The Quest for the Holy Grain - Best Beer Bars
Belgium

 

 

 

Gollem
Suikerrui 28  
2000 Antwerpen, Belgium
+32 3 689 49 89

The main square in Antwerp is surrounded by Tea Rooms and bars. What caught my eye at Gollem was the sign that said "30 Drafts".
Not very large; Gollem seats about 10 at the bar, another 40 or so inside, and perhaps even more than that on the front patio.
Stairs lead to a table on the balcony.
Besides the 30 draft beers, they have well over 200 bottles in their bound beer menu, sorted by style.
Chalkboards surround the room with the beers listed alphabetically by brewer.
In exchange for a card, this Questor received some samples and lots of advice on various beers.
The kitchen is in the basement and food arrives on a small elevator at the end of the bar.
No eating this time, but the food looked good.

 

Cafe Le Lombard
Rue du Lombard 1 Brussels 1000 , Belgium
+32(0)25408082

Brussels is a beer city where every bar is a beer bar.
All of the bars on other website's lists are in the tourist district.
Le Lombard is one of them.
Le Lombard has got the look and the feel of a neat bar, but it's kind of a tourist trap.
Tourists were the only patrons at what would be Happy Hour.
The beer list and the food menu were both kind of pricey.
They did, however, have a good selection of beer... about 10 drafts, some unique.
Le Lombard also offered about 20 bottles.
So many bars, so little time.

 

 

A la Mort Subite
rue Montagne-aux-Herbes Potagères 7
B-1000 Brussels
telephone: 02-513.13.18

The Mort.
A restaurant and beer bar with long communal tables that can hold scores of thirsty patrons.
Imagine the conversations here over the past eighty-plus years.
Sit in one of the Mort's well-worn chairs and feel the history seeping through your ass.
Better yet, drink from the six taps of house beers: gueuze, faro, kriek, framboise, peche and lambic blanche. We made several stops here and tried them all. All very good, except the peche which was better; one of the very best on-tap beers of any style we have ever tasted.
Seriously.
Period.
Get over your girly-beer fears and sip this liquid peach of a brew. You may never go back to whatever goofy hop bomb you've been swilling.

 

 

 

Delirium Cafe
Impasse de la Fidelite 4A
1000 Brussels
telephone: 02-514.44.34
www.deliriumcafe.be

We found the Delirium Cafe off an alley (Impasse de la Fidelite) about mid-day. We went downstairs; floors above would open later. It was not busy, rather quiet. I saw taps - 14 in all - nice.
In my best Questing-voice I asked if there was a beer list. "What language?" came the question.
English would be fine, thanks.
Now I knew we were in trouble. The list is a 233-page soft cover book (had to have it - 5 Euros). Ya see, according to our bartender, this place guarantees that the number of different beers on-hand and chilled will at least equal the current year.
That would be 2,010 on our visit.
Not to worry; we were told there were about 2,500 in the cooler if we were up to it.
Where to begin?
Ah, a Silly Pink Killer on-tap to start (and a few more later). Then, what's this, Cookie Beer? Gotta have that - served with a cookie, but not a repeat. And so it went. After an hour we met a young American couple doing the continental tour thing.
Later another couple from Long Island joined in.
There were rounds and rounds of never-before-tasted beers with too many consonants in their names for a Georgia boy to pronounce.
The place turned jack hammer loud and packed like a rush-hour subway.
My last legible note said something about this being a required ticket punch for all Questors.

PS - It was very dark outside when we climbed those steps back to the alley. Very, very dark.

PPS - Although you must walk the Rue des Bouchers to get to the Delirium Cafe's alley, avoid the rip-off restaurants that line both sides of the street.