Offering a generous space to its customers, La Brocante is the first choice among Brussels’s traditional bars. Busy from early in the morning until late in the afternoon, this cafe-bar offers a homey feel with its collectibles and rustic decorations. Here you will find the true traditional gueuze beer, which is served to you with a big smile. The weekend is the best time to go, for the live jazz and also for the lively atmosphere.
Did someone say hipster? Somebody might have. A bar/brasserie in which artsy people are habitual customers, CHAFF is the place to be. Head here if you’re looking for a lively ambiance, concerts at least once per week, late nights, a selection of board games, and a Monday evening special offer. Your curiosity will drive you to this bar, with its strong personality and placement in a popular spot.
Place du Jeu de Balle 21, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 2 502 58 48
A piano that makes different cocktails each time you press a piano key… Zoinks! Have a look, and let the world know if it’s true. Pianocktail is a perfect place to meet new people, since it aims to gather all kinds through social events like exhibitions, big meetings, and most of all, through the bar itself. Besides the two essential things – the piano and the cocktails – Pianocktail is known as being a cultural bistro.
Rue Haute 306, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 487 63 48 22
Le Marseillais might seem like a place only for the southern French people, but it’s more than that. Favorites on the menu include the wide selection of pastis (served at reasonable prices, which is rather rare in the European capital), and a good selection of beers. Last but not least, here there are the ever-present sport matches. Also, the food is quite memorable. So after strolling through the Flea Market, try a croque madame with a blonde beer at Le Marseillais. You’ll be ready to go back before you know it.
Rue Blaes 163, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 2 503 00 83
There’s always a buzz here, because it’s busy and popular, stylish yet relaxed. Pin Pon has a rather uncommon background – it is a former fire station in the Marolles. Those in charge have taken advantage of that history – they have dressed the counters and doors in a special fabric made of old grey and red fire hoses. This is another hyped spot where you can enjoy both a beverage and a new experience.
Place du Jeu de Balle 62, 1000, Brussels, Belgium +32 2 540 89 99
A bright and zesty relative newcomer, Kombi Bar is in the Rue Haute. People quickly spread the word when this place opened. Look for the black, old-school van in the logo, and you’ll find it for real (upside down) in the bar. Kombi considers quality first, which is apparent in its homemade products. With an original and bright modern decor, Kombi Bar spreads good vibes all week long and gets the party started at night. The young staff will make you feel at ease and listen to any of your opinions.
Rue haute, 60, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 486 76 54 27
Le Renard Bleu
In a building that dates to 1649, Le Renard Bleu is a ‘young’ bar which keeps the Marollian spirit alive. Most know it for the pancakes, others for the amazing cheese, but you should get to know it for its beer. There’s a very good beer menu, including brews from the Trappists and bio beers. The staff is lovely and very friendly, and the ambiance is calm and cozy. Besides, you’ll find a little interior garden, which is a plus for the bio lovers.
Rue des Renards 3, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 489 99 88 85
A great place in the Marolles quarter is Bar Recyclart. This unconventional place is born from a non-profit organization located in the abandoned train station Bruxelles-Chapelle. With an alternative look, similar to ‘60s style, and a great sound system, Recylart offers a wide range of vegetarian and vegan dishes. Of course, there is also the usual Belgian beer selection. It is perfect for anyone who wants to hang out in a hot spot.
Ursulinenstraat 25, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 2 502 57 34
Most of the people in Brussels say it’s pretty difficult to find a decent cocktail. So you’ll be surprised to enter this intimate hidden gem. Here you’ll discover good, refined cocktails – veritable masterpieces. More than that, the bartenders know their trade and are happy to prepare you a range of drinks from classic to contemporary. Hortense has only 15-20 seats, and prices might seem a little steep. However, the quality and the magical atmosphere are the real draw.
Rue des Sablons 7, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 479 54 44 87
A great spot in the Marolles is Havana, a bar/club situated right next to the Poelaert Elevator. After a long week, you’ll be pleased to find Latino rhythms, never-ending mojitos, and barmen who (literally) put fire on the bar on weekends. With such a lively atmosphere, there’s no wonder Havana is full most of the time. Go in the evening for an apéro and then stay until late night for more.
Rue de l’Epée 4, 1000 Brussels, Belgium +32 2 502 12 24