A friend and I were looking for somewhere to eat dinner last Wednesday and stumbled upon Quartier Libre on Rue Lesbroussart. I know this place has been open for a couple of years and reviewed by others, and I had even walked past it several times, but hadn’t tried it until now. It turned out to be a pleasant surprise and was perfect for a mid-week dinner.
We read the sign outside that advertised the unique menu – a choice of 4 small dishes for €15. It seemed like a good deal so we headed inside. We were greeted by friendly staff and shown to a table in the back, overlooking the open kitchen. The décor is cozy, with loads of cool exposed light bulbs hanging from the ceiling.
We ordered an aperitif (for €4) and the waiter kindly explained the concept after asking if it was our first time in the restaurant. The menu is displayed up on a big chalkboard and is arranged in four categories – meats, vegetables, grains and the chef’s suggestions. Each table has a stack of papers, on which you write your name and check the box for the 4 items you’ve selected.
Not knowing what to expect from the main course, we both ordered a starter (€3 each). I had the eggplant (aubergine) dip with bread and my friend tried the artichokes – both were delicious. The main course was presented nicely, with 4 small dishes arranged on a large plate. I had chicken nem with sweet & sour sauce (meat), risotto with parmesan (grain), shitake mushrooms with truffles (vegetable) and pear with blue cheese (chef’s suggestion). The portions were very generous and we ate every yummy bite. We were too full to order dessert but from what I saw at the table next to us, the options (such as a huge piece of cheese cake) looked pretty good.
Overall, I would give this place 4 out of 5. The food is excellent and price is just right – around €30 for an aperitif, starter, main dish, glass of wine and water. The menu changes seasonally so when I go back (and I will definitely go back) I can hopefully try something new. They have two locations in Brussels– one near Place Flagey and the other on Place du Luxembourg.
16 Rue Lesbroussart, 1050 Ixelles
Tel: +32 2 644 9400
Open Monday 12-2pm, Tuesday to Friday 12-2pm and 7-10:30pm, Saturday 7-10:30pm
44 Rue de Trèves, 1050 Ixelles
Tel: +32 2 230 4194
Open Monday to Friday, lunch only
Images via Yelp and Quartier Libre.