E is for Etterbeek – Commune Dinners in Brussels

Etterbeek - Park Side Prasserie dinner tips in Brussels by @onfoodandwine

We are still eating our way through the 19 communes of Brussels. Finally making it to the commune I work in – which kind of limited the spots for dinner. But no challenge is too big and we took Etterbeek by storm

Commune facts – Etterbeek

Not the biggest commune in Brussels city , Etterbeek saw its fair piece of history:

  • in the Middle Ages Etterbeek used to be independent from Brussels except it still paid taxes on beer (it’s always the beer …)
  • in the 1600s it used to be a barony
  • it hosts one of the nicest parks in Brussels, the Cinquantenaire
  • the Belgian cartoonist Herge was born in Etterbeek in 1907
  • it is the home commune to the Maison Cauchie, a beautiful piece of Art Nouveau architecture
  • it hosts an annual Medieval Fair (good food and great beer)

… and much more to be discovered.

Culinary Discovery – Park Side Brasserie

I know Etterbeek for its lunch spots. As it is was my turn to propose a dinner place (we take letters in turn … ) I started the search for dinner places in Etterbeek. On the very rare occasion we go for dinner in Etterbeek it is on the way to somewhere else and our stop tends to be La Brace (more about this in a later post).

Using the ‘power’ of social media I asked the @onfoodandwine followers what restaurants they recommend in Brussels. We got many suggestions and finally decided on the Park Side Brasserie.

After an aperitif at Aloft Hotel (so and so) we made our way to the Park Side Brassrie. Two smokers and two none meant we had first a drink on their terrace overlooking the Cinquantenaire park. Chique. We then made our way into the restaurant where the initial reaction was ‘wow!’. The huge chandelier had me at bling! Once at our table I took the Park Side Brasserie in. Sophisticated and on the high dining end. Crips and clean. A bit too business like for my off-work taste but aside from that a pleasant restaurant.  

… and we were there for the food. We ordered mixed starters: smoked salmon with blinis and sour cream (delicious!), snails in garlic sauce which looked the part, and oozing mozzarella with a tomato bruschetta. The mains were meat friendly – traditional steak and fries, beef tartrate and more fries and the Park Side burger (holy … burger!). Full? We followed all this with cheesecake, chocolate panncotta and Irish coffee.

The food was a bit pricey but delicious. Then again the restaurant is located in the ‘heart’ of Europe amongst business hotels so we should have expected both the price and overall business atmosphere. We enjoyed it lots but would I go back? For the bling, yes. For the food? Hello, burger! For the dinner atmosphere? Would probably give another restaurant a try. 

… and a quick addition: I was also invited to a tasting lunch by Park Side Brasserie. Delicious food, and a much more casual working atmosphere. Of course the fact the sun was shining and the terrace overlooking the Parc du Cinquantenaire was full, helped a lot. Definitely would recommend having a lunch at Park Side Brasserie – in our out, weather permitting. Also good to note for company dos, as Christmas lunches are coming up soon, the restaurant offers a very generous private space for lunch or dinner. 

Park Side Brasseriewebsite

Please share other Etterbeek restaurant suggestions in the comments 

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