“Why sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” – Queen of Hearts, Alice in Wonderland.
Droplets of wax pool at the base of an antique candlestick holder. An orange flame breathes and extends towards the painted ceiling. Rows of teapots smile from the shelves – winking and whispering to the suiker and sucre jars across the dining room. Glistening chandeliers cast a glow over tea-sippers and bounce rays of warmth off walls the color of a rain-kissed rose. This is Alice. I’ve found my new favorite tearoom in Belgium.
We’ve come to Gent for the GentseFeesten, but as much as I love eating food on the streets while trying to keep my youngest from jumping out of his stroller, I also enjoy trying to keep him pinned to his seat in fancy-ish restaurants. Just kidding. Kind of. I saw Alice advertised in the Visit Gent (Tips from Locals!) pamphlet and decided it was a place we needed to discover. I’m so glad we did.
Free to sit where you like – there are a couple of beautiful and dainty rooms and a garden terrace. Grab a book or magazine from the rack upon entering as well – the kinderenboeken slot included a pop up Alice in Wonderland book (in English) that entertained the kids as we awaited our food.
The menu was extensive (and also in English) and we ordered both a Sweet and a Salty Breakfast for our family of five to share. The typical European breakfast including sliced meats and cheeses, croissants with nutella, jelly, and butter were complimented by your favorite American goodies of bacon, scrambled eggs, and toast. Coffee, served strong, aside fresh squeezed orange juice rounded out the meal nicely.
The staff, dressed in cute dresses with bows in their hair – reminiscent of Alice herself – was friendly and the delicious food was served efficiently. As we devoured every crumb of our breakfast – indulging on yogurt with fruit and grains and toast spread with nutella – even the beautiful ambiance of the restaurant seemed to calm my family. We exited with a sense of nostalgia and satisfaction, ready to wander the streets of Gent.
“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?” Alice asked.
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where -” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
Pearl of Wisdom: Alice accepts Cash Only