Stokerij de Molenberg, which is brewery Het Anker’s whisky distillery, was our first visit on the second day of my trip to Belgium. Malt makes beer and malt makes whisky, so it’s no wonder that many brewers have thought about making whisky. However, the Gouden Carolus brewers, Het Anker, had a special reason to go into distilling.
The brewery in Mechelen dates back to 1471 when nuns brewed beer, but it was taken over by a genever distilling family in 1872. The fifth generation owner of the brewery, Charles Leclef, bought back and renovated the buildings of the long gone Distillery de Molenberg in 2009 and has started whisky production. Læs mere Stokerij de Molenberg – Gouden Carolus Whisky
Het Goudblommeke in Papier is a classic café in the heart of Brussels, a favourite watering hole of the surrealist movement in the 1920s. The name (La Fleur en Papier Doré in French) means The Golden Paper Flower, a poetic and very fitting name. The little café with it’s kitch/bric-a-brac interior is still a meeting place for artists and writers.
Friday around noon, a bus full of very excited beer writers arrive at the Lindemans family brewery. It’s the first stop of our epic tour of Belgium, and we’re here to taste some very exclusive spontaneous fermented beer. Not the sweet, pasteurized fruit lambic that makes up most of the brewery’s business, but the real thing, the real lambic beers. And as we’ll find out, we’re also here to experience a bit of magic from the brewery kitchen.
Our aperitif was Lindemans/Mikkeller SpontanBasil. An uncompromising collaboration beer mixing good Belgian lambic beer with crazy Danish ideas. The finished beer has further matured with huge amounts of fresh basil, the way you would usually add cherries to make a kriek, or raspberries to make a framboise. The aroma of fresh basil is definitely there, but the jury is still out on whether it’s “very interesting” or “too interesting”. Læs mere Lindemans – traditional lambic and business
I have just spent a wonderful long weekend in Belgian Flanders, visiting breweries, drinking great beer and enjoying wonderful beer cuisine. As I begin writing this, on the train from Gent to Brussels, I’m overwhelmed with impressions. The Belgian Family Brewers is an association of breweries with a long history and family ownership, but they are also very different, in size, style and goals. What they have in common is passion. They’re showing passion for their heritage and passion for their beer quality, before passion for empty story telling and bottom line results.
What I’m left with is a newfound respect for the history of some of these breweries. The Belgian beer landscape can be confusing with every brewery seeling their different beers under two, three, four or ten different brand names. Some brands with a long and interesting history, while others are invented/developed or bought up by big international corporations. How do I know which is which? Læs mere Belgian Family Brewers – generations of passion
I sidste weekend var jeg i München på en ølrejse der ganske vidst havde ølfestivalen Braukunst-Live i fokus, men som også bød på en god portion ølturisme i byens centrum. Her er seks tips, i form af fire steder der bør besøges og to steder der ikke behøves, hvis man er seriøs ølturist. München er ikke verdens ølcentrum. Det er ikke engang Bayerns ølcentrum, den titel tilfalder byen Bamberg, med både flere og bedre øl. Men München må være verdens centrum for ølturisme. Alene Oktoberfesten skulle sikre den titel.
Da vi ankom til München ved seks-tiden tog vi straks på hotellet som lå praktisk lige ved siden af Hauptbahnhof, satte baggagen, og samledes for at få aftensmad. Der var bestilt plads på Augustinerkeller, i kælderen hvor stemningen var spændt op til oktoberfestligheder. Der var orkester der spillede høj Oompah-disco a la DJ Ötzi, og der blev danset på bænkene. Akustikken i en gammel hvælvet kælder er ikke egnet til høj musik, og ingen arbejdsmiljøkontrollanter ville have godkendt lydniveauet. Læs mere Seks tips til ølturisten i München