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Toone

Not Rated.
TooneToone
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

17 Ratings
Ratings: 17
Reviews: 15
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 5.99%
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar ]

Impasse Schuddeveld 6
Brussels, 1000
Belgium
phone: +32 2 513 54 86

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: TheLongBeachBum)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 17 | Reviews: 15 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of byronic
3.46/5  rDev -13.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3

This is a bit of a gem from the perspective of history in Brussels. It's a dark café with little selection but it's the atmosphere and history that is worth the visit.

If you're able to find it it's worth stopping in for a beer and checking out the décor.

Photo of uturn
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Sparky44
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of jrallen34
3.56/5  rDev -11.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3

This place is incredibly hard to find, its a place you probably will enter only wandering into it. Packed EALY on a Saturday night, I had very high hopes. The place looks old and has some character which is charming. However, the beer list is pretty short and full of regulars you can get at any beer. The place is smokey, loud, and there is really no reason to be here when you can be at quieter places that offer the same stuff. The location is cool because its down this alley and also doubles as a theater.

Don't seek out but if you're walking the sides streets after dinner or coming from the market, stop in for a quick peak.

Photo of ViveLaChouffe
3.93/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Visited 10/2008

From the Grand Place, a series of narrow alleys take you to Toone, a combination cafe and marionette theatre. Toone is sizable, three distinct rooms and far more seating than you would expect from the outside. We took a seat in the second room that housed the marionette stage itself. The place looks well worn and cozy. It's near the Grand Place and there were plenty of tourists in there ordering tables full of Kwak in the coachman's glass.

The beer list...was not that impressive to me. Outside of Cantillon, there wasn't a lot that was going to rock your world...lots of Inbev brews. I had a lot of lambic earlier that day so I went with a Hoegaarden Grand Cru, an old favorite. My buddy got a Leffe Radieusse. The Grand Cru was as good as ever. The Leffe Radieusse was a bit hot in my opinion.

A bit smoky but the service is good and it's got a unique atmosphere. Worth a visit if you're near the Grand Place but expect a good, not great, beer list.

Photo of kwdavis
4.26/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

The Toone bar is a unique Belgian experience. I know of no other Bar/Puppet Theater. There are two ways into the bar. One can enter a few doors up from the Beer Temple or off of Rue de Bouchers (where all the restaurant guys yell at passersby). Walking in you can tell that the place is old and has a definite character. The walls are covered with beer signs and puppets. I have never seen the puppet show and don't really care to. That said it is a good place to stop for a beer or two in the afternoon.
The place consists of three small rooms. The bar sits in one, the puppet theater sits in the middle and the non-smoking area is in the third. The bar is well stocked by most standards but about average for Belgium. There are Trappist, lambics, and all the usual suspects. I normally grab a Kwak or an Orval while my wife will get a ST Louis Peach. Service has always been friendly and prompt.
The place is near the Grand Place and not far from the Delirium. However, it does not have the crowds of the other two locations. If you are looking for a quick beer in a unique setting this is the place.

Photo of indiapaleale
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This place is right in the heart of all the touristy stuff in Brussels, only a few doors down from de Bier Tempel.

If I had paid the 10 euro to see the actual puppet show that takes place I think I would probably rate this place higher but as I didn't see a puppet show worth 10 euros I have to rate it purely on the beer I had out in the courtyard.

Cool little place that is down in alleyway off the main strip in Brussels...yes, where the puppet shows are...at 4 and 8 pm on Saturdays.

Service was okay, people were pretty busy running about and there were a number of kids running around as well. I felt for our waitress.

Had a bottle of Duchesse de Bourgogne, it was served in that oh so lovingly Belgian way...correct glass and display of the bottle. Loved it. However the prices are a bit high here due to its location and possible post-puppet show crowd...

We didn't try the food so i can't rate that one. I actually didn't see much food on the other tables so I can't say anything about it to be honest. The beer selection is decent with a smattering of Cantillon beers.

Photo of LauraAndrew
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This is the first Belgian puppet bar that I've ever been been to.

Close to the Grand Place, down the narrow alleyways filled with those restaurants that have crazy waiters yelling at you to come in and eat is Toone. It won't be hard to miss if you just look up. We passed it several times until we noticed a huge banner hanging over the alley with an arrow directing you to the entrance. Yes, it's an actual puppet theater and bar. There are 3 rooms, we sat in the first room. This is where the cash register is, so you're sure not to be abandoned by the wait staff (which can tend to happen in Brussels, I have found). There was a nice, big fireplace in the room and crazy puppets hanging from the ceiling. There's a really great vibe here, old brick work on the walls and huge wooden beams holding up the plank ceiling that looks like it's been there for centuries. The walls are also decorated with advertisements for the various puppet shows that the place puts on. Honestly, I don't get the whole puppet thing... we didn't happen to be there during one of the shows, and I was kind of thankful for that. I was just fine sipping my Rochefort 8 while my wife enjoyed a Mort Subte Kriek. Not a huge list of beers but, come on, back home this lineup would blow away pretty much any bar in my town. Go here, you'll like it.

