Schaerbeek is a vibrant, colorful neighborhood historically known as ‘The City of Donkeys.’ Although not typically a destination for those in search of a wild night out, Schaerbeek nevertheless has plenty of hidden gems to offer and is too often neglected in favor of more popular areas such as Ixelles or Saint-Gilles. Quirkiness and a strong community spirit make these 10 Schaerbeek favorites well worth a visit.
Bar du Gaspi
Bar, Tapas, $$$
Bar du Gaspi
This bar first appeared on the scene in 1980 as ‘Le Gaspi’, and quickly became one of the hippest places to be in Schaerbeek, as artists, journalists, and intellectuals frequented the premises. Twenty-five years later, the renamed Bar du Gaspi continues its legacy, with the inclusion of tapas – or ‘Gaspas’ – on the menu.
309 Chaussée de Haecht, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 2 245 22 30
One of the best cocktail bars in Brussels, this initiative from Chef Benjamin Laborie exudes class and luxury. Although prices are not easy on the wallet, the quality of the drinks and the tastefully decorated interior at S-Bar are definitely worth splurging on.
650 Chaussée de Louvain, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 2 325 12 94
Bar, Pub Grub
Quirkily decorated with donkeys of all sizes and appearances – the symbol of Schaerbeek – l’Âne Fou is an authentic and cozy meeting place for a public that ranges from students to seasoned locals to tourists. The beer menu is excellent and sufficiently varied, and food is available until late, which make this bar a local staple.
19 Rue Royale Sainte Marie, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 2 218 86 62
Café Poussette was founded with the purpose of giving adults a chance to relax in a cafe environment while feeling secure in the knowledge that their children were both welcomed and catered to. Who says being a parent stops you from having a social life?
22 Avenue Louis Bertrand, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 2 241 41 45
This self-styled ‘Bièrothèque‘ offers a selection of more than 250 artisanal beers, which are available for sale in the shop or available to drink at the bar. The owners are absolutely passionate about beer and happy to give information, making this bar a must-see for any beer fanatic.
23 Avenue Louis Bertrand, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 470 83 21 72
Attached to the Maison des Arts, the location of this cafe is absolutely beautiful, with antique furnishings and a fresh, light selection of homemade food. Ideal for lunch, or simply to while away the long summer evenings on the terrace, l’Estaminet is a firm Schaerbeek favorite.
147 Chaussée de Haecht, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 498 59 72 27
Schaerbeek’s very own wine bar, the elegant and refined Chez Felix has a fantastic selection of Belgian wines and two very knowledgeable owners who are more than happy to suggest the perfect vintage. There is no need to be a wine expert to enjoy this gem.
142 Avenue Felix Marchal, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 2 736 82 04
Cafe, Bar, Belgian
Aux Trois Rois
Bar, Cafe, Belgian
Aux Trois Rois
Aux Trois Rois has the distinction of being the oldest bar in Schaerbeek. Situated in an old coaching inn, this bar has a distinctly folkloric vibe, as the owners have decorated the cafe with images of Pogge, a giant and hero in Schaerbeek folktales. Aux Trois Rois has also played a part in the creation of the society ‘Les Amis des Amis de Pogge’, which aims to revitalize local folklore.
371 Chaussée de Haecht, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels
A so-called ‘Café Associatif,’ La Carotte was born of the desire to create a communal space for people from the neighborhood to exercise their creative skills, while being able to relax over a beer or a glass of wine. From music jamming sessions to editing the local newspaper, La Cité des Anes/Ezelstad, La Carotte is a cozy, communal hotbed of creativity. It is important to note that membership is required, but as the fee is one euro per year, it shouldn’t be a huge deterrent.
3 Rue Josse Impens, 1030 Schaerbeek, Brussels +32 484 07 94 25