Thursday, 23 September 2010

Trois: Luxembourg City

Go Ten interior
Source: Go Ten website

I visited Luxembourg City for work last week. Although much-maligned, it's a place worth exploring, as I found myself doing during a rare period of down-time. Here are three places that caught my attention.

1. Restaurant Pizzerie Bacchus
I took visiting Luxembourg City seriously, and bought just about the only dedicated guidebook that exists. Finding myself with an evening to spare and thinking that the hotel's in-room selections a bit limited (five types of omelette, five types of sandwich, expensive fish dishes), I flicked open the Bradt guide, found the 'cheap eats' section (I am a responsible corporate citizen when travelling on expenses; plus our nightly dinner allowance is of the McDonald's Happy Meal side of punitive) and settled on Restaurant Pizzerie Bacchus.

This is a great pizzeria serving beautiful pizzas baked in an authentic wood-fired oven. The staff are friendly (expect a heartly farewell and a handshake from the manager) and the restaurant itself is superb. I elected to sit on the covered terrace (which could do with some repairs) and enjoyed a quiet romana pizza and a glass of a bitter orange drink which could only be described as being how I'd expect Campari and Irn Bru to taste like.

For €15 it was a steal, and probably the best pizza I've had since John's Pizzeria in Greenwich Village.

32, rue du Marché-aux-Herbes

2. Go Ten
There is a bit of a online furore about the lack of a Starbucks branch in Luxembourg City, which is something of a surprise given how many expats there are here. This isn't in any way a bad thing as it encourages you down the non-chain route. Walking back to my hotel I chanced upon this trendy, sleek, dark bar-cum-noodle restaurant with a pulsing electronic soundtrack and pretty waitresses.

Avoiding mid-afternoon cocktails on the basis of principal I elected for a coffee and a chance to chill out in the funky surroundings. I would have stayed there all afternoon if it wasn't for the small inconvenience of my flight home.

10, rue du Marché-aux-Herbes

3. CD Buttek Beim Palais
This tiny, cramped shop caught my eye after I'd left Bacchus for an evening wander around the city. More specifically, the Neu! boxset in the window caught my eye, so after Go Ten I made a point of popping in before I left for the airport. I'd describe it as being like a record fair stall inside a shop.

The shop had good jazz and ambient / electronica sections and middle racks stacked to the rafters with vinyl from every genre imaginable. I settled for a Pete Shelley 7" before temptation got the better of me.

16, rue du Marché-aux-Herbes

CD Buttek Beim Palais window display
Source: MJA Smith

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