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Belgium In Brussels This Weekend

Discussion in 'Europe' started by CapitalGains, Aug 1, 2012.

  1. Hello everyone

    I'll be visiting Brussels this weekend for the first time. I've scoped out the places I'd like to visit (based on various recommendations), so I was wondering if any of you had feedback on my itinerary or if they is anything I should consider/change.

    I am flying from Zurich to Brussels, arriving at 18:05 on Friday, Aug 3. My hotel is pretty much in the city center square as far as I can tell...about a two minute walk from Delirium Cafe according to Google Maps.

    Friday: By the time I get to the hotel and settled I imagine it'll be at least 19:30-20:00. Friday night I'll plan on going to Moeder Lambic Fontainas (open until 2:00) and possibly Delirium Cafe.

    Saturday: Ideally I'd like to go to 3F in Beersel and also Cantillon at the minimum. In a perfect world I'd like to check out DHVL, but that seems a little off the beaten path. My initial plan is to try to train/bus it over to 3F earlier in the day when it opens (around 10:30). I'd come back from 3F and head over to Cantillon to ensure I get there around 14:30, as it closes at 17:00. For the rest of the evening I'm not entirely sure...maybe check out Bier Circus and/or Délices Et Caprices.

    Sunday: I have be out of my hotel at 11:00 and my return flight to Zurich isn't until 18:40. I'll have checked out most of the places I'd like to at this point assuming everything goes to plan (based on the above), but I'm open to other suggestions.

    That being said, I have a couple of questions:

    - Are there preferred places to buy bottles in Belgium to bring back home? I will be returning to Zurich through the end of August, but flying back home to Portland, OR in the end. I'm checking a bag on the flight so hopefully I can pass through a decent amount of bottles. Does the 3F location sell any of the Armand'4s this time of year? I'm looking to bring some goods back to the States when I return.

    - Would you switch the above itinerary around at all? It's definitely open to change, but that's what I could build based on what I've read.

    Thanks in advance for your input!
  2. deeblo

    deeblo Aficionado (240) United Kingdom (England) Dec 17, 2011 Verified

    Bier Tempel and Beer Planet are shops in the center of Brussels with decent selections but may be a bit pricey. Bottles at Cantillon and 3F are much cheaper but I dunno exactly what they'll have in stock when you're there.

    Also check out Moeder Lambic St. Gilles. And in case you weren't aware, Delirium will be pretty wild on a Friday night. Loud music, dancing, and young people getting wasted. Not your typical beer bar atmosphere though upstairs is more chill.
  3. Thanks for the tips. I've heard that about the Delirium Cafe, which makes me think I might try going there on Sunday in the afternoon. I've heard it's a little less obnoxious during the day, relatively speaking.
  4. Less obnoxious but still pretty bad. Honestly I wouldn't waste time with Delirium. There are a tons of places that are so much better and nowhere near as touristy or frat boyish.

    Beer Circus and Moder Lambic are my two faves in Brussels. Moder Lambic is open very late BTW. I got there at midnight on my last visit.
    LambicKing likes this.
  5. Tut

    Tut Savant (495) New York Sep 23, 2004

    I agree completely with tendermorsel. Don't waste your time with the drunken tourists in Delirium.

    Here are some of my favorite cafes and restaurants in Brussels. Get a good street map. Check opening hours - many places close early part of week. Have fun and explore.


    le Bier Circus
    57 Rue de l'Enseignement
    One of the best beer lists at 200+. Spend an evening at the small bar in the back and ask owner Patrick for recommendations. Check hours, closed Sun., Mon.

    42 Rue Sainte-Catherine
    Classic old brown cafe near city center but away from tourists. Great at night but pm good too.

    la Fleur en Papier Dore
    55 Rue des Alexiens
    old, historic small cafe that is only place in city with Oud Beersel Lambic. Amazing interior.

    170 Rue Blaes
    Great cafe in Marolles area that specializes in lambics. Great atmosphere.

    l'Ultime Atome
    14 Rue Saint Boniface(Ixelles district)
    See my review. Ignore most recent review. go in late pm or evening.

    Cafe Belga
    Place Eugene Flagey(Ixelles)

    Restaurants with beer cuisine:

    le Brassins
    36 Rue Keyenveld(Ixelles)
    Amazing, reasonably priced, food and good beer list. Can walk to/from l'Ultime Atome.

    32 Rue des Renards
    Great funky atmosphere and fantastic food. Deserts are excellent. Afterward you can walk down street a couple blocks to Brocante.
  6. ImperialStoat

    ImperialStoat Savant (335) Ireland May 20, 2009

    I'm gonna' have to go and reprimand you for not mentioning the Poechenellekelder.
    Dennoman likes this.
  7. LambicKing

    LambicKing Advocate (675) Florida Apr 13, 2011

    I like the recommendations for Moeder Lambic and Bier Circus...and against Delirium, although I suppose Delirium is worth a visit to simply "check the block", but it's quite the annoyance (especially in the late evening hours) IMO.

    Don't forget A La Bécasse...really nice quiet place with great brews. Lambics served out of traditional pitchers.

    By all means, go to 3F and Cantillon. Assuming your limited timeline and subsequent radius of travel, I don't see any place else selling more of their beers than the breweries themselves.
  8. First up on saturday morning I would check out Delirium. You will have the place to your self. For lunch check out Cirio and try the chicken waterzooi. I agree with lambicKing about La Becasse, also close by are Au Bon Vieux Temps and L'Imaige de Nostre Dame. As mentioned, Poechenellekelder is worth a visit, along with A La Mort Subite. Toone, just off the grand place, is an interesting place for a quick one.....its a puppet theater.

  9. I also forgot about the Poechenellekelder my bad. That is a solid spot for sure. Nothing gets me thirsty more than the Mannquin Piss and it is right accross the street!
    jazzyjeff13 likes this.
  10. Tut

    Tut Savant (495) New York Sep 23, 2004

    Guys, I disagree about Poechenellekelder. While they have a fairly decent beer list, it's not as good as Moeder Lambic or le Bier Circus, among others. My biggest problem with it is the fact that it's crowded with all the tourists that swarm around the silly pissing boy statue across the street. For most of them, it's just a convenient place for refreshments after posing for stupid pictures in front of the little pisser. Many don't even order beer. I prefer cafes where most of the customers are Belgians and avoid tourist areas/places as much as possible. With only a weekend available and so many great, non-touristy cafes in Brussels, I don't see any reason to bother with Poechenellekelder.
  11. To each his own... I have been there 2-3 times and for me it is a quick good spot to stop in after checking out the peeing baby:) They have a lot of "common" beers I have been able to order some pretty rare stuff there too (50N 4E comes to mind).

    Don't get me wrong I would choose Moder Lambic 100 times over but it is not a bad place to stop in for a quick beer IMHO especially if you are in the area.
  12. Tut

    Tut Savant (495) New York Sep 23, 2004

    Seriously, you go to see the pissing statue every time you're in Brussels??:) Why would anyone want to see it more than once?:confused:
  13. Franch

    Franch Advocate (600) New York Mar 22, 2011 Verified

    don't. skip. DHVL.