Shortly after Aan de Poel** reopened after a full remodeling, we went for lunch to celebrate Chantal’s birthday.

That remodeling was necessary after disaster struck Aan de Poel on July 6. A fuse box shorted in the middle of the night, and in the resulting devastating fire, the restaurant’s entire interior (including wine storage ūüėĪ) was lost.¬†As the building was still structurally sound, they quickly decided to strip everything and rebuild from scratch and also include some design ideas for which they never found a proper timing to actually implement.

After 7 frantic weeks, the revamped Aan de Poel reopened early September.¬†We visited a couple of weeks in and were impressed. The window behind the new reception desk providing a sneak peek of the kitchen is a lovely touch. Inside the dining area, smart changes in the floor plan provide a more open feeling. As we had lunch here not long¬†before, we were pleased to conclude that the “old” ambiance was not lost.

From a menu perspective, nothing changed. Besides the daily 3- or 4-course lunch menu, you have various √† la carte options, while for dinner, there is a monthly seasonal Chef’s menu from which you also choose several courses. We selected the 4-course lunch (‚ā¨62 regular / ‚ā¨50 for vegetarian) with halfsies wine pairings (‚ā¨20).

The relief and renewed enthusiasm to be back in business were clearly tangible throughout the entire team. The creativity in the kitchen was definitely not impacted as we were served beautiful and delicious dishes, and the wine pairings were impeccable. It was great to see Aan de Poel back in the saddle!

Nibbles: Olive Tartelettes | Watermelon and Horseradish
Amuse: Smoked Tomato with Violet Mustard and crispy Shallots
1. Asian-style marinated Lobster, Sea Vegetables, Samphire Jus and Sambal / Soy Sauce Dressing (Chantal had a similar dish with an Eggplant Baba Ghanoush base)
2a. Panfried Sole, Cauliflower, Pomegranate and Puffed Grains served with Oxtail Jus
2b. Caramelised onions, Cauliflower, Pomegranate and Puffed Grains served with Vegetable/Red wine Jus
3a. Truffle French Toast with Beef Carpaccio, Fillet of Beef with Mushrooms and Red Onion Dressing
3b. Truffle French Toast with Beet Carpaccio, Sautéed Vegetables, Mushrooms and Truffle and Red Onion dressing

I rarely use the term “foodporn” on this blog, but it is the only appropriate term for this 2-piece stunner from pastry chef Jordy van Ettinger.¬†Gorgeous and delicious!

Part 1: Blackberry sugar ball filled with an amazing ice cream made from purple shiso leaves (the ones you see in the picture which have an aniseed-like flavor), fresh blackberries, and various gels and crumbles
Part 2: Blackberry Mousse roll with a tart Kaffir Lime Gel and White Chocolate
Friandises with the coffee / tea: Pasteis de Nata, Fudge and Bonbon with apple

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