Restaurant proposal

Is proposing in a Michelin-starred restaurant a good idea? Peter Goossens says, “Yes!


Visiting a Michelin-starred restaurant is all about a one-of-a-kind experience and living in the moment. Would you like to make this culinary experience extra memorable with a unique proposal? Peter Goossens’ restaurant, Hof van Cleve, was awarded Belgium’s Best Restaurant 2021’ by the World Culinary Awards, so it’s a great idea to propose there! The star chef would be delighted to take you on an ultra-romantic culinary adventure.

A portion of tears… of happiness!

“In my opinion, a Michelin-starred restaurant is the perfect place to propose,” says Peter Goossens. A lot of couples have proven him right in the past: “Proposals regularly take place at the Hof van Cleve,” says Peter. “It is an intimate but very moving event where people sometimes shed a tear. Fortunately, they are always tears of joy,” he laughs. “To celebrate a yes, some people like to bring a bottle of champagne to the table.” What a great idea for a charming restaurant proposal!

Incorporating a secret message

A successful proposal should, of course, be accompanied by a beautiful engagement ring. But how do you discreetly deliver the ring to the bride-to-be during this restaurant proposal idea? “The engagement ring can be delivered to the Hof van Cleve either beforehand or on the evening of the proposal itself. The person who wants to propose then goes ‘to the toilet’, for example, and secretly gives us the ring. The chef of the kitchen or I will take care of it. To ensure everything runs smoothly, we work closely with the venue’s maître d’. Often a symbol or object is agreed upon in advance so they can recognise the dish with the ring in it. In this way, it is delivered to the right table,” Peter explains. So, it’s perfectly simple to include an engagement ring in a proposoal at a Michelin-starred restaurant.

A hidden gem

The Hof van Cleve team often looks for an original, food-based idea to present the engagement ring during a restaurant proposal. Peter explains, “The ring is always incorporated into a dish in some way. For example, we’ve hidden an engagement ring under a dome or in a dessert before. Of course,  just don’t expect it in a chocolate mousse – we make sure that the ring always stays clean! Sometimes, we get the craziest questions. For example, we once brought oysters to the table. The bride-to-be opened her oyster and found…a beautiful engagement ring! The surprise was enormous and the proposal successful”, Peter smiles. What a fabulously creative idea for proposing in a Michelin-starred restaurant!

Celebrating a civil wedding in Hof van Cleve

You don’t have to limit your ideas just to proposing in a restaurant; even after sealing the deal, the couple can visit the Michelin-starred restaurant as part of their wedding celebrations. “We often welcome families who come here for an intimate meal; for example, some couples like to come back to celebrate their love with their parents and siblings. We also regularly accommodate somewhat larger groups for civil weddings, who may or may not hire Hof van Cleve exclusively for their wedding breakfast. Everyone is more than welcome, and we like to spoil everyone. Anything is possible in the Hof van Cleve: pampering comes first! You can even make suggestions for the menu in advance, which we quickly respond to. I myself am a big fan of dishes with caviar. For me, this celebratory ingredient often completes a dish”, says Peter Goossens.

If you choose any of these restaurant proposal ideas when dining at a Michelin-starred restaurant or have any unique suggestions of your own, we’d love to know. Let us know in the comments below!

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