Boulevard Anspach 73-75. (Métro: Bourse. Mon-Fri 10am-8pm, Sat & Sun 10am-9pm.) Despite the name, a Belgian-style deli which serves up traditional nosh such as maatjes
(Belgian herrings), filet américain
(raw minced meat) or tête pressée
(brawn), along with a lot more edible options. Two long counters line the deli, and you can eat in, also sampling some of their pastries, ice-cream milkshakes or coffee. The clientele is eclectic, from moustached locals to fashion victims. Their shop next door sells a wide variety of cheeses.
Bière Artisanale Ch de Wavre 174. (Métro: Porte de Namur. Mon-Sat 11am-7pm.) A drinker's paradise, stocking more than 400 different types of beer. It's quite cheap, too, and you can even buy the correct glass in which to serve your favorite tipple. To learn more about Belgian beer or to place an order for home delivery, look at their website www.users.skynet.be/beermania or go along to one of the many classes (some given in English) and tasting sessions organized here to spread the word.
Le Caprice des Lieux Rue Bois de Linthout 3. (Métro: Georges Henri. Tues-Sat 9.30am-7pm, Sun 9am-12.30pm.) A cheese lover's heaven, with hundreds of beautifully presented cheeses set amid tasteful decor. You can also purchase entire cheese platters.
Dandoy Rue au Beurre 31. (Métro: Bourse. Mon-Sat 8.30am-6.30pm, Sun 10.30am-6.30pm.) This famous shop has been making biscuits since 1829, so it's no surprise they now have it down to a fine art. Their main speciality is known locally as "speculoos", a kind of hard gingerbread biscuit. This shop even has some larger-than-life biccies which are the size of small children and can cost as much as ?50. Moreover they come in a weird variety of shapes - the most unappetising one being the life-size biscuit Manneken Pis. They have two branches on the Grand-Place and a tearoom at their rue Charles Buls 14 branch.
De Muynck Regnier Rue du Marché-aux-Herbes 56. (Métro: Gare Centrale. Daily 10am-9pm.) This specialist beer shop, handily placed near the Grand-Place, sells over 150 different types of beers, including a number of rare Belgian varieties. Its popularity with tourists explains the slightly inflated prices, but there's a wide selection and the owner will quite happily chat away all day about any Belgian booze you care to mention.