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Bruges & Brussels

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Brussels, Belgium
This is a weekend dedicated to Belgian beers. Small and big breweries present their beer on the Grand-Place. The entrance is free, the tastings have to be paid. And if you are not a beer fan, go for the amazing, fresh oysters sold by different...
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Grote Zavel, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
For a great shopping experience, provided that you have a wallet full of Euros, is the Sablon area of Brussels. Other than the art galleries and cafes and restaurants, you can catch the brocante, or flea market, in the square. The photo is of a...
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Rue Gheude 56, 1070 Anderlecht, Belgium
No trip to Belgium is complete without experiencing the Belgian beer culture. The best place in Brussels to take a look at beer history is the Cantillon Brewery. Even as a non beer drinker, it’s a fascinating place to visit. One of the things that...
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Brugge, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
Across the street from the Sint-Salvatorskathedraal (St. Salvator Cathedral) you'll find this little shop that serves traditional belgian fries, brochettes, croquettes, fish sandwiches, and grilled meats on a stick. Grab your food and a Belgian...
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Place Poelaert 1, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Visiting a country's Supreme Court may not rank high on your list of things to do, particularly when the building in question has been covered in scaffolding for almost 10 years. Brussels' Palace of Justice (Palais du Justice) has been mired in...
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Rue du Marché aux Poulets 41, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
You may think you have had great fish and chips but until you go to Bia Mara, in Brussels, you have not! I used to think that in order to get great, authentic food I had to go to England and we did a couple of times since it's so close. But since...
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1000 Brussels, Belgium
This weekend, for the first time ever in Brussels, the Food Truck Festival is taking place. Today I spent almost all day there trying the food from the trucks lined up on the side of the main train station in Brussels. One of the trucks is...
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Rue Saint-Boniface 35, 1050 Bruxelles, Belgium
How could anyone go to Brussels and NOT have moules-frites? I'm pretty sure it's a requirement. At least it was for me. After doing some extensive research on Chowhound and the New York Times, I discovered Au Vieux Bruxelles and made it my mission...
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Rue Antoine Dansaert 20, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If you get tired of French-Belgian food and would like to try something a little different in Brussels, head to La Kasbah. Just a few minutes walk from Grand Place, on the trendy Rue Antoine Dansaet, La Kasbah will transport you all the way to...
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Place de la Vieille Halle aux Blés 37, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
When visitors to Belgium ask me what to eat here (besides the inevitable chocolate, waffles and frites), my reply is always stoofvlees (unless they are vegetarians!). Stoofvlees, or carbonnade a la Flamande as it’s called in French, literally...
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Bruges, Belgium
I love this view of Brugges taken from my climb up the Belfry. The entire city is like a fairytale city. Yes there are a lot of tourists, but go for the lace, chocolates, beer. I've never seen such a pretty city before. It's an easy train ride...
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Place des Palais 7, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Place Royal is a busy spot in Brussels. Tourists queue up for the many museums, office-workers bustle back and forth from their cubicles, cars zip around the roundabout and, trams rumble through the middle. All the while, few know that beneath the...
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Rue de l'Enseignement 57, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If you want a Belgian Beer experience that doesn’t involve crowds of drunken stag-parties and tourists, head to the Bier Circus. Brussels beer aficionados head here to find rare Belgian beers and traditional dishes like Stoofvlees (beef stewed in...
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Grand Place 1, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Besides the amazing food and drinks that you can enjoy in many Belgian restaurants, the decorations are fascinating too. Some of them are simply awesome—like the Roy D'Espagne in Grand Place, Brussels. I had some great mussels in a fabulous...
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Square Ambiorix 11, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
For an exceptional look at one of Brussels’ finest Art Nouveau buildings, head to the Maison St. Cyr. This ornate, narrow house was designed by Belgian architect, Gustave Strauven, who worked for the father of Art Nouveau, Victor Horta, from the...
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Rue Montagne de la Cour 2, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
My favourite building in Brussels is the Old England on Mont des Arts, just around the corner from Place Royal. It’s a striking concoction of steel and glass in the Art Nouveau style Brussels is so famous for. But what’s on the inside is just as...
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Rue du Marché Aux Herbes 120, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Hot dogs aren't normally what come to mind when you think of a healthy snack, but Hop Dog is trying to change that perception. This little take-away, nestled in one of the pedestrian streets near Grand Place in central Brussels is bringing new...
