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BELGIUM: Simple, unpretentioius, inexpensive restaurant(s) sought in Brussels, Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent

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Hi, everybody! I'm going to Belgium in March/April and would love to find places to eat without pretension that serve regular Belgian food -- nothing fancy or innovative. While rock bottom cheapness is not necessary, it would be helpful to us. In any case the places I am happiest with usually aren't expensive. Atmosphere is completely unimportant. I would love places that are not frequented by tourists, though I won't have a car to get to them. Any thoughts? I'll be in Brussels, Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent (I speak French but not Flemish if that matters.) Thanks so much!

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  1. In Brussels, I would recommend Brasserie L'ultime Atom on Rue Saint Boniface. Lovely little area (worth discovering), definitely not touristy. Delicious Belgian food, amazing beer selection (I don't drink beer, and this is almost the only place in the world where I slightly regret that). ESSENTIAL to save room for their profiteroles for dessert; they are extraordinary, filled with ice-cream rather than whipped cream and with lashings of hot Belgian chocolate sauce.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Shivaun

      Thanks so much. I don't drink beer (or alcohol) either. But this sounds like a great place.

    2. In Antwerp, I have eaten at A la Ville several times and never been disappointed.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ThomasvanDale

        Thanks, Thomas.

      2. Just back from eating a lovely beef steak with roquefort sauce at Le Corbeau, Rue Saint-Michel, For lunch. I drank my first Gueze there as well. Perfectly prepared although I don't know if the salad would be the same in summer. For lunch, get there no later than quarter after twelve or seating will be an issue.

        3 Replies
        1. re: andrea345

          Thanks, Andrea. I was going to ask if this was in Brussels or one of the other cities I was interested in. But I was able to find it online and learned its Brussels. For anyone else looking at the post, the address is: 18, rue St-Michel
          18, rue St-Michel, 1000 Bruxelles.

          1. re: vulpine

            Sorry! Brussels.

            Eating at Les Brigittienes now. Idiot was fully booked and we prefer to travel WITHOUT reservations. Starters, bread and wine wunnerful so far

            1. re: vulpine

              In Brussels. Also, just finished a spectacular dinner at Les Brigittines. Lovely white wine paired with the sweetbread and chicken dinner.

          2. In Brussels

            Resto Henri
            Bistro Margaux (in Ternat, 15 minutes taxi trip well worth it)

            In Antwerpen

            Mojo Visbistro
            Veranda (book now for April, seriously!)
            Invincible

            In Ghent

            Belfort brasserie
            Vrijmoed (relatively cheap for now, but will soar)

            If you did get an urge for a very fancy and innovative meal, you never know, these things happen, don't forget to look for Benoit Dewitte in Zingem, just 15 minutes south of Ghent.

            And just to reassure you: people in the northern part of Belgium are Flemish, but their language is Dutch. And they are, much more than in Brussels, prone to speak English fluently.

            Enjoy and report back.

            2 Replies
            1. re: hblnk

              Thanks so much! I will definitely let you know.

              1. re: hblnk

                You could also try AUB SVP - it's a nice little restaurant with a constantly refreshing menu. Very well-cooked food!

              2. Ghent: 't Vosken / waffels @ Max
                Antwerp: In de Gloria

                1 Reply
                1. re: currycue

                  Thanks currycure!

                2. In Brusells. I highly recommend Nord Zee for lunch

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: meatnveg

                    Thanks!

                  2. If you want to eat well in Belgium, just stand still and food will come to you. I heard all my life about French food but nothing about Belgian food. In fact, Belgium is one big feed. Every town, crossroads, and rock formation has good restaurants as well as street stands selling fried potatoes, waffles, and chocolates, and sometimes all of the above in combination. And every single thing is delicious.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Querencia

                      I totally agree! Just the sheer volume and variety of locally produced specialty items is astounding. On my last stay in Ghent in April I just discovered Sirop De Liege and Oud Bokrijker cheese. Amazing!

                      1. re: Querencia

                        I so wish the OP would've reported back on where he ended up going.

                        1. re: Querencia

                          I so wish the OP would've reported back on where he ended up gong.