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.76/5  rDev -6.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Three rooms, each different, yet very 'the same'. I have sat in each of them and the one with the bar is the best for me.

This review is of a lunchtime to early evening session between Christmas and New year, December 2007. The guy behind the bar could cope, but the only waitress couldn't, too many parties of people with children who were visiting the Christmas Markets. The poor lass was rushed off her feet.

Draught Kwak is the reason I come here, not the sinister looking puppets that hang by their necks from the ceilling. Nor the weird middle room with its raised staged seating and little lit-up box thing/puppet stage. The third room is just a wooden square, so I don't sit in there unless I have too.

Day time, it seems full of people with children (not just this time), in the evening it changes. The children are taken away (by the puppets maybe?), as are their parents. A younger set arrive without kids and the whole place is transfixed, it becomes noisier and busier, luckily there are more staff too.

If you like your bars down an alley then this is for you, otherwise use the mainstream bars in the city.

BH.

Photo of BlindPig
4.43/5  rDev +10.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5

Like all the other reviews have said, it is a very interesting atmosphere in here. I would recommend seeking it out and having a look for yourself. I have been to a lot of bars and pubs in my life time but I was just fascinated by this place. Just even the building it's in is amazing. It is a smaller bar with puppets hanging from the ceiling. In the other room there is a puppet show but when I went in it wasn’t on and I didn’t make it to see it that night. The beer selection isn’t to great but it is alright. The guy helping people was very friendly and didn't speak much English at all (I think this is a pretty big Flemish bar?) but he did his best to understand me and I always got what I was going for. I really loved this bar the only thing I have a tiny little problem with it is I wish it had a little bit better beer selection. Other than that I love this place.

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

Toone actually has two entrances and both just happen to be down alleys. We found one while walking and used it, it comes through a nice courtyard where you can be served and then goes inside. The other is just an alley and then puts you near the bar. We opted for the courtyard seating and settled in for a vat. It was Saturday and you could hear a band playing in the street outside.

I went inside to get the waiter and he passed me on the way out and as I got back to the table he took the order. In a flash he returned with the drafts. The beer list was not long but it did seem to be well chosen and with very reasonable prices.

Be sure if you go to venture inside to see the puppet theater. Shows happen a few times a day we were told.

I'd go back to Toone, no doubt!

Visited on September 16, 2006.

Photo of jasonm
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

A place I never would have found without Beerfly, and Im glad I did find it. Its tucked back in an alley off the racous Rue des Bouchers, full of waiters beconing you to their resturants. You may be able to spot the various signs near the Grand Place on Rue de aux Marches directing you to the Toone theater, follow those.

The atmosphere is incredible. Marionettes, brick walls, old show posters on the walls, a firepit. The stage in the middle room with a muskateer puppetshow. As stated by others, clientle seemed to be a good mix of tourists and locals.

The beer selection is solid, the prices are extremely reasonable, with most bottles costing 3 euros (and 2,50 euro for kwak on draft!). They had 4 beers on tap and about 30 bottles.

The one guy working the place did fairly well to keep up with crowd and was helpful in breaking my 50 euro bill (why do the damn cash machines in europe give out money in large bills???).

I didnt have any food, the menu looked like it just had a couple of items, such as frites and a croque-monseur sandwich.

Definitely worth checking out, my only regret was not bringing my camera with me.

Photo of Dukeofearl
4.29/5  rDev +7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This is a MUST-GO for any American (and quite possibly for people of other cultures as well, but I can't speak for them) just to experience an atmosphere so different from our freeway-induced-mcdonald's-starbucks-monopoly-every-mall-in-america-has-the-same-crap atmosphere. A small bar that supports the local puppet theatre, in a building hundreds of years old down an alley off a pedestrian street a few blocks from the Grand Place- this place is amazing. I got to town (Brussels) a few days before I was to meet some others, so I had some time on my own, and I followed at least part of GreenCard's Walking Lambic Tour, and this was one of the highlights, I only stopped for one beer (Cantillon Gueuze, thank you very much!) and I just sat back and soaked up atmosphere. Three rooms with faded wallpaper/paint, puppet stages on one wall with folded up bleacher seats on the other, old newspaper articles on the wall talking about the puppetry. Small groups of locals quietly having a drink and talking about life. I can feel the atmosphere just sitting here! I really want to go back again...

