Restaurant Den Dyver appears as if it should be a decades if not centuries old Bruges institution, however, the restaurant actually opened in 1992 and since then has established itself as one of the favoured and most respected restaurants in the city.
What attracted us, and I dare say many who choose to visit the restaurant, is that the dishes are cooked using Belgian beer and served with a glass of local beer – or wine if you wish – as an accompaniment. There is an a la carte menu, however, the set menu – which changes monthly – allows you to have 3, 4 or, at times, 5 courses plus a beer or wine selection for between 46 and 74 euros (extras such as aperitifs, coffee and water not included) per person, which represents very good value for the quality of food you are served.
That quality of the food is excellent and inventive, wonderful mixtures of flavours very well cooked and marvellously presented. Details of what we had are below.
Inside the restaurant has a kind of smart country cottage (a large country cottage!) look to it with a wood-beamed ceiling, brick and plaster walls and wooden furniture, however, the crisp white tablecloths, lovely ironwork chandeliers and large fireplace are more country manor house than country cottage. It is an inviting and attractive interior and the staff all of whom were attentive, informative and very friendly aids this ambience.
The restaurant only seats 60 so booking is essential, you can do this and gain a more information about Den Dyver from their website www.dijver.be
I would certainly recommend this restaurant, the food and service are both excellent and the atmosphere convivial and relaxing. My one – very, very slight criticism – was that the gaps between courses were rather long. However, that did allow us to sit back, chat away and enjoy sipping some delicious Belgian beer!
Favorite Dish: We had
Hoppebellen Aperitif (champagne flavoured with hops)
‘n Dievere Blond beer
Grilled Mackerel and Pesto Sorbet with macaroni stuffed with radish and preserved tomato - gorgeous, the fish was earthy and very tasty, the pesto sorbet tasted a bit like walnut ice cream!
Served with Hellekapelle – dry, smoky, rich and crisp
Cod with a foamy butter sauce and watercress soufflé plus potatoes – divine, the fish melted on the tongue
Served with Goldenberg – Wheaty with a bite to it, crisp and very complimentary to the fish
Duck Breast with a red pepper sauce, potatoes baked in honey and time, and aubergine cream with lime – Steve pronounced this as being yummy!
Served with Trappist Rochfort 8 – rich, sugary, dark, a beer to be savoured
Peaches marinated in Oude Geuze, sweet cucumber and buttermilk mousse – the peaches were sharp and tasty, the buttermilk lovely and the sweet cucumber amazing. A really strange but delicious taste!
Mini desserts of Crème Brulee (heavenly), chocolate mouse and white chocolate pralines
2 large espressos
Total for two people 116 euros plus 15 euros tip
(80.39 sterling plus 10.39 sterling, 142.98 US dollars plus 18.48 US dollars)
And worth every penny!
Open: noon-2.00pm and 6.30-9.00pm daily (closed for lunch Tues. & Weds.)
This is my favourite restaurant in Belgium, in fact it's probably my favourite in the whole world! We have been going there for 8 years, and have never had a bad meal.
My tip would be to go at lunchtime, as it's not usually as busy then as in the evening, but make sure you don't have a large breakfast first, and give yourself plenty of time for a nice leisurely lunch!
After you have finished your lunch, you will be ready for a nice casual stroll around Brugge, to walk off your lunch and beer!
Don't expect huge portions, but the food is so rich and tasty, and the beers generally so strong, that you won't leave the restaurant feeling that you haven't had enough.
We usually have a house blonde beer as an aperatif when we arrive, and then choose from the lunchtime menu, always with the accompanying selection of beers that are used in the cooking.
The food is alway very well prepared and presented, and the waiting staff are so attentive.
They always describe the dish in detail, and explain about the accompanying beer, where it was brewed, and what it will taste like.
The head waiter, who I believe is the son of the owners is superb. He is extremely polite and attentive, always giving us a very warm welcome. He appears to be fluent in several languages, as you will tell if you watch hime serving other customers.
You may think this restaurant is a little expensive, but for a special treat or romantic meal I think that this place is a perfect choice if you are visiting Brugge.
