It all started with street food in Ireland…. lots of super fresh sustainable (key word) fish cooked to perfection with ingredients inspired by Mexico, Thailand, Jamaica and many more countries… and culminated with taking it indoors!
BIA MARA … translates to Food of the Sea (Irish)… or essentially seafood…. is a newly opened (about 3weeks old) and just around the corner from the Bourse Metro stop. Offering options like Fish it (Haddock, Mackerel, prawns or salmon), Pluck it (chicken) or Plant it (veggie options) served with delicious sides (minty mushy peas, chorizo baked beans, red slaw, hand cut chips with choice of salt or lemon&fennel potato salad), homemade salts & sauces.
I got all excited when I won a free lunch with them via their twitter account (@BiaMaraBrussels), so I dragged HIM and M downtown to share in my excitement … plus I needed the sustenance in order to fight my way through the crowds of 13year old girls who would also be going to watch Twilight Part 2 on Saturday afternoon (yeah, yeah… don’t judge me :))
Their interior design is clean and fresh… the essence of simplicity and as the owner Barry, explains… it was all about creating a street food environment, indoors!
I opted for the *special* of the day – which was a fresh mint and coriander tempura batter around a gorgeous piece of pollock, served with chunky hand cut chips dusted in Seaweed salt & served with their best-selling sauce, Garlic & Truffle… all I can comment was that I was in HEAVEN!
M opted for the Fish Taco – which turned out to be more of wrap than a taco, as their supplier of corn taco’s was not able to supply them with the quality that they were used to in Ireland… but M still raved about it… crunchy fish, red slaw, salad, salsa fresca and honey/tabasco dressing served with a side order of those delicious hand cut chips… this time with Garlic & Chilli salt.
HIM is not a big fish fan (I know, I know… not exactly living up to the full Portuguese equation here…) but he tried out the Piri Piri Buttermilk chicken…. and lets just say that he started to cut the chicken… and when M and I looked again… every single morsel of chicken was GONE! And we had both been SO excited to try out a bite of his… 😦
The owner, Barry, kindly provided the full range of sauces for us to try… and I have to confess that if they sold these separately, I would have gone home with at least 3 bottles! The range includes (from top to bottom, left to right): Garlic Truffle (YUM), Curry Lime (OMG), Tartar, smoked chilli Ketchup, Lemon Cajun (Mmm) & Chipotle:
Would I go again? Hell yes!
Bia Mara Brussels
address: Rue du Marche Aux Poulets 41, Brussels, BELGIUM