My brother and I have talked for ages about going on a beer focused trip together. At long last, we’re doing it - we’re going to Brussels for a long weekend in June.
Does anyone have any advice on the best places to see/eat/drink? We enjoy pretty much every type of beer although (and it feels sacrilegious to say it when we’re going to Brussels…) we’re not overly keen on sour beers. Maybe a visit to a Lambic brewery would change that though.
We’re staying at Artistic World (Rue de Soignies 24) so if there are any good places nearby that would be a bonus.
We may head to Bruges, especially as there happens to be a beer festival on when we’re there. Bruges Beer Festival 2023 Belgium - Travel Begins at 40 I went to Bruges about ten years ago and still reminisce about the Tripel from Staminee de Garre, so returning there would be a must!
I’m not sure how we’ll be able to pace ourselves with so many amazing high ABV beers on offer, so any tips from people who have done it before would be most welcome!
For a trip to Brussels, a visit to Cantillon is basically mandatory - even if you don’t like sour beers/lambic. At Cantillon, you can at least buy some beers by the [small] glass, so you don’t need to commit to bottles. And Cantillon is quite centrally located so doesn’t require a massive time commitment. Cantillon opens pretty early in the morning so it’s a nice, beery morning activity. Also good to go early so it’s not as busy.
Nüetnigenough is a great place for a meal and beers.
Cafe La Brocante is a great place for breakfast and beers.
Le Poechenellekelder is a classic place for trying classic Belgian beers.
Moeder Lambic (there are two locations) is great for a big range of beers, including non-Belgian stuff as I recall. Open quite late, so a good spot to end the day.
I haven’t been to Brussels for a couple years, but the above suggestions are based on 5-10 visits during the previous 10 years. I’m sure there are some other excellent places I haven’t mentioned so hopefully others will chime in.
Leighton covered it well there. Another couple I’d add are La Tana, a bar / pasta place with some of the best stocked fridges I’ve seen, and the food is excellent. And L’Ermitage brewery has two spots that are well worth a visit. More hoppy stuff than is the norm over there.
Tbh though, I enjoy just dropping in to random places and enjoying a fresh Orval or bottle of Taras Boulba. You hard pressed to go wrong really.
The public transport system in Brussels is great (as is the train line to Brugge), just make sure you get hold of a good map or app. It took me about four visits before I got the transport around the city fully understood.
Leighton has covered most places, but I also loved Les Brassins, 6 doors away from where Audrey Hepburn was born. Great food and beer list: http://www.lesbrassins.be
Have a great time.
Oh, my suggestion for having a fun time and staying sober is to share beers and only have 3 each in any bar; difficult, but if you want to visit loads of places and remember them it’s just about the only way to do it.