Six restaurants in the area of the Grand Place in Brussels are to join forces to pull themselves out of the financial difficulties which led to closure in April. The six – four of which overlook the square itself – are La Taverne du Passage, ’T Kelderke, L’Estaminet du Kelderke, La Brouette, La Rose Blanche and Vincent. All came into difficulties when the ownership declared bankruptcy.
The plan to join forces will be presented to the commercial court in Brussels, in an attempt to be allowed to remain open.
In concrete terms, the plan involves a central kitchen cooking simple local cuisine, which will then be sent to the other restaurants, all of which are in close proximity. The Taverne du Passage will continue to operate its own kitchen until the departure of its chef in a year, after which it will join the joint-kitchen system.
Meanwhile the celebrated brasserie Aux Armes de Bruxelles on the nearby Rue des Bouchers is ready to re-open its doors after bankruptcy of its previous owners and its acquisition by its neighbour, the popular moules-frites destination Chez Léon. The new owner has invested one million euros in modernisation, but intends to retain the original DNA of the establishment.
“The authentic flavour must remain the same,” said Cédric Callenaere. Despite the introduction of new techniques such as sous-vide and slow cooking, he said, “Our grandparents should be able to come here and find a vol-au-vent (photo) just as the ate it when they were children”.