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 Post subject: Brussels?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 3:54 am 
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Ok, I know this is a long shot, but I thought I'd throw it out there and see if anything came back. My partner and I are going to be in Brussels for two nights to celebrate our anniversary next week. Food is an issue for us; between my veganism and his health-related dietary woes, our food preferences are pretty much diametrically opposed. Brussels doesn't seem like the most vegan friendly place in the best of circumstances, but add in his issues, and it seems like a minefield.

I'm really only looking to cover one meal-time. For the most part, I think we'll get a good start at the hotel (which has a supposedly decent continental breakfast included), and I pegged this place, which is right down the road from our hotel, as a good option for a take-away meal for an early evening picnic one of the nights we're there. But since we're celebrating, it would be nice to have at least one sit down dinner that we can both enjoy while we're there. It needs to be near our hotel because he's not able to deal with much walking/commuting after he eats. So, does anyone know of anyplace that's:

1) in or around the area between Central Station and the Grote Markt?
2) is both vegan and omni friendly
3) is not too "exotic" (he's vetoed my suggestion of Ethiopian as he doesn't know how his intestines will react to it).

Like I said, I know it's a long shot, but it would be nice to find a place where we can both enjoy a meal.

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:48 pm 
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Ah! Brussels is a nightmare for vegans indeed, and even for anyone looking for a decent place to eat in the city centre...
Let me think...
I've had a nice seitan curry near the Bourse the other day; would Chinese/thai suit? (it wasn't too spicy, frankly)
What about lebanese?

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:54 pm 
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And at lunchtime I strongly recommend the restaurant green attitude at Musee Belvue: http://www.belvue.be/BELvue/resto.aspx? ... gType=2067
(buffet with serious vegan items, in an adorable garden next to the palais royal!)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:20 pm 
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it's not all that helpful for what you want, but it might be nice. chocolatier Laurent Gerbaud will do you a super rich and decadent hot chocolate. they have other vegan truffles and stuff. it might be an option for a quiet dessert :)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:37 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:45 pm 
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Difficult! Nothing I can recommend personally.

I had dinner at Como como once and was underwhelmed. But that wouldn't be too "exotic" and maybe you'll have a different experience. I like Le Pain Quotidien but that's more lunch-y.

I thought this sounded interesting since I read they try to barely use dairy but after a skimming the menu there still wouldn't be a lot of options for you: http://www.soulresto.com/ . And it looks pricey.

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2012 1:24 am 
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...And ironically it is a special gastronomic year in Brussels -there are ridiculous statues of sprouts, chips and chocolate everywhere!!!!???? (aaaah ahh ahh!)

Other lunch places: AVOID EXKI!!!!... PULP or YUMMY are better -and for a delicious cappuchino there is Natural Caffe (behind Gerbaud, with a nice terrasse viewing on the Kunstberg)

As a proper restaurant with a higher standard I'd give a chance to LOLA on the grote Zavel (http://www.restolola.be/lola-zavel.html); I know people working there and they are very serious they have few vegetable dishes but at least its tasty - the best thing to to would be to contact them -and it's recommended to make reservation anyway)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:09 am 
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Thanks guys!

We probably won't be doing lunch, as he really can't handle eating and then walking around. That said, I may swing by Le Pain Quotidien for that quinoa salad for myself!

Emilie, he's had generally good luck with Chinese restaurants, so he's willing to try that. He's never had Thai, but I love Thai. Do you remember the name of the place you went to near the Bourse? Lola looks really nice, but I think we're more in "wing it" mode than "reservation mode".

Fisticuffs, I was looking at Comocomo as an option. Sorry to hear you were underwhelmed. I may still give it a try, if he's willing to go there though. And I'll have to check out the menu at Soul when I'm on a computer that can handle Flash.

Joshua, chocolate GOOOOOD!!

I'll let you guys know what we end up doing. If it gets too difficult/complicated, we may just have to swing by a Dalhaize, get a bottle of something, and do a picnic in the hotel room. As much as I'd love to go out and celebrate, enjoying each other's company is more important. (In the two years we've been together, we've only gone out to a restaurant once: our first date at Wagamama in Antwerp.) Thanks again for all the advice!

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:22 am 
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Yes! It was BAMBOU FLEUR Rue Van Praet -Actually any place in this street would probably be pretty similar! :P (It's basically consensual asiatic food but as belgians my omni friend and I were both satisfied so why not after all) :)
Oh and they had a fantastic dragon in the entrance. Oh wait no. It was a pirate boat. Or, just a chinese boat? You'll tell me! :D

If you ever fancy genuine thai food I recommand KIN D Rue general Lemmans (highly vegan friendly)

lepelaar wrote:
Thanks guys!


I'll let you guys know what we end up doing. If it gets too difficult/complicated, we may just have to swing by a Dalhaize, get a bottle of something, and do a picnic in the hotel room. As much as I'd love to go out and celebrate, enjoying each other's company is more important. (In the two years we've been together, we've only gone out to a restaurant once: our first date at Wagamama in Antwerp.) Thanks again for all the advice!