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Markt 7, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
I was told that I HAD to go to Bruges, it was a non-negotiable, must-see. I watched the movie In Bruges on my way there and decided that I had to go up to the top of the famous bell tower. It was way more than I bargained for as I was pretty sure...
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Impasse de la Fidélité 4, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If you're in Brussels and like beer, I mean all kinds of beer, then the Delirium Cafe is the place for you! The cafe is somewhat tucked away in the restaurant section of the city, just off of the grand place. The short walk is worth it and while...
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Rue Ravenstein 23, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
My sister and I ducked into Brussels' Bozar museum to seek refuge from the rain and noticed that the lobby was littered with scattered pieces of hanging blue film. We were intrigued as to the meaning of the unlikely art installation and were...
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Ravensteingalerij 25, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
If you’re looking for a slightly more alternative tour of Brussels, designed for young people (and those of us who are still young at heart), make your way to Saint Catherine’s Square and visit the Use-It office for a free map. Use-It offices are...
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Place Sainte-Catherine 5/7, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
There are a few great options for dining on Place St. Catherine, in Brussels. However, when people ask me where to go for great seafood in Brussels, Jaloa, and their more casual Jaloa Brasserie, are first on the list. Jaloa itself is elegant fine...
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Onze-Lieve-Vrouwvoorplein, 1020 Brussel, Belgium
The recently restored church of Our Lady of Laeken is located near the Royal Residence. This ornate cathedral was built by King Leopold I, in memory of his wife, Queen Louise-Marie to honor her wish to be buried in Laeken. The Church was designed...
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Brussels, Belgium
I professed my love for Bia Mara before . For us, no trip to Brussels goes without eating here. Cheap and OMG good. After you have their gourmet fish and chips you will be hooked. Try it with minty mushy peas or garlic truffle sauce, home made...
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Katelijnestraat 5, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
When in Belgium, make sure to try not only the famous chocolates, but also the hot chocolate! During a tour of Bruges, we became so enchanted with the medieval city that we decided to sneak away from our tour group and explore on our own—and I'm...
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Mariastraat 20, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
Chocolate is everywhere in Belgium and especially in Bruges but it can get really expensive. If you do not want to spend a fortune but still want to try delicious treats, these chocolate covered marshmallows from Depla Chocolaterie are the perfect...
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Dijver 12, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
The Groeningemuseum is a compact and concise gallery in the heart of Bruges. The visual overview of Dutch art and some spectacular pieces make this museum worth the visit. The highlight of the collection is Jan van Eyck's "The Madonna and Child...
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Sint-Salvatorskoorstraat 8, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
The Sint-Salvator Cathedral is one of the cathedrals of Bruges.
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Mariastraat 38, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
Sivan Askayo visited Flanders as a guest of Visit Flanders. For a small city, Bruges has quite a lot of museums (16). I ended up visiting the Memling Museum, also known as Sint Jan Hospital Museum. The museum has six paintings by Hans Memling, a...
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Wijngaardstraat 16, 8000 Brugge, Belgium
Sivan Askayo visited Flanders as a guest of Visit Flanders. The Flemish beguinages are a unique testimony to the medieval “women’s” movement in Flanders. Beguines were “religious women” either widowed or older unmarried women who wished to live an...
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Rue au Beurre 31, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Maison Dandoy has been baking delicious treats in Brussels since 1829 and you'll find their famous shops scattered around Brussels. Step inside, and you'll be greeted by the sights and smells of crunchy biscuits (cookies) looking much as they have...
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1000 Brussels, Belgium
The Grand Place in Brussels is the magnificent main square in Brussels. The square is the main tourist attraction in Brussels and is surrounded by numerous cafes and shops. Most of the buildings were constructed in the late 17th century, although...
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Brussels, Belgium
If you are on a diet do not come to Belgium because sights like this one are everywhere. But if you are a chocolate lover, then this is the place for you! Everywhere you turn there are amazing chocolate stores that look just sooo good. They have...
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Rue Sainte-Catherine 34, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
I feel like I found the only good bakery in Brussels, located in the “unofficial” Chinatown near the Ste. Catherine neighborhood. Boulangerie Charli had me drooling the first time I walked passed its display window, full of rustic sandwiches,...
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Eugène Flageyplein, 1050 Elsene, Belgium
Every neighbourhood in Brussels has a street market at least once a week. They vary in size but most have a mix of local produce, baked goods, cheap clothing and household goods. Most have at least a couple of street food options, usually...
