The best of Italy outside Italy ...


Gambero rosso is not only the name of a shrimp, considered the best in the world, but also the name of the most respected gastronomic guide in Italy. For the past few years, this guide has been the authority on the best Italian restaurants outside the boot-shaped country. This year, it crowned an eatery on our shores.

In Knokke-Heist, on the Lippensplein, you will find the winner, Gellius. It may owe its name to the famous Roman magistrate, grammarian and writer of the second century, Aulus Gellius, but it is clear that its international renown is thanks to the talent of its chef Davide Asta, a native of Palermo, Sicily.

Gellius boasts many superlatives, including the attention paid to the high quality raw materials, which arrive every week directly from Italy. The delights served at the table include fish broth-flavoured risotto and smoked scamorza (cheese from the Naples region) served with clams, basil gel and candied lemon on top. You'll also find a nod to Belgian surrealism: "ceci n’est pas un spaghetti à la tomate", pasta cooked in an organic tomato sauce served with pesto and topped with burrata (a traditional string cheese from Puglia). For dessert, it would be remiss not to try the white chocolate, yogurt and lime praline mousse on a strawberry and rhubarb confit sauce.