<3 <3 <3
That's adorable :)
Enjoy it guys :)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:30 am 
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Cool! Thanks Emilie! Adding that to my list of options. And if we go there, I'll let you know what it was in the entrance.

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:47 am 
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I lived there in 2007 but I wasn't vegan! There are usually lots of Moroccan and kebab places around where you might be able to get something, also I used to go down to Rue de la Vierge Noire where there are a few Asian food places. I can't really remember much about food around the Grand Place except for lots of waffles and chocolate.

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 8:52 am 
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Thanks, everyone, for the advice and tips! We just got back and had a really great time and found food solutions along the way.

When we first got there in the afternoon, we were both hungry so we found a pita place and he had his shoarma and I had a felafel. (Not the best felafel in the world, but hey, I was happy to have something vegan.) Since this was quite filling, we went to the Delhaize and just picked up stuff for dinner. I got a tub of hummus and a tub of guacamole, a bag of plain tortilla chips, a small bottle of gazspacho, and a container of grapes, and that kept me quite happy. The next evening, we'd talked about going out for dinner, but we were both too tired for a sit down place, and I'd pigged out on the rest of the tubs of hummus and guac in the afternoon, and we were really indecisive about where to go, so we just went out to a nearby square and he went to the Quick and I went to the Exki (against Emilie's advice) and I got a nice salad with quinoa, peas, onions, and "legumaise" which had a red thai curry taste. Really nice, actually.

And a shout-out to the Scandic Grand Place hotel (where we got a great deal online). Not only did they have a breakfast buffet included (I went for meusli, fruit salad, and cucumber sandwiches) but after mentioning during the booking that I was vegan and asking about the availability of soy milk, they actually sent someone out before our arrival to pick up a container of Alpro that they kept in the fridge for me. I just had to go to reception in the morning and tell them it was there and they went and got it for me. Really really great service!

ETA: Joshua, we found the chocolate place you mentioned and were planning on going after our trip to the museum but we were so intent on our next destination that we forgot to go back. Next time!

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 2:51 pm 
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lepelaar wrote:
Thanks, everyone, for the advice and tips! We just got back and had a really great time and found food solutions along the way.

When we first got there in the afternoon, we were both hungry so we found a pita place and he had his shoarma and I had a felafel. (Not the best felafel in the world, but hey, I was happy to have something vegan.) Since this was quite filling, we went to the Delhaize and just picked up stuff for dinner. I got a tub of hummus and a tub of guacamole, a bag of plain tortilla chips, a small bottle of gazspacho, and a container of grapes, and that kept me quite happy. The next evening, we'd talked about going out for dinner, but we were both too tired for a sit down place, and I'd pigged out on the rest of the tubs of hummus and guac in the afternoon, and we were really indecisive about where to go, so we just went out to a nearby square and he went to the Quick and I went to the Exki (against Emilie's advice) and I got a nice salad with quinoa, peas, onions, and "legumaise" which had a red thai curry taste. Really nice, actually.

And a shout-out to the Scandic Grand Place hotel (where we got a great deal online). Not only did they have a breakfast buffet included (I went for meusli, fruit salad, and cucumber sandwiches) but after mentioning during the booking that I was vegan and asking about the availability of soy milk, they actually sent someone out before our arrival to pick up a container of Alpro that they kept in the fridge for me. I just had to go to reception in the morning and tell them it was there and they went and got it for me. Really really great service!

ETA: Joshua, we found the chocolate place you mentioned and were planning on going after our trip to the museum but we were so intent on our next destination that we forgot to go back. Next time!


Oh that's good to hear! ...AND you had the perfect weather wich is supposed NEVER to happen here :P The sky has been spectacular those days! (Have you taken pics?) And, wich museums have you seen? Thats funny I was actually thinking of your trip earlier tonight when I saw a tourist bus with the "manneken peas" on it ( like "yey there ARE actually tourists here!")

(oh and, well, guess who had a nice soup at exki yesterday)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 3:09 pm 
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(...and the only reason I had to mention the tiny statue is because I find those filters fascinating)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 3:19 pm 
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The weather was great indeed. We really lucked out. Sunday and Monday were just too forking hot, so I'm glad it cooled down a smidge by the time we went on Tuesday.

The only museum we ended up seeing was the Royal Museum of Fine Arts. I have a thing for the Flemish Primitives. Spent a lot of time just walking. My bf lived in Brussels for 13 years, so he showed me around his old neighborhood and all his old haunts. And, yes, we did the obligatory pass of Manneken Pis, but I was actually more excited to see Jeanneken Pis and Zinneke Pis. (I got pictures of all three, of course.)

There's still a lot I'd like to see. I'd hoped to go see the Coudenberg Archaeological site, but we ran out of steam before we could. And there were some exhibitions at the Bozar that looked really interesting. So we'll be back. (Brussels is only 30 minutes by train from where he lives, but travel is difficult for him, so this is the first time we've even attempted such a short "weekendje weg". But the short distance makes it likely we'll plan another trip soon enough.)

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 Post subject: Re: Brussels?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 3:55 pm 
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lepelaar wrote:
So we'll be back.


yaaaay! good idea!

(but ...mmm... So... who is zinneke peas?????)

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