| 3 min read
Ozawa is a new Asian restaurant situated somewhere halfway between Gare du Nord and the Brussels Canal. Even though Ozawa is only open around lunchtime, it’s a welcome addition to an area lacking decent bars and restaurants. If you have the opportunity to go there around noon, you’ll discover some delicious Asian specialties that stand out thanks to the careful preparation of fresh ingredients.
Quality Asian food
Originally, Ozawa was launched out of a feeling of culinary homesickness. The owner felt the Asian food in Brussels didn’t meet the standards of the better eateries in China and Japan, so his mission became preparing Asian food the way it should be done. At Ozawa, the staff distinguish themselves by using fresh products only which are all prepared on the spot. Even their noodles are home-made. Actually, everything is so fresh that they do not even have a freezer to conserve products for the long-term. Of course, this requires a lot of time and work, which is why they’ve decided to open around lunchtime only, which enables the staff to finish all the preparations in the morning.
Donburi or ramen?
So what can you eat at Ozawa? The starters menu features Japanese soup, season vegetables, California rolls, gyoza and dim sum. They’re especially proud of their dim sum, which are hand-made every morning. The main dishes are mainly ramen and donburi which can be combined with scampi, chicken, salmon or tofu… There’s also dessert, changing with the season and the inspiration of the chef. Last time we went, we had a tiramisu covered in coconut cream and a slice of kiwi on top. Sounds special, right? The kiwi added a fresh and unexpected touch which was quite nice.
When we visited during the official opening, they had prepared a mini portion of each dish, which enabled us to try a bit of everything. My favorites from that evening were the California salmon roll and the donburi with tofu. Even though I’m not a vegetarian myself, I thought the tofu was well-prepared, slightly crispy and very flavorful. Although these stood out for me, everything we tried was very flavorful and nicely presented.
We also went back a second time around lunchtime to try the normal portions. My donburi chicken was tasty, but I think I still prefer the donburi with tofu, and the portions were fulfilling. It you’re very hungry, you can combine it with one of the starters that were giving me the eye.
To drink I ordered a Ramune, which is some kind of Japanese version of Sprite. To open the bottle, you have to push a little pellet into the drink, which is quite intriguing. I’m still wondering if the pellet’s purpose is just to seal off the bottle or if it also infuses the drink somehow.
Those who don’t have enough time to stay over for lunch can also order online and quickly pick it up at a convenient time. And because Ozawa cares about waste prevention, you might even obtain dishes at a discounted price at the end of the day through the app Too Good To Go – that is if you’re quick enough.
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