Mussels in Brussels (moules), not to be confused with Jean-Claude Van Damme who is known as the muscles from Brussels, is the local favorite in the Belgian capital. It’s served in a steam-pot and normally served with frites (moules-frites).
Conde Nast says to try these restaurants:
2 Quai aux Briques, Brussels (00 32 2 511 6089; www.restaurantfrancois.be). Dating back to 1922, this brightly-lit restaurant has its own fish shop next door. Dishes include starters of moules parquées (raw mussels) as well as traditional casseroles of mussels.
LA BELLE MARAICHERE
11 Place Sainte Cathérine, Brussels (00 32 2 512 9759; www.labellemaraichere.com). One of Brussels’ best fish restaurants, this 19th-century-style, wood-panelled bistro, serves simple mussel dishes. Open Fri-Tue.
7 rue des Domincains, Brussels (00 32 2 512 2084; www.scheltema.be). An elegant brasserie off the Grand’ Place, open Mon-Sat.
AU VIEUX BRUXELLES
35 rue St Boniface, Brussels (00 32 2 503 3111; www.auvieuxbruxelles.com). This is one of the best places to have mussels and chips in a quaint café dating from 1882, in the heart of Ixelles. Open Tue-Sun.
Place Jardin aux Fleurs, Brussels (00 32 2 511 8695; www.spinnekopke.be). A traditional and inexpensive restaurant with Belgian specialties on the menu.