The 5 best restaurants for local atmosphere in Brussels

1) Les Brigittines

This stylish restaurant stands opposite the church where Pieter Bruegel was buried. The interior is decorated in a warm style, with mirrors, paintings and art nouveau lamps. The cook uses the best local ingredients, including Cantillon beer.

Restaurant interior of Les Brigittines

2) Le Chou de Bruxelles

This friendly little restaurant in a quiet residential street is a good bet if you want traditional Belgian cuisine. The lamb is succulent, the frites are served in a paper cone, and the Zeeland mussels come with a choice of 30 different sauces. The place is always busy and staff occasionally struggle to cope with all the tables.

terrace of Le Chou de Bruxelles

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3) La Branche d'Olivier

This rustic restaurant lies hidden down a quiet cobbled lane on the edge of a nature reserve. You can dine in the wood-panelled interior or outside on the terrace when the weather allows. The menu is fantastic value for Brussels, although you might have to factor in a taxi fare.

interior of La Branche d'Olivier

4) La Bonne Chère

Hidden down a cobbled lane in the Marolles, this intimate bistro opened in 2020. It’s a relaxed, romantic place with exposed brick walls and velvet curtains. The enthusiastic young team create an inspiring menu using seasonal ingredients.

Brussels - La Bonne Chère exterior

5) Houtsiplou

This is a friendly, relaxed restaurant with authentic Brussels charm. A great place to go with kids: its walls are decorated with quirky comic-book murals illustrating episodes from Belgian history. The cooking is Belgian style with classics likemoules-frites, beef stewed in Belgian beer and saucisse-stoemp (sausage with mashed potatoes). The menu lists interesting Belgian beers, along with Belgian Cécémel(chocolate milk) for the young ones.

colourful wall at Houtsiplou

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