Tuesday, January 18, 2011

"Oh look, they've dressed him in a little suit!"

Day 2 in Brussels: We got up early (for me) and headed down to partake in one of my favorite pastimes - flea market lurking.

It was considerably more windy on the second day of our trip, which made for an interesting and slightly dangerous time at les puces, because fragile and heavy things alike were flying off of tables, hitting people in the head, and then shattering everywhere. So much so that I wanted to yell "Opa!" everytime we heard a crash...

This les puces had a very different vibe than my beloved Plainpalais, in that it seemed like the vendors were all working together, like they were "pulling their tips" so to speak. It seemed like there were a couple of managers who held the money, and these managers each had a section and would check up on the vendors. (I don't know if this is true, but it's what it seemed like.) It also appeared this way because it seemed like each vendor had a department - one guy seemed to have all of the chandeliers, another seemed to have all the furniture, a few close together had the majority of the kitchen stuff...which to me makes it not quite as fun to search through boxes (though it does streamline the whole process a bit). It was a good market, but my heart still belongs to Plainpalais...

We then went to wandering a bit, and found what ended up being the best frites we had the whole trip. If you go to Brussels, the guy sells them at la Chapelle from a stand. We loved it with tartar sauce...

Our next stop was for a drink at Leffe. We both were disappointed with our time here because it ended up being extremely hoitey-toitey. And our server sucked. I mean he was just terrible. And rude. Leffe didn't feel like a Belgian beer experience, but like going to a boring, white-walled, expensive restaurant where your server thinks you just purposely ran over his dog with a steam roller. I understand everybody has bad days, but it's still no excuse to be rude to people who are being very nice to you. The good news is that you can drink Leffe anywhere in the city, so spend your money elsewhere...

And elsewhere we went...

...to go see Manneken Pis again! And look! They've dressed him up in a little suit!

It turns out there was a marching band playing in front of him earlier in the day, and the organizers dressed him up in a matching suit, and gave him a little trumpet.

This area - in and around Grand Place and Sablon - were my favorites to hang out in during our weekend. There were plenty of cool little places to eat and drink, lots of people around, and lots of beautiful architecture to take in. There was also plenty of gaufre. What is gaufre you ask?

This is gaufre. Think little waffles. With whatever toppings you want on it. (You can also get them plain.) I don't know if it's a Belgian thing or a Brussels thing, but all I do know is that it's delicious.

My eyes were bigger than my tummy when I ordered mine - which as you can see is covered in hot chocolate, whipped cream, strawberries and bananas...needless to say, Dan had to finish most of mine...

Did you know that gaufre makes you thirsty? Well, it's true. So guess where we went next? Back to Delirium Cafe! Yeah!

The place was packed when we got there, and we were lucky enough to grab the last beer barrel table in the place...

[Delirium tremens and Rodenbach Grand Cru...]

[Kwak, young gouda sprinkled in celery salt, and Pink Killer, which is made from grapefruits...]

[Honey beer - yumma.]

Dan drank a coconut beer out of a coconut...

And with that we bid Adieu to "Delirium Cafe." It was a sad good-bye, but we know we'll be back...

Lucky for us, all those little alleyways that lead you to Delirium are lousy with restaurants, all of which seem to be serving similiar or the same menus, so we picked one with a nice big awning and sat down for some more moules and frites.

And of course we couldn't say good-bye to Brussels in the morning without having seen Grand Place at night!

The following morning we had an hour or so to make a last minute trip out for souvenirs and frites for the train, and of course it was the first bit of sun we saw the whole weekeend...

See ya, Brussels! We had a fantastic time and can't wait to see more of you on our next trip out there.

A la prochain friends...


  1. How amazing! I will definitely bookmark this for when I go to Brussels. Glad you had a fun time!

  2. Thanks for the tour of Brussels! I look forward to a trip so I can sample the moules & frites and gaufre. I am not a beer drinker but I am sure there is wine to be found there too.

  3. I can't believe they dressed him in a little suit! That's awesome!
    And such a bummer to hear about Leffe. If I had gone I would have totally been looking forward to that too.

  4. It looks like you two had a great time in Brussels! Congrats on your 1 year anniversary! I'll have to remember to stop at the Delirium Café sometime!

  5. I want grapefruit beer! It looks totally delicious. Also I'm jealous that you found the Delirium bar. My friend and I tried to find it last year when we went to Brussels and had no such luck.