, I had a short moment of panic, 1 menu, no a la Carte, the only choice you had to make was whether you're having 4 or 5 courses as well as the wine(s) to accompany your dinner. My boyfriend reassured me that we are far from being fussy eaters and a strong G&T was ordered to ease the nerves.
The menu was actually perfect, a couple of Amuse-Bouche to start with. Jacques Selosse Initial Champagne was ordered to accompany the fresh crab served with avocado mousse and a sweetcorn sorbet followed by herb crusted brill with pickled vegetables. Still sipping the Champagne we enjoyed some panfried goose liver served with wild strawberries, blackberries and its coulis...the perfect match!
The service was great and the pace between dishes as expected.
A bottle of Volnay (personal favourite) 2006 Boillot was poured to marry with the best lamb dish we've ever had. We like our meat pink if not red and we could compare the piece of Sisteron lamb like fudge as it was an absolute delight, succulent, melting meat, so good that I can't remember what it was served with!
To end our 5-course meal, Monsieur orders the dessert a "moussy" trio of chocolate, passion fruit and coconut while I opt for a trolley of mature cheeses.
I have still got a smile on my face just thinking about it...

The evening was an absolute delight. At the end of the evening, the chef came to introduce himself and gave us some tips on how to cook the lamb.
We would say the best Michelin star we've experienced beating some great names in the UK and France (service, quality and value wise).

Thank you to Mr & Mrs Harynck, to the Sommelier and the rest of the team - we'll be back!

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1  Thank HestiandAli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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