BELLEVILLE RESTAURANT & LOUNGE
What They're Saying ...
From the cordon bleu with its rich sauce and succulent chicken, to the six cheese and charcuterie platter – pungent, aged cheeses combined with a myriad of thinly sliced, subtly salty cured meats – Belleville Restaurant & Lounge is French heaven on a plate. Every detail, flavor and texture has been considered and it shows: right down to the smoothest mashed potatoes you’re ever likely to encounter. If that doesn’t do it for you, then there are pastas, steaks and salads.
And that’s just the half of it with many Vietnamese favorites on the menu offering a light, piquant experience. Try the spring rolls, fresh, crisp and the perfect starter, or the Cha Ca Va Long (Red River fish) cooked before your eyes to your liking. Whether you fancy a light snack or a full blown three-course fine dining extravaganza, Belleville Restaurant & Lounge can provide.
Friday afternoon, sunset is just around the corner and I am perfectly positioned with a whisky sour in hand. As the An Hoi night market begins to bustle and musician James makes his own preparations, the guests settle into their seats and prepare for what promises to be an evening of warmth, music and laughter.
French artist and owner Lionel and his Vietnamese wife, An, have set up a diverse experience: a restaurant offering flavors you just don’t find abroad, thoughtfully selected, high quality Vietnamese delights, classic cocktails, imported beers and live ‘open mic’ music sessions.
Lionel’s vision is to set up creative spaces for expats and travelers to work remotely in dedicated areas in his sprawling complex. Taking inspiration from the Belleville Quartier itself, Lionel hopes to merge culture, creativity and spirituality all in one space. In fact, Lionel’s artistic sensibilities infect Belleville Restaurant and Lounge in every aspect. From the menu to the comfortable lounge areas to the ever-present live music – all is a work in progress that is constantly being improved and refined. Lionel has a long-term vision that is slowly emerging. Indeed Belleville Restaurant and Bar itself could be considered Lionel’s greatest artwork.
Upstairs, the restaurant area has a balcony leaning out over the hubbub below – a great spot for people watching. Up one more flight you’ll find a second bar and lounge area, softly lit, with comfy chairs and huge windows. Lionel plans to use this space for a second round of live music but in a smaller more intimate space. With guest artists from around the world coming in to play and teach both music and dance, this lounge promises to be a communal creative space.
There’s nothing else like Belleville Restaurant & Lounge in Hoi An – with helpful, smiling and attentive service to top it all off, you’ll feel welcome and at ease. Trust me when I tell you you’ll be back again!
Resident musicians take the stage to entertain, with an eclectic mix of contemporary acoustic covers, rock and country classics, and even the occasional Latin number (impressively sung in Spanish). They host the open mic night 7 nights a week and think of it more as a ‘jam session’. From 6pm – 10pm the stage is set with microphones, guitars and a cajón. All that’s needed is a gutsy first-timer or a seasoned singer to get up and share their love of music. Whatever your level or experience, here it is all about community and fun, so put those nerves aside and get involved.
Topics: Hoi An, Restaurants, Bars, French cuisine, Vietnamese cuisine, Open Mic, Live Music