City wanderings - and a pilgrimage to some of the best eating and drinking spots in Brussels. Or maybe not eating or drinking - ah, oh well.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Les Tartes de Françoise

Why, why, why am I so maddeningly indecisive?  Is it the availability of so many appealing sweet and savoury options in one place that makes me so?  Anyway, there I was at Les Tartes de Françoise, periliously near closing time on a Sunday afternoon, trying to select a dessert to take to a dinner party.  It was patiently explained to me that only certain tarts were left, in either small or large versions.  These nuggets of information were repeated several times, but my brain struggled to process anything and I was racked with indecision: which one to buy?

Finally I knew.  It had to be the moelleux chocolat haut!  My hosts liked chocolate best, and although I was disappointed that I was too late for fromage blanc speculoos, rhubarbe crumble à l'orange or, my personal favourite, tarte au citron meringuée , this one would still be very well received.  A large one would be too much for four, but large equals better value and there would be some left for others, perhaps even for me.

I slipped out clutching my tart, still unsure if I had the "right one", conscious that I must have embarrassed myself in there (mental note to self: in future, make choice at home and order online!)  In fact, if you have a particular favourite note that a steady procession of people turn up at Les Tartes de Françoise on the weekends for their bulk orders, made on the premises – presumably either to sell in their restaurants or to pass off as their own.  So if you turn up late the locusts may have stripped this unassuming atelier of all its supplies.  Unfortunately (for the restaurants), their secret is out and I have spotted Françoise's versions in many a shop window and at dinner parties. 

Of course, if you're not sure that your dinner party invite is worth its tart, then another option is a sharing picnic in the tranquil gardens of the Abbaye de la Cambre, a short walk away.

75 Avenue de l'Hippodrome
1050 Bruxelles
Tel : 02 640 88 41
Fax: 02 644 95 30

Open Monday to Saturday 9:00 to 18:00
Sunday from 9:00 to 16:00

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