This place came highly recommended and it was worth every word... and bite. The interior is characteristic, the staff obliging & multi-lingual... but you soon forget about the surroundings and just dive into the food, which is absolutely de-li-cious. I never thought I'd be able to eat or drink as much as I did there without toppling over the river banks on the way out.
You can chose a la carte or a pre-set 3, 4, or 5 course meal with beer or wine (or no alcohol for that matter).
This is my top recommendation for people who'd like to go outside Brussels. Pity it's not open at daytime, because so few people stay overnight in Brugge.
Favorite Dish: The restaurant describes its cuisine as French, which probably is more of a market placement trick than an accurate description. Really, how many good French beers do you know? ;-)
On our last trip there, we had:
- Turkey, seaweed and white asparagus rolls with beer-based sabayon. Stijn had prawns with broccoli mash and asparagus (& beer) mousse.
- Fish & veggies julien in mint and beer sauce
- Cheese & Kriek
- Strawberry tart & pistachio crockie.
Wow! A truly wonderful meal in a delightful atmosphere. The staff could not have been nicer and we had a great visit with the local couple at the next table who were there celebrating the husband's birthday. That may say it all.....when the locals come to a restaurant for a special evening! Having the waiter pair our courses with beer was a terrific way to enjoy some of the local beers and discover the variety that exists in brewing. Can't wait to come back!
Be prepared to spend some time at this memorable restaurant. I would not go unless I had a reservation because it seems like they only get one seating per evening. All the courses are accompanied by a wine or a beer that is recommended. Excellent service and excellent food. A bit pricey but memorable nontheless.
Favorite Dish: There were two of us and one had meat and the other had fish. The food was fabulous but I can't remember an exact dish. The waitstaff is more than competent recommending a good dish based upon your individual tastes
Situated in an old nice big house, this first rate restaurant is specialized in traditional Flemish dishes prepared with beer.
You can drink the same beer with your dinner as the one they have used in your meal.
In Summertime you can sit in the back at the terrace, covered by greenery. On the terrace dogs are allowed.
Groups capacity of 60 people.
Closed on Wednesdays in during Wintertime also on Tuesdays.
Adviced to make reservations
Favorite Dish: I forgot what I had as it was some years ago (2001?) but it was delicious!
We have eaten at this restaurant 4 or 5 times over the last few years. Previously it was good but on our last visit both myself and my wife suffered food poisoning which could have only come from this restaurant. As a bowel cancer sufferer this was particularly dangerous for me.
We ate the pork for starters, pike-perch main course and blueberry for deserts together with the complimentary courses, on the wine menu.
We are medically qualified and know how to diagnose food poisoning as well as how to treat it and how to identify the source.
We notified the restaurant by email immediately we took ill asking them to look into the matter, not least to safeguard other customers, and to consider a refund of the 164.50 Euro bill.
To my astonishment they never replied initially. I only got a response once I chased it up with them. Their eventual response was so arrogant that we could barely believe it! No concern for us, no apology but a very simple brick wall saying that this could not have possibly happened at their restaurant!
They even maintained this position when we asked them to reconsider matters.
We have eaten at top restaurants all over the world. We are not the sort of people who complain lightly and only once before have we experienced food poisoning and the restaurant concerned then behaved totally responsibly - unlike Den Dyver whose behaviour was totally irresponsible showing no concern either for us or the potential risk to other customers whatsoever.
Eat there at your peril.
We visited this restaurant for lunch and sat out in the courtyard. The decor and ambiance was very good.
My wife ordered artichoke for starters.
She found the vegetable very tough and unpleasant.She could not continue to eat it and sent it back with her reasons.
The chef immediately stormed out of the kitchen and started to shout, very angrily, at my poor wife.
He shouted that my wife simply didn't know how to eat artichoke properly. I would disagree. Fortunately my wife kept her cool.
This is the first time in my life that I have experienced a chef abusing his customer.
I found it quite outrageous and the poor waitresses (very nice and professional) were mortified and apologized to us profusely.
My main course of beef was pathetic. Very dry and overcooked. By this time we just wanted to leave.
We were charged for the uneaten artichoke and the bill for 2 came to Euro 125. We gave a good tip.
So, I see good reviews here but we cannot recommend this restaurant.- unless you enjoy a good fight at lunch.