Sometimes you need to live far away from a place for a very long time to start to appreciate it. Sometimes you need to take a step back, and look at it from another angle to understand what you’ve missed the first time. We’ve both changed in four years, evolved, grown up, welcomed some grey hairs, but I remember now why I’ve always loved you.Brussels, you are full of human warmth. And now, you are also filled with awesome coffee shops pour mon plus grand bonheur d’instagrameuse redoutable.
The “culture” of the coffee house has hit Brussels in its heart, and the city is now home to many cool coffee shops. But why? Why we slowly abandoned the idea of sipping our Lavazza coffee in a non aesthetic cup standing at a bar au profit du coffee art? Gentrification? The desire to become a little Brooklyn? A sudden passion for coffee beans, vegan cakes, and cold brew? I don’t have the answer (but many more theories), I’m just glad that all these coolish spots made Starbucks has been. Who wants to take the picture of a cardboard cup with your misspelled name on it when you can have barista art inside of a ceramic cup?
Non je ne me moque pas, you just need to have a look at my Instagram to understand that I’m dead serious. It took me years to like coffee, to appreciate this little ritual between me and my cuppa. When I could feel awkward being alone in a bar or a restaurant, the coffee shop is a place where I feel good alone. There is a real culture around the coffee house (“I’ll be there for youuuu”), so I wanted to share with you my go to places when I’m in Brussels.
Without a doubt my favourite coffee shop in Brussels. Not only they are roasting their own beans (which gives it a very rich flavour), but you actually have the feeling that the person making your coffee knows what they are doing. Both of their spots are quiet small, but friendly with cool outdoor space. Definitely a place for the café connoisseurs. Le petit truc en plus? Matcha on the menu.
Conveniently located 5 minutes away from my house, Hinterland aka the ultimate urban refuge became a must in the capital for anyone looking for an eco-friendly spot with healthy (but absolutely not boring) food . More than a pretty place (you could easily feel like you are in a stylish cabin in Sweden), Hinterland is pioneering in many domains : sustainability and turmeric latte (easy to find in London but it is the first time that I spot some in Brussels). Did I mention how cosy is Hinterland, and how tasty is their coffee brewed in house? Le petit truc en plus? Yummy breakfast and homemade cakes.
Le Café du Sablon
When I learned that the team behind le Café du Sablon was the same than Café Capitale I was not surprised. High quality coffee, homemade cakes, professionals baristas, and cool interior design perfectly located between le petit and le grand Sablon. Less intimate than Café Capitale, it’s a perfect spot for larger groups. Le petit truc en plus? They are only few steps away from the coolest art galleries in town.
It was my first trying out Café LULU, and it was almost impossible to not like the concept : A little coffee shop located in a design/furniture store in a massive space in the heart of the Chatelain. Even though the kitchen was closed, we tried out some of their salads, drinks and deserts and everything was fresh and yummy. Their matcha latte was my favourite so far in Brussels, and god knows I have high expectations when it comes to my favourite green powder. Café LULU is a perfectly curated spot, but still feels homy and cosy. Le petit truc en plus? Their inspiring design selection and setting.
And you, where do you get your cuppa in Brussels?