On stormy evenings, when the wind whistles through the trees and even dogs prefer a walk indoors, I might leave the house and risk ruining my shoes in only three cases. One: when I'm out of dark chocolate. Two: when there's a fire and the flames are closer than 5 m to my couch. Three: when someone invites me for drinks and a chat at De Gouden Vis (it doesn't have to be a famous fashion designer, but it helps).
The reason is simple. De Gouden Vis is the kind of cafe I could actually live in. The wine is nice, there's a great terrace by the water and I think the bar could easily be transformed into a bed. There are Thonet chairs, Art Deco posters, old boarded floors. And the wooden stairs are so authentic you never know whether you'll reach the toilet alive. But if you do, De Gouden Vis is truly a golden place to grow old.
(Oh and when you squeeze your eyes, the bartender almost looks like Stella McCartney.)
De Gouden Vis, 7 Nauwstraat, 2800 Mechelen
- On weekdays open from 11.30 am till midnight
- On Saturdays open from 10.00 am till midnight
- On Sundays open from 02.00 pm till midnight