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The Top 10 Restaurants In Leuven, Belgium

Leuven Town Hall |© WikiCommons
Leuven Town Hall |© WikiCommons
Located only half an hour from Brussels,Leuven is a town rich in history, with gorgeous architecture and a laid-back atmosphere. It has some wonderful restaurants as well – these are our top 10 picks.

Domus

This is the closest to serving Belgian homemade meals that a restaurant can get. From simple sandwiches to moules-frites and stoofvlees in big portions, Domus‘ menu is like a homage to the homely side of Belgian cuisine. The interior feels very Flemish as well, with its dark furniture and heavy, wooden beams. The decorations on the outside walls just add to its charm. Plus, this restaurant has its own brewery.

Address: 8 Tiensestraat, Leuven, Belgium, +32 16 20 14 49

Den Domus

De Werf

Brasserie, Restaurant, Belgian, European, Pub Grub, $$$
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The name of this quirky restaurant translates to ‘construction site’. There are different references to this in the decorations – you can find paint rollers, trowels and other equipment glued to the walls. The fact that some walls are only half-finished somehow only makes the restaurant cozier. The menu has a lot of little jokes, like stating that the children’s menus are only available for children up to 99 years, or calling mushrooms gnome-houses. The food is served like at a picnic: on colorful plates or even in plastic lunch boxes. In short, it’s the ideal place if you want something quick and simple, but in an amusing atmosphere. This, combined with its low prices, makes De Werf incredibly popular among Leuven’s university students.
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Mon:
9:00 am - 12:00 am
Tue:
9:00 am - 12:00 am
Wed:
9:00 am - 12:00 am
Thu:
9:00 am - 12:00 am
Fri:
9:00 am - 12:00 am

Inari

Restaurant, Sushi
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Inari
Inari | Courtesy of Inari
Leuven has so many sushi restaurants, it can feel like you’ve stepped into the Belgian version of a Japanese city. They are all quite excellent, but Inari comes with the most recommendations. The name of this restaurant actually refers to a kind of sushi – rice rolled in tofu. But Inari offers so much more than that. Whether you want some simple sushi dishes or an entire sushi boat, Inari is the place to go.
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Kalypta

Restaurant, Mexican, Greek, Mediterranean, $$$
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Kalypta
Kalypta | courtesy of Ayla Sileghem
This ‘world cuisine’ restaurant serves food from various countries, making it the perfect place to take your taste buds on a trip around the world. Despite its multiculturalism, the colorful and welcoming interior of this little restaurant will make you feel right at home.
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Sun:
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Sun:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Mon:
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Mon:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Tue:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Wed:
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Wed:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Thu:
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Thu:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Fri:
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Fri:
5:30 pm - 10:30 pm
Sat:
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Sat:
5:30 pm - 10:30 pm

De Nachtuil

Restaurant, French, Belgian, Dutch, $$$
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Hungry for a late bite? De Nachtuil, which literally means ‘night owl’, is a restaurant that serves food until 2am. The food is a mix of French and Belgian cuisine. You can order typically Belgian meals like waterzooi, stoofvlees or the famous moules-frites, but various French dishes are also available. Located close to the Oude Markt, where most of the bars are located, it’s a great spot to enjoy a nice meal after trying out Leuven’s bars.
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Sun - Mon:
6:00 pm - 3:00 am
Tue - Wed:
6:00 pm - 2:00 am
Wed - Thu:
6:00 pm - 2:00 am
Thu - Fri:
6:00 pm - 2:00 am
Fri - Sat:
6:00 pm - 3:00 am
Sat - Sun:
6:00 pm - 3:00 am

De Valck

Restaurant, Belgian, Seafood, European, $$$
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De Valck
De Valck | courtesy of Ayla Sileghem
This restaurant specializes in mussels with garlic, bacon and white wine, etc. Even spicy mussels are available. De Valck is a bit more expensive than your average student restaurant, but it’s still the go-to place if you have moules-frites on your mind. Besides mussels, De Valck also has other great seafood on the menu, next to the classic steaks.
More Info
Sun:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Sun:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Tue:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Tue:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Wed:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Wed:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Thu:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Thu:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Fri:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Fri:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Sat:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Sat:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm

Thai House

Grocery Store, Asian, Thai, $$$
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Thai House
Thai House | courtesy of Ayla Sileghem
Near the Ladeuzeplein with its famous University Library, there is a peculiar round building that serves authentic Thai food. It also has its own buffet with a wide variety of Thai specialties. What makes this restaurant great is that it also has another buffet and a store nearby. The buffet next door is aimed at students and opens during lunch time, and you can even attend a workshop on how to prepare Thai food. In case you don’t want a workshop, but feel inspired to cook a Thai dinner, the nearby store has all the ingredients you need.
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Burger Folie

Restaurant, Belgian, $$$
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Burger Folie
Burger Folie | Courtesy of Burger Folie
Forget McDonalds, Burger Folie serves delicious, gourmet burgers. Using only fresh ingredients, quality meat and homemade fries and sauces, this restaurant is a burger heaven. Besides burgers with beef, Burger Folie also offers burgers with lamb, chicken, fish, or a vegetarian option.
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Sun:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Tue:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Wed:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Thu:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Fri:
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Fri:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Sat:
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Sat:
5:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Etna Trattoria

Restaurant, Italian, $$$
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Etna Trattoria
Etna Trattoria | Courtesy of Etna Trattoria
This tiny restaurant brings Sicily to Leuven. Or rather: it takes you away to Sicily. Many ingredients come straight from the Italian island, making you feel like you’re actually there. Besides the food, the restaurant also imports the hospitable, warm atmosphere of Sicily. Etna’s authentic ‘slow-food’ Italian cuisine and friendly service are sure to make your evening out in Leuven a great experience.
More Info
Tue:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Tue:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Wed:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Wed:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Thu:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Thu:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Fri:
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Fri:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Sat:
5:30 pm - 10:00 pm

Würst

This place serves hot dogs, but not the kind you’d expect. Würst was created with ‘haute hot dogs’ in mind. This was obviously a success – the Würst dogs are fantastic. With their unusual ingredients, like mimosa, guacamole or witlof, they are a bit pricier than your average hot dog, but the taste experience is above and beyond. Würst also has gluten-free or vegetarian options.

Address: 1 Margatethaplein, Leuven, Belgium, +32 16 90 16 90

The Maharadja 'Haute Dog' | Courtesy of Würst

The Maharadja ‘Haute Dog’ | Courtesy of Würst