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Discover the best Asian restaurants in Antwerp

Want to discover the best Asian restaurants in Antwerp? Always ready for some good Chinese, Vietnamese or Japanese food? This article will show you five of the most unique Asian venues in Antwerp’s city centre.

 

You might have missed it, but we’ve all been locked up at home for more than two months now. We’re allowed to shop again in Belgium, but restaurants and pubs remain closed for now. This of course, is no fun, especially not for the owners. No less than one in four places could face bankruptcy in the months to come. This leaves us with only one thing to do: we need to fulfill our goddamn civic duty and go on a wild eating and boozing binge as soon as everything opens up again. Yes, a drunken revelry of epic proportions is the only way to save our small businesses from annihilation. And I wouldn’t be a true patriot if I wasn’t willing to do my part.

 

Discover the best Asian restaurants in Antwerp

In the next few months, I will mainly be writing about Antwerp, and more specifically about all of my favourite establishments in several different categories. This of course, exclusively to give my support and not at all to score a couple of free meals. Altruism is the cornerstone of my existence (call me, food people).

 “No less than one in four bars and restaurants could face bankruptcy in the months to come. This leaves us with only one thing to do: we need to fulfill our goddamn civic duty and go on a wild eating and boozing binge as soon as everything opens up again.”

Asian restaurants already had a rough time before the lockdown started. This because the average client thought every plate of fried rice he ordered was personally dispatched from Wuhan to their table by some coughing Chinese guy from Alibaba. It feels appropriate to start my culinary discovery tour by talking about these places. So here’s a list of my favourite Asian restaurants in Antwerp. Have fun and Màn màn chī, my gourmet friends! That means “enjoy your meal” in Mandarin. I’m a learned man.

 

1. Ni Shifu: an authentic Chinese restaurant in Antwerp

*Ni Shifu is currently closed and I didn’t have any images of it. So enjoy this random picture of Shanghai’s East Nanjing Road for the time being.

Newsflash: the chop choy you ordered at the Golden Palace takeaway last Friday is about as Chinese as the average Instagram beach boy’s tattoos. It’s basically westernised fast food catered to our feeble European taste buds. Nice, but in Beijing you couldn’t lose it to a starving beggar. Luckily there are authentic Chinese restaurants in Antwerp as well. Ni Shifu for example: a tiny place close to the UGC movie theatre. They cook Sichuan food here, which means there’s lots of pepper on every dish. The menu is the size of a roof tile, the rates are very democratic and I’ve never eaten anything I didn’t find incredibly tasty here. Pick a couple of adventurous dishes, order some Tsingtao to go with it and start slurping those noodles baby! www.nishifu.be

 

2. Super Natural: varied Asian dishes in the student area

On the edge of the University neighbourhood – on the corner of Keizerstraat and Minderbroedersrui – lies Super Natural. This small and colourful restaurant is run by a sweet couple, and offers a varied kitchen that doesn’t limit itself to one country. Japanese tempura, Chinese dim sum and Vietnamese spring rolls: you can get all of them here and everything is freshly made. It’s not an expensive place at all and the sweet & sour chicken rice bowl is one of the tastiest treats you can present me with in Antwerp. Their homemade ice-tea is yummy as well. What are you waiting for? www.facebook.com/supernaturalantwerpen/

 

3. 5 Flavors Mmei: Antwerp’s best dumplings

Somewhat larger and in the south of Antwerp is 5 Flavors Mmei. The chef is a master of the Cantonese kitchen and was awarded the title of “Asian of the Year” (yes, that’s really what it’s called) by Gault&Millau a couple of years ago. This place is especially known for its dumplings, which are the best in the city. If you want a taste of all of them, order the dim sum menu. Want to try some other Asian dishes as well? Order the chef’s gourmet menu instead. When I took pictures for the city here a while ago, they put an entire plate of food in front of me, and then watched me closely to see whether I enjoyed it appropriately (see picture). Nice people. Practise your ni haos and xie xies beforehand, and you might even get a little applause after ordering. www.5flavors-mmei.be

 

4. Little BÚN: Vietnamese street food in the city centre

Little BÚN – yell that name, the accent is there for a reason – is the little brother of the much fancier BÚN in the south of the city (also an ex Asian of the Year). This tiny restaurant lies close to the many bars of Mechelseplein and serves Vietnamese street food that could have come straight out of the atmospheric alleys of Hanoi: pho, spring rolls, noodles, shrimp cakes, you name it. All produced with local ingredients. Cosy, no-nonsense place for a quick bite. Go out afterwards and sponsor the bars as well. It’s for a good cause! www.bunantwerp.be/little-bun/

 

