Antwerp Belgium

 

To many, Antwerp Belgium is THE place to have a beer adventure. Antwerp, considered the diamond capital of the world, is also home to many great beer bars, including the Kulminator, one of the top places in the world (if not THE top) to have aged belgium brews. Join Sandy and I as we explore the beer bars of Antwerp.

www.camra.org.uk  (The place to buy the “Good Beer Guide to Belgium” -  a must have if you visit.)


www.beeradvocate.com  (THE site for beer travel and info)

 

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Our favorite place to have a brew in Antwerp is the “Oud Arsenaal” located near Peter Paul Reuben’s original home. We rate beer places first and foremost for the atmosphere and “local” feel to them before how many beers they may have. We have visited this place a few times, and each time we felt welcome and got a sense that this was a local hangout, as we were many times the only tourists in the place. On our trip in December 2010, the Belgian Christmas beers were in full force, as you can see in the picture above. Nice!

We should note that in Europe, it is OK to share a table with someone else. Place look full? If there are a couple of seats open at a table of four, ask to sit down, you’ll be glad you did.

The pictures above find us at the world famous Kulminator. I had read a lot about this place and was excited to see it. While there, we watched a group of guys sample 5 different years of the hard to find Westvleteren beer. They had their tasting notes out and were going to town! Another group that we talked to was from Sweden “down for the weekend” and were enjoying some other brews. The Kulminator is famous for having aged beers. It would not be unusual to have a Chimay Blue from 1992 for example. While it was a great destination, Sandy and I prefer the local hang outs, so, believe it or not, it is not on the top of our list for Antwerp stops.

The photos above find us at the Cafe ‘t Miniatuurke, another great local hangout. Antwerp is the home to the De Koninck brewery, so this local brew was everywhere. Sandy preferred this beer to most others, and we found that this was the local’s favorite beer (not surprisingly I guess). Anyway, the distinctively splayed glass it comes in is called a “bolleke” (boll-uka) and if you ask for a “bolleke” you’ll get a De Koninck. Also of note was the way a keg was changed. Beer empty? Lock the door, pull up the mat, open the trap door, and down you go to make the change. Cool! We enjoyed this local hangout as we had a great conversation with the owner and others that ventured in.

The Waagstuk, shown above, was a neat little bar/restaurant off the beaten path. While there, I enjoyed their “Winterzeppelin” beer.

The Elfde Gebod (the “Eleventh Commandment”) is a place adorned with, well, you get the picture. We enjoyed a nice Orval and a bowl of soup on the cold December day that we visited.

Christmas beers anyone? On one of our trip to Belgium, we were there when specialty Christmas beers were available. Enjoy the pictures of these beers and...by the way....make your own beer adventure because “Beer Creates Friends”.