Most beer lovers familiar with foreign beers, already know BrewDog, or at least have heard of it. The sometimes controversial Scottish brewery doesn’t only brew beer, it also runs a few dozen bars. Already quite a while ago, BrewDog Brussels opened right next to Central Station, but a recent change is finally turning it into the beer geek mecca it should have been from the start. The hoppy beers BrewDog is known for, are now fresher than ever, the Buffalo wings hotter than ever, and the staff is more passionate than ever. If you haven’t done so recently, now is the time to (re)visit BrewDog Brussels!
It can be quite frightening when upon entering Caberdouche, you see big tanks of Stella below your feet in the pits of hell where they belong… Or maybe it is just a floor window offering a glimpse of the the beer cellar of the bar? Luckily, there’s quite a bit more on offer, among which a dedicated Brussels Beer Project tap, and a couple of beers from Tiny Rebel, that not quite so tiny anymore Welsh brewery, that seems to become more available in Brussels every passing day.
The latest brewery in the Brussels region to open their doors, is Nanobrasserie de l’Ermitage. You can even take that quite literally, since every Friday and Saturday afternoon and evening, everybody is welcome in the brewery’s pallet and keg decorated, but cosy taproom to try their beers, and have a (guided) wander around the brewery. Beer lovers already found their way to Anderlecht to visit nearby Cantillon — less than 200 meters away — but now they have a reason to stay after the last lambic of the day is served!
UPDATE: The shop in Jette has closed, but Fermenthings moved in with La Source, now mainly focussing on workshops and fermented food.
Beer is the — sometimes very beautiful — result of fermentation, but so are coffee, cheese, cider, kombucha, miso, and many other delicacies. At Fermenthings, you’ll not only find many of these products, but also the necessary tools and ingredients to make your own at home. Beer — from Belgium and far abroad — features heavily in the store, and we’re not sorry about that at all! Quite a few of those beers are even chilling in a fridge, so you can have a taste, before stocking up on beer and other fermented products.
We were a bit hesitant to write about JeanBon on our blog: there was only one beer in the fridge, and it wasn’t even a great one… However, the delicious baguettes made more than up for this shortcoming. On the store shelves, there was a choice of better beers available — like a Geuze Boon, or Bertinchamps‘ La Prose — some of which would have paired nicely with our lunch in the windowsill. Could you please put some of those beers in the fridge as well, Jean?
The Malting Pot has been around for quite a while, and as far as we know, it was the first beer shop in Brussels specialised in foreign beers. After the opening of other shops more conveniently located for us, we neglected Malting Pot a bit, quite unrightfully so! Today still, the small corner shop offers a great selection of foreign beers, without forgetting Belgian breweries like De Ranke and De Dochter van de Korenaar.
For the first anniversary of our blog — today — we wanted something special. And what would be more special than the mekka for the beer tourist, the Cantillon brewery? Only open five days a week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday) and just until five o’clock in the afternoon, and very busy at times, you’ll have to plan your visit to the brewery-cum-museum carefully. However, an impressive list of Cantillon beers, some of which you thought would be long lost, will be your reward!
UPDATE: Seems to be closed. A note said for renovations, but they hadn’t been open on the advertised hours for months before…
The former post office in the Central Station is finally in use again! Not for any postal needs of course — who still sends letters these days? — but for a bite and and a beer. Brasserie 28 will — eventually — not only serve 30 different draught beers and even more on bottle to consume in the bar, but everything is — or very soon will be — available to take away. Having a “train beer” when travelling from Central Station suddenly became interesting!
It’s quite nice to have a brewery with a little shop only a few minutes’ walk from home, to provide us with a steady supply of freshly bottled beers. Add a real taproom open in the evening — actually quite a rarity in Brussels — and growler filling station, and visits become more frequent and lengthy. The one thing saving us from spending too much time and money at Brussels Beer Project, is that they’re not open every day: only on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, from 2 to 10pm. When you happen to be in the neighbourhood within those hours, don’t hesitate to have a seat on one of the beer crate stools with the hissing malt bag cushions, and taste their newest experimental brew, or one of the guest beers.
UPDATE: Moved to Tour & Taxis, and added their Zennebar taproom!
On this blog, we’ve mentioned Brasserie de la Senne several times. For us, it’s always a reassurance to see their beers on draught in a bar, and a good indication somebody made at least some effort to put together an interesting beer list, including a selection of local products. It was high time we headed to Molenbeek and paid the brewery itself a visit!