5. Okoz: a hint of Japan in Antwerp

Okoz is another superb street food restaurant, this one in minimalistic Japanese style. It’s located in Nationalestraat, and if you feel like sushi you’ll have to go somewhere else because they don’t have it. They do sell okonomiyaki though, which is a traditional savoury pancake that comes with many different fillings. In Okoz, they gave this old classic a modern and photogenic twist. You can personalise your whole dish. Choose from fish, meat or veggies, from several toppings and from a variety of side dishes. The result is (depending on your choices) perfect for a healthy and tasty lunch. They’ve installed a nice Instagram corner as well, allowing you to take pictures of your food to your heart’s desire, without disturbing the normal people. We’re living in wondrous times indeed. www.okoz.eu

 

There you go: five great Asian restaurants in Antwerp. Since I only write about places I’ve actually been to, the list will grow longer as soon as I can start eating out again. Do you know any nice Asians yourself (preferably with a restaurant)? Did I forget your absolute favourite? Will you still stick with your takeaway nasi goring? Let it all out in the comments below.

 

Do you prefer booking your Asian restaurants not in Antwerp but on the actual continent? Click here to read my stories on TaipeiSingapore, Delhi and Hanoi. Looking for another destination in Belgium? There are plenty of things to do in Bruges, Spa, KoksijdeLiège and Charleroi as well.

 

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25 Comments

  • Reply
    Wim
    May 25, 2020 at 12:42 pm

    Ni shifu is idd een ongelofelijk goed restaurant. Voor herhaling vatbaar!

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      May 25, 2020 at 12:49 pm

      Da’s zo’n onontdekte parel. Ook maar via via leren kennen.

      • Reply
        Stefan
        May 25, 2020 at 2:08 pm

        Ik ben via

  • Reply
    Carina
    May 25, 2020 at 12:47 pm

    Tot hiervoor niet een grote goesting om uit eten te gaan. Tot nu dus.
    Ga snel weer open! Aub

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      May 25, 2020 at 12:49 pm

      Ik gok dat restaurants op 8 juni wel weer zullen open mogen onder voorwaarden. Laten we met z’n allen hopen.

  • Reply
    Jo
    May 25, 2020 at 2:01 pm

    Kan die tekst niet wat groter zeg??

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      May 25, 2020 at 2:04 pm

      Zeker dat uw browser niet op kleiner schrift staat? Indien niet, ff zoomen. Bij mij is alles meer dan leesbaar.

  • Reply
    Chlow
    May 25, 2020 at 6:59 pm

    Bai wei (in de arteveldestraat) is mijn favoriet voor noodles,
    Vriendelijke mensen, uitgebreide kaart, alles voor een relatief klein prijsje en super lekker.

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      May 26, 2020 at 12:42 am

      Ik zal het eens uitchecken! Dankjewel. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jona
    May 25, 2020 at 9:54 pm

    Bai Wei is inderdaad top voor noodle soup. Hand-pulled noodles! Ook Kunthun achteraan in de straat is leuk en lekker. Beetje gehyped bij alternatief Antwerpen, maar zeer fijn om gerechtjes te delen met een aantal mensen. En ook Ahaar mag eigenlijk niet ontbreken in dit lijstje…

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      May 26, 2020 at 12:43 am

      Ik was eigenlijk aan het denken om de Indische apart te doen, maar zo heel veel zijn er eigenlijk niet. Misschien toch Aahaar maar in deel twee gooien. 🙂

    • Reply
      roos
      May 29, 2020 at 7:38 am

      Op is op in de Prekersstraat, Japanse take away. Als je het niet weet zijn, loop je er voorbij… Lekker en vers, soms moet je er snel bij zijn, want op is op

  • Reply
    bart
    May 26, 2020 at 10:38 am

    probeer es https://www.ploypochana.be/
    een belevenis

  • Reply
    Kristel Lauwers
    May 27, 2020 at 7:12 am

    Azuma in de Verschansingsstraat. Klein maar oh zo fijn!

  • Reply
    Xuan Erika Nguyen
    May 27, 2020 at 10:43 pm

    Hier mijn favorietenlijst op willekeurige volgorde
    – nuoc mam
    – Nimmanhaemin
    – tawan tai taverne
    – overzee
    – mico & jon
    – izumi
    – taj mahal

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      May 27, 2020 at 11:40 pm

      Hey Erika, mercikes. Ik ga stevig mogen blijven sporten als ik die allemaal ga doen. :p

  • Reply
    Els
    July 26, 2020 at 12:49 pm

    En den Table d’ho in Borgerhout?

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      July 26, 2020 at 1:13 pm

      Er komen nog delen! 😉

  • Reply
    Mika
    August 6, 2020 at 8:03 pm

    Fong Mei niet vermeld? Is echt wel een topper!!

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      August 7, 2020 at 1:47 pm

      Volgende keer misschien. 😉

  • Reply
    Nathalie
    August 27, 2020 at 7:37 am

    Table d’ho is zeker een topper, daar moet je is naartoe. En Kunthun is zeer democratisch en lekker maar setting is minder.

    • Reply
      Jonathan Ramael
      August 27, 2020 at 2:41 pm

      Dat gaan we voor deel twee eens checken. 🙂

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