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Galerie du Roi 5, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
The Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert is one of the oldest covered shopping arcades in Europe. This upscale shopping mall is located just opposite the Grand Place and is a beautiful place to window shop. Inside you will find jewellery, handbags, a...
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Sint-Katelijneplein 50, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
One of my favorite European habits that I can never get enough of is the café culture. It is the first day this spring where it is warm enough to sit outside, and every café table is filled. There must be some unwritten rule that says if it is...
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Brussels, Belgium
Brussels has a vibrant art scene with hundreds of small galleries scattered throughout the city. It can be hard to know where to begin and can feel intimidating if you aren't an art expert. Enter Brussels Art Walks—guided tours of several of the...
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Nestled on the corner of Rue Blaes and Rue Notre-Seigneur, in the Marolles, is a cosy little secret of in-the-know foodies. It’s called L’Idiot du Village, but even the village idiot will tell you, it’s worth finding this little restaurant. While...
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Rue Antoine Dansaert, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Sivan Askayo visited Flanders as a guest of Visit Flanders. I love it when I can find almost everything I need on one street. Rue Antoine Dansaert is that kind of place. This chic boulevard buzzes with creativity from almost every boutique or...
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Rue Ravenstein 23, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
My sister is a modern dancer in Brussels. We were strolling the streets of Brussels searching for the perfect cup of hot chocolate during one of my visits when we were hit by a sudden downpour of rain. We sought refuge in the nearby Bozar Museum,...
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Rue Sainte-Catherine 36, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If you’re searching for the best gourmet offerings from Europe’s forests and fields, don’t miss the Champigros shop near Place Saint Catherine, in Brussels. The shop’s name comes from a combination of the French words “champignons grossiste,” or...
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1020 Brussels, Belgium
Located at the foot of the Atomium, Mini Europe is the only park where you can have a tour around Europe in a few short hours. A truly unique voyage ! Stroll amid the typical ambiance of the most beautiful towns of the Old Continent.
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Wolvengracht 32, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
For an elegant yet trendy meal in Brussels, featuring great Belgian ingredients, a visit to Belga Queen is a must. This restaurant is in a stunning setting, inside a former bank. The period features of the bank remain, but are contrasted by modern...
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Square de l'Atomium, 1020 Bruxelles, Belgium
I wasn't sure what to think when I first saw a picture of the Atomium in a Belgium guidebook, but it turned out to be one of the coolest kitschy tourist attractions I've ever visited. The Atomium was built for the World's Fair hosted by Brussels...
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Rue de la Régence 3, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
One of many reasons to visit Brussels, my beloved former home, is the Magritte Museum near Place Royale, opened in 2009. Inside is a wonderful and expansive collection of the Belgian's work, but outside, my daughter and I found the windows were...
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Rue Ravenstein 2D, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
After walking around Brussels all day we stopped at Laurent Gerbaud Chocolaterie for a little sweet pick-me-up. The new things on the menu were the sorbets, so of course I wanted to try them. I chose the mango cilantro (coriander) one and I was...
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Brussels, Belgium
Belgian Chocolates are not just ordinary chocolates but they are a tradition. For over a hundred years, the Belgians have been experimenting and offering the best gourmet chocolates to the world. I was in Brussels for a day and I spent most of the...
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Grote Markt 21/22, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
Perhaps the most famous chocolate maker from Belgium, and also world famous is Godiva Chocolatier. The company was founded in Belgium but don't let the fact that it is now a Turkish owned chocolatier put you off because everything that they make...
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Rue Baron Horta 3, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Brussels' BOZAR museum is well worth visiting for its excellent art exhibitions, concerts, and events, like TEDex Brussels. But it’s also worth visiting for its gastronomic restaurant, the BOZAR Brasserie, headed by chef David Martin. The menu...
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Grasmarkt Straat 39, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
If you’re looking for gifts for the little ones in your life (or you just want to relive your own childhood) don’t miss the beautiful Grasshopper toy store in central Brussels. This store is a warren of high-end toys for all age levels. Upstairs,...
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10 Parc du Cinquantenaire, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
The Cinquantenaire Museum, located right beside Brussels’ iconic triumphal arch, is one of the best ‘hidden gem’ museums of the city. This museum of civilizations is part of the Royal Museums of Art and History. Permanent collections include...
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Rue de l'Eglise 112, 1150 Woluwe-Saint-Pierre, Belgium
If you still need a gift for that one person on your shopping list who doesn’t eat chocolate, head to one of the many Maison Dandoy cookie shops dotted around Brussels. Dandoy is a Belgian institution and they have been making cookies in Brussels...
