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Peace, love and pasta TEXT: MALIN NORMAN | PHOTOS: BOCCA PASTABAR
For honest, homemade pasta, head to Bocca Pastabar in Bruges or Ghent. And look out for the food truck with its delicious pasta at many of this summer’s festivals! Based around the idea of buying fresh pasta for a reasonable price in takeaway boxes, Bocca Pastabar started some 11 years ago and is still going strong today, now with two locations; Bruges and Ghent. Initially targeting students, it is now a popular spot for locals and tourists alike. At this friendly and welcoming pasta bar, customers can either be served at the table for a restaurant feeling or opt for a convenient takeaway. Customers choose the type of pasta they want, one of the delicious sauces to accompany it, and finally the toppings. Every week, there is a ‘pasta of the week’ based on seasonal ingredients. For instance, in winter spicy salsas and broccoli and in summer cold pasta salads with pesto and sun-dried tomatoes. The menu also includes classics such as carbonara, and vegetarian and vegan options, so there is something for everyone. In particular, the tasty sauce called ‘Bocca’ is popular – a spicy tomato sauce with a bit of cream, 54 | Issue 54 | June 2018
served with or without bacon, and with a secret herb mix. Common for all dishes is that the pasta is fresh. “There are a lot of pasta places in Belgium and some of them have readymade sauces,” says manager Jonathan. But people know that the pasta here is made on a daily basis. They can really taste the fresh ingredients.” Loyal customers appreciate Bocca Pastabar for its affordable price and quality ingredients, with comments such as “awesome food, great value for money” and “quality pasta meals in a box”. And one sums it up: “hot, fresh, tasty, cheap – perfect combo”.
With a focus on sustainability, Bocca Pastabar is also part of the international Too Good To Go food waste revolution. The food is served in eco-friendly takeaway boxes and if an order is cancelled or changed before served, the box is not thrown away. Instead, people can claim these dishes for half price through the Too Good To Go app. “It’s the future. We don’t throw our food away and we hope others follow suit,” says Jonathan. This summer, Bocca Pastabar also has a food truck available at some of the local festivals in Bruges and Ghent. Do not forget to try that special ‘Bocca’ sauce! Dweerstraat 13, 8000 Brugge Opening hours: Mon-Fri: 11:30 – 20:00 Sat: 11:30 – 19:00 Sunday: closed Recollettenlei 2, 9000 Gent Opening hours: Mon-Sat: 11:30 – 22:00 Sunday: closed