The sad news of Nora Ephron’s passing this week got me thinking about her great movies. I love them all – When Harry Met Sally, You’ve Got Mail, Julie & Julia – and of course one of the most memorable scenes of all time always comes to mind.
Finding a sandwich that good is hard to do! While you can’t get a Pastrami or Rueben sandwich like at Katz’s Deli in New York here in Brussels, I did discover somewhere to have a tasty sandwich last weekend while wandering around the Marolles area.
Picnic, located just across from the church at Place de la Chapelle, is a traiteur (catering company) and sandwich shop offering up interesting ingredients and specialty sandwiches. They also advertise themselves as a tea-room, with all sorts of drinks (hot and cold) and desserts. After a stroll up and down Rue Haute, we ducked in to get a bite to eat (and get out of the rain) and were surprised to find such a great little place.
A cute sign outside the door indicates that a “picnic area” is available on both the ground and first floor. There’s also outdoor seating which we didn’t get a chance to enjoy due to the pouring rain last Sunday. The place was packed but we managed to squeeze into a corner upstairs which looks out over the square.
As we had never been before, the server behind the counter very kindly explained the menu and choices of the day. The deli counter is full of different meats and toppings to build your own sandwich or you can choose from one of the options on the menu. Alternatively, you can have an assiette (plate) with the same ingredients as the sandwiches.
After perusing the menu and counter, I settled on the beef in honey and lemon sauce on brown bread, and added grilled onions and eggplant on top. The husband went for the daily special – escalope of veal – piled high with Provolone cheese, caramelized onions and mushrooms. We both also ordered the soup of the day, a very flavorful mushroom which hit the spot on such a rainy day.
The staff is very cheerful and, unlike in some sandwich shops, it was clear that they cared about the quality of the food and customers. This is definitely a good spot for a “picnic” especially when the weather isn’t cooperating to enjoy one outside on the grass. Let’s just hope that isn’t the case for the rest of the summer!
Where’s your favorite place in Brussels for a sandwich?
16 Place de la Chapelle, 1000 Brussels
Tel: +32 2 503 63 23
Open: Monday to Friday, 8am-7pm, Saturday & Sunday, 8:30am-7pm