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Grand Place, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
The Brussels City Museum is located inside the Maison du Roi (or King’s house), the dark grey, Gothic building on Grand Place. Once the home of the baker’s guild, it is also known as the Broodhuis, in Flemish. These days, this beautiful building...
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Paleizenplein 7, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
Most visitors to Brussels (and even many locals) don’t know much about Belgian history. Despite the country’s relatively short (by European standards) existence, it has a fascinating story. You can learn all about it in the small and interactive...
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1000 Brussels, Belgium
I am amazed at the variety and detail if the architecture in Brussels. Even in the center of the city, in one place, you an spend hours marveling at the workmanship in front of you. You need hours to explore less than 1 square mile!
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Rue Léopold 3, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Cooks and foodies shouldn’t miss the International Home of Cooking in Brussels. Here you can find every gadget and gizmo you’ve ever wanted for your kitchen (and some you didn’t even know you wanted). You can find everything from high-quality chef...
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Rue des Sablons 11, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
I must be the last person in the world who did not know about Le Pain Quotidien chain of restaurants, but I am happy I discovered it. A friend told me all about the wonderful tartines and salads and I was definitely in. I love everything about...
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Rue Henri Maus 19, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Built in 1886 as a couple of houses, the buildings were bought and then refurbished by Mr. Houbbion, who often worked with Victor Horta. The building is full of art nouveau motifs and the front windows are what first catches your eye as they are...
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Rue de la Vierge Noire 2, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If you love all things Asian, don’t miss the quirky, chaotic Kam-Yuen Supermarket, near Place Saint Catherine, in Brussels. Duck under the giant purple and green KY sign (trying not to snicker at the unfortunate initials) and dive into the most...
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Rue des Alexiens 67, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
It may not look like much from outside, but the Porte Noir (the Black door) is one of Brussels best spots to see live music. Enter past the wrought iron dragon, descend into the cellar of this Celtic pub, and sample from the extensive Belgian beer...
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Rue Haute, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If chain stores aren’t your cup of shopping tea, head to the quirky boutiques of the Marolles neighbourhood in Brussels. The main shopping street is Rue Haute (high street) and it’s lined with vintage shops, antique stores, and home decor shops...
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Rue d'Arenberg 1B, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
L’Arcadie is one of the only exceptions to the "don’t eat near Grand Place" rule in Brussels. Located at the end of the Galleries Saint Hubert covered shopping arcade, this café is always packed with both tourists and Brussels locals. The pasta...
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Rue des Sablons, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
While Brussels Sablon Square is most famous for shopping (especially if you are in the market for Belgian chocolate) it’s well worth visiting the pretty church at the top of the triangle. The Église Notre Dame du Sablon (Church of Our Lady of...
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Rue Le Titien 30, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
If you love to BBQ or are just a fan of a really great steak, Jack O’Shea’s butcher shop in the EU Quarter of Brussels is like a candy-shop for carnivores. This is the Brussels location of the famous London butchers and it’s a one-stop shop for...
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Brussels, Belgium
We went to Brussels the other day and finally went inside of Rose de Damas Patisserie. It's a Middle Eastern place that has the most mouth watering deserts on display. Until that day we always looked and never seem to have the time to go inside....
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Louizalaan, Brussel, Belgium
Serious fashion shoppers should head to Avenue Louise for all of the top brands in luxury shopping. You’ll find all of the big European brands here but some local Belgian designers as well. In addition to fashion you can also find high-end house...
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Brussels, Belgium
The Mont des Arts offers one of Brussels' most amazing views. From the elevated vantage point, the famous tower of the Brussels Town Hall in the Grand Place is clearly visible and on a clear, sunny day, the Koekelberg Basilica and even the Atomium...
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Rue des Bouchers 18, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Sure, if you're into those black shelled delicacies, then by all means order some moules-frites. For me, I went for the trout with almonds, along with Leon's own brand of beer. There is nothing more Belgian in the culinary world than Chez Leon!
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Passage du N 29, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
When one thought of Belgium, usually beer, chocolate and a little boy taking a pee came to mind. Thanks to Peyo, a comic book aritist/writer, helped along by the cartoons and later a pair of movies, people now think of SMURFS! If you don't know...
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Beenhouwersstraat 18, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
One of the best known restaurants in Belgium, which is actually now a chain, is Chez Leon. They specialize in the famous Belgian dish - moules-frites, which is a giant bowl of mussels served with french fries that should be dipped in mayonnaise....