Food from around the world

10 dishes & drinks you want to taste in Liege

Beer, chocolate, waffles… The Belgian culinary heritage is a feast for the foodies all over the world! But besides those icons of Belgian gastronomy, there are a lot of little treasures to find if you travel to our country. Today, I’m giving you a list of 10 specialties you should taste during your visit to Liege or the area. Suivez le guide !

1. The boulets à la liégeoise (or : boulets sauce lapin)

Boulets sauce lapin

For whom?

Not suited for vegetarians, the boulets are the comfort food par excellence for the foodies who don’t care too much about their weight (or are ready to make an exception).

What is it?

Probably the favourite dish of the locals! The boulets à la liégeoise or sauce lapin (rabbit sauce, though rabbit is not among the ingredients) are big meatballs (usually a mix of ground pork-beef) covered in a kind a gravy made with sirop de Liege, onions/shallots and vinegar. Boulets are traditionally served with fries (and by the way you should know fries are not French but Belgian!), lettuce and apple compote.

You’ll find boulets on the menu of almost all restaurants and pubs in Liege, every place proposing its own version of the dish (like all traditional meals, there are as many recipes as people who cook it and everyone claims they own the only genuine recipe!).

The boulets are a serious matter in Liege! There is even a confrérie or guild dedicated to this dish. Its members give every year a kind of award (the Boulet de Cristal) to the owner of the restaurant proposing the best version of the dish.

Where can I eat boulets?

  • In a restaurant: the restaurant Chez Philippe located rue Haute Sauvenière also won a Boulet de Cristal in 2011. You’ll eat in a nice room situated in an old mansion with an open kitchen. I also like eating boulets at “Amon Nanesse“.
  • On the go: you can grab boulets in a friterie (fries house or fries cart). They’ll give it to you in a small plastic box, like on the picture!

2. Peket (also written péket or pèkèt)

Chemin du péket, Maison du Péket, Liège

For whom?

The party lover or those who simply enjoy a good drink!

What is it?

Peket is a spirit made with Juniper berries. You can drink it “au naturel” or flavoured. The choice of tastes is almost unlimited: fruits, chocolate, speculoos… You can also drink it “flambéed” and flavoured with violet flowers or cuberdon (a traditional sweet).

Very appreciated in Liege, peket is also popular in Namur.

Where can I drink peket?

One of the most popular places is La Maison du Peket located behind the Place du Marché. You can taste dozens of flavours there.

If you’re in Liege during a festival (for example the 15th of Augustus), you’ll be able to drink peket at almost every street corner! Beware not to drink too much of it if you want a clear head the day after.

Good to know: if you hear people talking about “blanc” in Liege, they probably refer to peket (and not white wine).

3. Rice tart

Tartelette au riz, Une Gaufrette Saperlipopette

For whom?

The foodies with a sweet tooth eager to taste something other than waffles.

What is it?

Like you’ve probably guessed from it’s name: it is a tart made with rice, more specifically rice pudding mixed with egg. It’s a specialty from the town of Verviers but it can be found in the whole area of Liege and the Limbourg (sometimes with crushed macarons or red fruits…). It’s generally served with powdered sugar sprinkled on it.

Where can I eat rice tart?

Most of the cafés sell rice tart around 4 or 5 in the afternoon. You can also find it in most of the bakeries.

4. Boudin blanc

Boudin blanc

For whom?

Delicatessen meat addicts.

What is it?

Boudin is a kind a sausage filled with white cooked meat. You can eat it cold or warm (or grilled on the bbq!).

Where can I taste boudin blanc?

You’ll find boudin blanc in almost every butcher shop in Liege (the serving ladies often offer a piece of boudin to the kids accompanying their parents). I personally recommend to you the delicatessen shop Colson & Fils, rue Neuvice.

5. Le lacquemant

For whom?

Those who are not afraid of a sugar overdose.

When?

The lacquemant is a season product! It’s sold during the October fair (but you can find it during the rest of the year, if you know where to go!)

What is it?

The lacquemant is a kind of thin waffle stuffed and drowned in a thick syrup. The recipe of this syrup is a well kept secret (I think orange blossom is one of the ingredients).

Although created in Antwerpen, the lacquemant is one of the top specialties in Liege. It’s particularly popular during the big October Fair.

Where (and how) can I eat a lacquemant?

If you are in Liege during the October Fair, you won’t even have to look! At any other time, you can taste it in the rue Féronstrée at Désiré de Lilles.

Be warned: it’s really sticky! If you order just one, they will give it to you wrapped in a greased paper. If you are talented, you’ll manage to eat it without having sticky syrup all over your clothes/face… If you buy many, you’ll get them in a box.

You can eat the lacquemants cold or warm.

6. Salade liégeoise

For whom?

The traditional and simple food lovers.

What is it?

Composed with potatoes, bacon, onions, green long beans and vinegar, this salad is served lukewarm as a dish or a starter. Like for every traditional dish, there are many ways to prepare it (with hard eggs, pearl onions, a cream sauce…). I like to prepare it with vinegar mixed with soy sauce.

Where can I taste “salade liégeoise”?

At my place? 😉 Joke apart, a lot of restaurants in Liege have the “salade liégeoise” on their menu. I don’t have one that I want to particularly recommend. If you have one, please let me know.

7. The famous “gaufre de Liège” (Liege waffle)

Gaufres de Liège, Une Gaufrette Saperlipopette

For whom?

Everybody!

What is it?

Is it really necessary to describe it? Amongst Liege’s specialties, it’s probably the more famous. The “gaufre de Liege” is a thick sugar waffle sometimes flavoured with cinnamon. It contains big chunks of sugar. You can eat it warm or cold.

Where can I eat a “gaufre de Liège”?

You’ll find it in many places in Liege but if you want the best, go to “Une gaufrette Saperlipopette”, a cute little shop situated rue des Mineurs (between Place du Marché and Hors-Château).

8. Beer

Bouteilles et verres de Leopold7

For whom?

The foam addicts.

Which one?

Well, the choice in Belgium is huge. The Jupiler is the most popular pils in Belgium and it comes from the region of Liege but it’s obviously not the best one.

But there is a growing number of local micro-breweries in town. The Curtius, a high-quality beer produced in Liege is becoming more and more popular. You won’t find it everywhere and it’s not the cheaper one but it’s really worth a try (you can taste it at the Brasserie Sauvenière, next to the cinéma Sauvenière at 12 place Xavier Neujean).

Another one you should try is the Val-Dieu. Produced near Liège (in Aubel), its recipe comes from the monks of the abbey and it’s delicious!

Where?

It’s easy: you can drink beer everywhere. A very nice place: the Brasserie C is the place where the Curtius is made. It’s situated in a beautiful old mansion near the stairs of Bueren.

9. Bouquettes

Bouquette

For whom?

Everyone! Perfect to appease a sudden hunger.

What is it?

A kind of thick pancakes with raisins, often served with powdered sugar.

Where can I eat a bouquette?

A few bakeries sell it (you can also find it at the deli “Chez André”, they have 3 shops in the city center).

10. Herve cheese

For whom?

Certainly not for the faint of heart!

What is it?

A small cheese made from unpasteurized cow’s milk with a very strong smell! This cheese is protected by a label (AOP – Appelation d’origine contrôlée) since 1996.

Where can I eat Herve cheese?

You’ll find it by any cheesemonger (try chez Uguzon in rue Neuvice) and supermarkets in Liege. It also appears on the menu of many restaurants, as an ingredient for some dishes. It’s usually accompanied with Sirop de Liège.

More inspiration for your yummy trip to Liège

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