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La Fruitière

La Fruitière cheese shop (Brussels)

© Maurine Toussaint

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In a previous life, this mother-son duo tended a herd of goats in the mountains of their native Jura department. But ever since 2017, Véronique Socié (winner of Belgium’s Best Female Cheesemaker award in 2016) and Léo Begin set up shop with their wheels of cheese in tow on the cobblestoned Rue du Marché-au-Charbon and turned La Fruitière into a hybrid space dedicated to the crème de la creamery. In the east-facing window display, there’s a cheese-aging section, and on the west side, a tasting room where you can savor all of their wares on cheese platters, or in runny grilled cheese sandwiches, alongside well-sourced wines and wild beers. The delicious selection the day we went: a lovely artisanal Pti Fagnou from the Ardennes, seasoned with fennel seed from the Fromagerie du Troufleur; an intensely creamy Manigodine (a double reblochon wrapped in spruce needles) from cheesemaker Joseph Paccard, and Rouge Gorge, a collector-worthy beer from the La Source microbrewery, flavored with Wépion strawberries. You also won’t want to miss the cheese and tea, coffee or even chocolate pairing workshops at night. // Monica Noli

The hidden gem: Cabricharme, a raw milk goat cheese from the Fermière de Méan co-op, voted the second-best cheese in the world at the World Best Cheeses Awards (€31/kg).

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