Bruges recommendations?

Hi everyone!

As I’m turning the big 3-0 next month, my lovely husband has booked us a trip to Bruges, as I’ve wanted to go there for some time. :blush:

I know it’s not exactly renowned as a wine hotspot but has anyone been to any particularly good restaurants, wine bars, pubs etc and does anyone recommend any drinks-related experiences (beer tours and the like) that they’ve enjoyed?

In fact, suggestions for any unmissable Bruges experiences, drinks-related or otherwise, would be very welcome.


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Not from Bruges, but this is worth a try: Clos d’Opleeuw Chardonnay 2001 Haspengouw |

I assume you’ve watched the movie In Bruges in preparation?


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Bruges is lovely but caters mainly for tourists who don’t worry about a budget, hence the hefty prices (especially around the Grote Markt).

Next month the mussels season is coming to an end but you should still find the traditional fare of Mussels, Beer & chips (with mayo) widely available. One of the better ones is Restaurant Poules Moules (Simon Stevinplein 9).

Try Patisserie Academie for great coffee and gorgeous fresh cakes.

If you’re after an institution which serves a local delicacy, venture 5km out to Damme. You can get there by bike, boat, on foot or a 10 minute taxi ride. The restaurant is called Siphon ( and their speciality is Eel in Green sauce (very yummy). They also do juicy steaks if the speciality is not your thing and have a very comprehensive wine list (GC Burgundies, Ch. Margaux and Ch. D’ Yquem amongst the endless list of wine gems). You will need to book and request the eel or allow at least 4 hours for them to prepare the dish if you just decide to turn up. Enjoy.


This little place is fantastic

A small tapas place down a dark little alley, I’m
Sure we drank beer there but the food was great :+1:!
Also, try the chips. The Belgians triple fry them ! A coronary on a plate but I’m sure the mayonnaise will
cancel the fat out :wink:

There are many good restaurants in Bruges, the problem is many of the better ones are tourist attractions in their own right and as with all restaurants what was good this year can be a huge disappointment the next , new chef, change of ownership etc.
This place was decent on our last visit…

Den Gouden Harynck was good but going by reviews seems to be going through an inconsistent phase, many restaurants in Bruges have followed , sadly, the decorated plate theme so popular with restaurants everywhere, sad as Belgian was a place you could guarantee actually getting food on your plate at one time, the 3* Jan Hertog outside of Bruges is a prime example, hideously expensive and despite great cooking very little of it.

Wow, some great recommendations, thank you!!

All three of those restaurants seem like winners to me, @Clique, @Leah and @cerberus! And a nice mix of styles to try. Especially like the idea of Tapas and beer!

I’m starting to see why my husband was so keen to book this trip now…

Haha, YES! So brilliant - one of the reasons I’ve been keen to go there. And we’re watching it again before we leave, of course. We nearly booked the hotel where they filmed some of it, apparently…

I didn’t know they made any wine in Belgium! I will look out to see if I can try any while I’m there… could be interesting! Have you tried any yourself?

What you will see in Bruges is a lot of people drinking premium beers from what appear to be large wine glasses with their meals instead of wine.

Yeah I had a bottle about 10 years ago, quite Burgundian, quite expensive but nice.

Been there a couple of times, summer and autumn, and agree with the above - some excellent, but pricey restaurants, and some pricey but ordinary restaurants living on past reputations.

Last time we were there a couple of years ago, we ate a couple of times at t Schrijverke, in Gruuthusestraat, quite central. Not Michelin by any means, but decent food and reasonable list of wine and beers at sensible prices. Run by the same family for a long time. Cherry beer was good on a warm summer’s day (not as high in alcohol as most).

Have a good time! A nice place to wander round after dark when the day tourist buses have gone.

Looks as though you’ll be in Bruges a few weeks to get through all the suggestions!
However, I can add that Herberg Vlissinghe at Blekersstraat 2, Bruges 8000, +32 50 34 37 37 is an ancient pub with good atmosphere, friendly bar staff and ok-ish pub dishes. It’s within the innner ring not far from the city centre - certainly walkable. Have a great time.

@laura, @NickFoster. If you have a look over on youtube there is a couple of guys who make videos, short documentaries specifically on Belgian and Dutch wine, vineyards and producers. They are called tasty tales.

Nobody goes to Bruges for the wine. It’s very touristy and very pretty. If you’re going by car, do yourself a favour and take a trip to Ghent and buy your beers to take home here: – masses more choice than in Bruges and much, much cheaper. My favourite pub FWIW was De Garre:

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Are you going by train via Brusels? there’s a beautiful art nouveau bar and restaurant called la Porteuse d’Eau not far from the Midi station.

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Thanks again, guys! These are all going on the list and Sam and I are going to have a look through them all and make a shortlist this weekend. :smiley:

@cathasturias We are going by train - not sure where we’re stopping but that restaurant looks gorgeous so fingers crossed we’ll have time to visit! What did you have when you went? The menu looks too delicious and I can’t decide what I’d order, so any recommendations would be great! :smile:

Brugge is a beer place so I would focus on that.

The definitive bar for many years has been t Brugs Beertje (the Brugge Bear) - see their Facebook page here Redirecting...

A nice brewery visit (with good restaurant at the end of the tour is Straffe Hendrik (

If you do have the time I would suggest train trips to Antwerp and/or Ghent.

Have a good time!

As you say, very hard to choose. We asked what was best on the day, and as it was a Monday, fish not recommended. I had chicken waterzooi which was lovely. Have a great time!

Agree re the brewery tour, it’s good fun, though be prepared to scale a few ladders! Nice place for a drink and a meal there too.

So, we’re back! And thanks to your recommendations, we had a very delicious week indeed! A few thank yous/reports from our foodie travels:

Tried to go here and it was closed the week we were there! Haha, absolutely gutted as the photos we saw on TripAdvisor looked amaaaazing!

We went here on Thursday and the food was GORGEOUS! Really great vibe too, and we had a lovely bottle of Dao, and enjoyed a ‘Lazy Red Cheeks’ cocktail which is apparently a Belgian invention and very moreish indeed…!

After climbing the Bell Tower, we rewarded ourselves with a HUGE box of chips and mayo from the van on the square - it was epic.

We looked at this place and it seemed amazing but they didn’t have a table the night we wanted to go. On our list for next time!

We took your advice and did this - it was great! Zero nightlife in Bruges so after about 9pm you can walk the streets and they’re practically empty. Felt like the whole city was ours. :slight_smile:

We went here after dinner one evening and loved it. I had a raspberry beer which was delicious, Sam had one of the local beers (can’t remember which one…) and it was such a great atmosphere!

This was one of the favourite things we did on the whole trip! The brewery tour was quite intense with lots of scary staircases and a trip up to the roof but it was so much fun. Thanks for the recommendation (and @MarkC too!)

Lastly, I have to tell you all about this place:

One of the best meals of our lives. :heart_eyes::heart_eyes::heart_eyes:
There’s no menu, you just get what you’re given, but every dish and appetiser was utterly gorgeous. We arrived at 7 and didn’t leave until 11.30 and it didn’t feel like the evening dragged at all. Amazing atmosphere, stunning food, great wine matches with each course, brilliant, attentive service, and an experience like no other. Not exactly cheap (five courses, an aperitif and a wine match with each course was around 240 euros) but actually great value for what you get and money well spent. I highly recommend going here if you’re in Bruges any time soon.


Boeuf a la Flamande plus a bottle or three of Brugse Zot…image