Photo of Goldorak
3.93/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Just under the famous puppet theatre, this bar, like many I've seen in Brussels, is comprised of an amalgam of small separate rooms that seemed to have been put together randomly, don't look alike at all, all seem a million years old, don't match but somehow complete each other well. We went through what I think is the side entrance, via the rue du Marché aux Herbes, and sat in the "main room", where the Beer fridges and cash register is.

Our waiter seemed to be chatting on the computer or playing video games or whatever, but quickly came and took our order, brought us our Beers and sat right back at the 'puter. A nice choice of Trappists and a few Lambics were available.

You can buy either a puppet head, at a pricey 75 euro, or a whole doll with costume at a whoping 350 euro and up, complete with certificate of authenticity. I'll stick to a few Beers, thanks!

I really liked this place, it sort of had that bohemian, artsy café, laid back feel, but with decades upon decades of history behind it.

Photo of francisweizen
4.09/5  rDev +2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

This is a strange puppet theatre/restaurant/bar located right off of the grand palace (look for the sign!), and towards the excellent delirium cafe. I did not go upstairs to see the theatre performance, so I can not comment on the quality of the entertainment. However, the bar/restaurant part of this place was awesome. Beautiful, old woodwork, strange bleachers, puppet memorabilia, and more. The clientele is made up of die-hard locals and tourists from all-over-the-world...snapping pics and taking videos. On my last visit the resident, orange-and-white, cat, jumped into my lap, and purred at me for a while...I enjoyed that very much...As for the selection it was normal for a bar in Brussels. Trappists, lambics, and some more obscure local beers. I opted for a glass of port, and I believe that Erica got a Kwak. The beverages came fast, but when we wanted to pay the bill, we had to wait a while to get the waiters attention. It should be noted that he was the only person on duty at the time, and the place was a bit full. Highly recommended for the atmosphere alone. Have a nice beer or a glass of wine, and watch the hours slip away...

Photo of frank4sail
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

WOW talk about a place with character. The place is quite hard to find but once you get there is is another world. Once you walk down that ally and enter the Toone you really forget the tourist grind in seconds. The awesome wood work in this bar takes you back in time to Brussels in the early 18th century. Wood tables and puppets dominate the several cave like rooms. A funky feeling will come over you as you sit back and enjoy a quality beer poured properly in the correct glass by attentive (french speaking) staff. Good music was also playing during our afternoon visit. The beer list is not huge but very solid with lots of Trappist selections and all beer at about 3$ euro. A very relaxing break from the city. Not much of a food menu just light snacks. A must stop in Brussels. One of the most interesting bars I have ever been in..

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.93/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

From the corner exit of the Brussels Central Station, turn left & head downhill as though you are heading towards the Grand Place. Eventually you will come to Grassmarkt and go past the Information Centre on your left, then take your first right before you reach Rue March aux Herbes. This is Petite Rue des Bouchers, a small, often crowded, alleyway full of Seafood Restaurants & Waiters vociferously plying their trade and attempting to entice you into their establishment rather than the one next door. Ignore them all, by looking up, for about half-way down on the right, you will see a small break between two buildings and a sign above that simply says Toone. When you see it you have reached what appears to be a rather grubby looking thin alleyway. Walk right down here to the end, honest!! At the end are two doors, the one on the left leads to the Toone Puppet Theatre, the one on the right to the unique Toone Bar.
As you enter there is a small raised cramped wooden seating area to your immediate left, the very small 2 person bar is to your front left and there is a small seating area to your right. If this area is full, walk straight forward through the doorway near the bar into the next backroom, this is in fact the location of another small Theatre on the left, note the sliding seats to your right folded away. The bar is a den of adjoining rooms; the bare-brick walls, wood panelling & fittings give this place a real natural cozy feeling. All the time, hanging Puppets are everywhere staring at you, as well as Adverts & Old Posters for the puppet Theatre.
Beer list was 44 when I was last there in Nov. ’02. Small-ish, but a very good list so close to Tourist land; including Cantillon, all the Chimays, Westmalle’s, Orval and Rochefort 10 as well, all reasonably priced. Beer list does alter, so ignore the chalkboard to your left as you walk in, and get hold of a printed beer menu. Has a very ‘warm’ and friendly feeling. Service is great, but unhurried.

If you can find this Bar, and it does take some finding at first, it is well worth the effort, a lovely unique refuge probably because of its hidden locale. So escape the Grand Place, the throngs of Tourists and come and have a quiet quality beer in Pinocchio’s world. No food. If you want to eat, it’s back outside into the street, to face the hoarde’s of fish restaurant waiters shouting at you again, I’m afraid.
I’d stay here and have another beer, otherwise, if you're hungry - best of luck!!!

Toone in Brussels, Belgium
90 out of 100 based on 17 ratings.