1. Cuberdons or noses:
One of the most famous Ghent specialties and traditional product is the cuberdon or known in Ghent as “a neuzeke”. They look like purple noses or cones. Nowadays you have them in all kinds of colors, but a real nose is purple. Under the harder exterior is a jelly-like syrup with usually a violin or raspberry flavor, but you can find them in different flavors. In the center of Ghentat the beginning of the Long Mint at bakery Himschoot, you can buy them at two noses sellers who are, to say the least, hard competitors of each other. In the same vegetable market (Groentenmarkt) you can now also find them diagonally opposite the Galgenhuisje at BAM, the Belgian Ambachelijke Markt. Also available at Confiserie Temmerman on the Kraanlei number 79 (Same street - House of Alijn). They sell all kinds of old-fashioned sweets from the past, including muiletrekkers (red around sour candy).
Opening hours Temmerman: Open every day from 11u00 to 18u00. Closed on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday
2. Chocolate and pralines:
Ghent is known all over the world for its excellent chocolate and pralines that are made there. There are certainly 10 stores in Ghent where you can buy quality chocolate to take back for friends or family. Pralines are made with flavors that you have never tasted before. Here are some addresses in the center of Ghent where you can buy a few boxes that you will certainly score with family and friends! Go over the name for more info.
Luc Van Hoorebeke
Open every day from 10u00 to 18u00. Classic chocolaterie. From the shop window you can sometimes follow the making of the chocolates and chocolate.
Yuzu by Nicolas Vanaise & C.
Open every day from 10u00 to 18u00 except Sunday and Monday
Special taste creations.
Open every day from 9u00 to 18u30 except Sunday
Everything revolves around the purity of the flavors.
3. Kroakemandel "The caviar for the people"
As a child I have seen them being sold. They were sold in a pointy bag on the street and sometimes you got them with a pint at a cafe. Especially during the Ghent festivities, the Kroakemandels were sold quickly, but now they are harder to find. Kroakemandels are actually just salted and fried peas. Now the typical Ghent specialty is mainly still to be had during the Ghent festivities. You can still get them served in café De Folklore in the Lange Steenstraat in Ghent for the time being.
4. Ironed mastellen
Still available in café “The new unfree skipper” and at the Patershol parties. The aperitif bar has a heated terrace with a view of the Graslei. Location: Guild house of the unfree skippers on the Korenlei. A Ironed Mastel is one of the best-known Ghent specialties. It's a cinnamon-flavored sandwich-like bun with caramelized brown sugar. See point 2. Patershol - What to do in Ghent.
5. Gentse kletskoppen
The Gentse Kletskop is a thin crunchy biscuit made mainly of butter and sugar. For sale at the Vleeshuis in Ghent - Groentenmarkt 7
6. Mustard from Tierenteyn-Verlent
Handcrafted Ghent mustard since 1790 by Tierenteyn-Verlent.
The mustard is pumped into the store from the cellar, where the mustard is made, into a wooden barrel. In the shop the mustard is then scooped into the well-known hand-turned stone pots. You can find the Tierenteyn store at the Groentenmarkt 3 (Lange Munt) and is also known for its pickles and vinegar.
7. Ghent snowballs
This Ghent specialty is only available from September to March and is made by Tanguy Serraes, who has taken over the company Confiserie Larmuseau. Ghent snowballs are made with whipped margarine, look white because of the icing sugar and have a layer of chocolate underneath. They melt like snow in the sun. There are already 8 different types on the market. It is possible to pay a company visit to the production department of Confiserie Larmuseau in Dutch, French and English. Snowballs are for sale at Jack's House on the Graslei and at the Groentenmarkt.
8. Gentse mokken
Gantian mokken are biscuits with a strong aniseed flavor and made from flour and syrup. The name "mokken" would come from the most recent word mokke, meaning young girl. For sale at confiserie Temmerman - Kraanlei 79
9. Gentse waterzooi
Another tasty typical Ghent specialty is Gentse waterzooi. It is made from vegetables, cream, potatoes with mostly chicken or fish. It has been served for years as a kind of soup with bread. Probably during the Middle Ages freshwater fish was used, which was then abundant in the Ghent rivers. It was the favorite dish of Emperor Charles V. Because the pollution of the river water they now mainly uses chicken.
10. Talamini Ice
Talamini ice cream has been a traditional specialty since 1959 and is best known by the elderly Gentenaars. The ice cream is available at Jack's House on the corner of Graslei and Hooiaart. You can also eat delicious traditional Belgian waffles and Snowballs.
Beer country Belgium!
If you come to Ghent, you should taste one or more beers. Belgium has more than 1500 beer types, but the most famous in Ghent is the Gentian Gruut and is brewed with herbs. And what is that herb called? Well... Gruut! You can visit the Ghent city brewery or just drink a Gruut. You can choose between a blonde, brown, amber or white Gruut. A tour of the brewery must be reserved and costs at least 11 euro (3 beers included) or 16 euro with extra Ghent specialty snacks.
Tip: You can combine a visit to the Ghent beer brewery with a guided boat trip on the Leie. Reservations can be made here or on + 32 (0) 9-269 02 69
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday from 11u00 to 18u00 (Friday and Saturday to 23u00), only open on Sunday at 14u00 to 19u00
Where: Rembert Dodoensdreef - 9000 Gent
You can also always visit the artisan brewery Brouwbar in the Patershol. In the Brouwbar you can taste different beers that are brewed on the spot.
You can find the brewery in the Oudburg 70 / 72A
Opening hours: Thursday and Friday from 16u00 to 23u00, Saturday from 15u00 to 23u00, Sunday from 15u00 to 20u00, Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday closed.
Beer tasting with guide through the city center
Ghent has a total of about 500 cafés, but no fear, on this walk you only pay a visit to 5. You make a 3 hour guided walking tour and learn all about the beer history of Ghent. Along the way you can taste five different types of beer, of which 2 can exclusively be tasted on this circular walk. I myself have not done this tour of Ghent (yet), but I think it's a nice idea. It is something different than just going to a café!
Price: 39 euro per person. You can check and reserve the dates on the Beerwalk page.
Departure is at the Town Hall of Ghent (Sint-Jorishof) on the corner of the Botermarkt / Hoogpoort.
Best beer cafes in Ghent
If you just want to go for a tasting at a café without a tour or visit a brewery, then these bars are worth a visit!
165 beers on the menu
Address: Groentemarkt 9. Open every day from 11u00 to 1u00
This café has the largest number of different beers in Ghent (500). Caution! If you order a Max that is poured into a boot-shaped glass, see that you wear fresh stockings. You have to drop off your shoe that will be raised in a basket. You get your shoe back when you return the beautiful glass to the patron 😉
Address: De Dulle Griet Friday market 50. Open every day from 12u00 to 1u00 (Sunday to 19u30)
The smallest café in Ghent and non-stop open since 1776
Address: Groentenmarkt 5. Open every day from 10u00 to 1u00
Fact: The name "Galgenhuis" comes from the place where convicts had to wait for the execution of their sentence.
Brown beer café at the Sint Jacobs 17
For a good trappist or other special beer
Opening hours from 16u00 to 2u00 (Friday and Saturday to 3u00)
What to do in Ghent
Via the link “What to do in GhentYou will find the most important sights and activities in Ghent's city center and how to get to Ghent. Not only a top 10 of the most important locations in Ghent, but also what you can do there in the evening and which museums are worth visiting.