How was the Brussels Beer Festival 2014
• How was the Brussels Beer Festival 2014
Today we tell about the scale of Brussels Beer Festival (Belgian Beer Weekend 2014), now the 16th time, traditionally held in the first weekend of September in the heart of the capital of Belgium - Brussels. Unlike many beer festivals in various European countries, the Brussels Festival is one of the most famous and serious, inspiring respect has only its organizational list. In addition to full support of the authorities of the festival in Brussels, the main organizer of the "Belgian Brewers Guild knight" (Knighthood of the Brewers' Mash staff) and "Belgian Brewers Association" (Belgian Brewers), which is one of the oldest and professional associations in the world.
Also, if you look at aggregate data on the number of breweries in the country (about 115) and produced beers (more than 2,400), it becomes clear that Belgium is seriously compete with other beer countries: the Czech Republic and Germany, with the demand for leadership .
Of course, in its scope, the Brussels Festival is not the German Oktoberfest (German. Oktoberfest) ... Central Brussels Grand Place is historically a very small and just not being able to accommodate a large number of breweries and visitors, but with each passing year, the number of participants and, consequently, beers, steadily and rapidly growing.
And if recent festival offers visitors nearly 400 beers from 30 breweries, but this year it was announced already 47 breweries (41 conventional and 6 monasteries that brew trappistkoe beer) from the provinces of Antwerp (Antwerpen), Brabant (Brabant), Flanders ( Flanders), Eno (Hainaut), Liege (Liege), Limburg (Limbourg) and Namur (Namur). The first day of the festival is traditionally held in the pompous official form and begins with the day of Friday's solemn service in the Gothic Cathedral of Saints Michael and Gudule (niderl Kathedraal van Sint-Michiel en Sint-Goedele.), Which commemorate St. Arnold of Metz (St. Arnould) - the patron saint of brewers. It is known that in the Middle Ages, Arnold encouraged his parishioners to replace the raw water, the source of diseases in the beer while reiterating: "From the human labor, and God's love, beer came into the world."
After the end of the festive Mass, the Knights of the Belgian Brewers Guild with the breweries begin a solemn procession towards the Grand Place, bringing to a symbolic barrel of beer. A little later in the same place, in the Gothic hall of the Brussels City Hall, held a closed ceremony of consecration of new members of the guild.
For all the rest of the public, the official opening of the beer weekend and tent camp begins at 18:00 on the area, and closed the first day of the festival at 21:45. It is worth considering that the entrance to the festival stops for 1:45 before the end of the event.
The next day, given the large influx of public, the festival opens with already 11 am and continues until 20:45. And thus the main event becomes a colorful costume parade Brewers at 14:00 on this day.
All kinds of historical carts with barrels of a particular brewery, as well as coaches with costumed audience through the streets carry a powerful and beautiful horse, heavy-duty, periodically cutting out horseshoes of cobblestones sparks. Brewery PALM Breweries.
The brewery Brouwerij OMER VANDER GHINSTE.
Brewery Brouwerij BOSTEELS.
Some breweries, such as Brouwerij BOSTEELS, famous beers "Tripel Karmeliet", "Deus" and "Pauwel Kwak", as well as the Brasserie de SILLY, participated in the parade also on historical cars Opel Blitz and the Ford Model T.
Brewery Brouwerij BOSTEELS.
Brewery Brasserie de SILLY.
A parade ends, as it should, all the same, on the historical main square of Brussels - Grand-Place, which has, in full, noisy fun and colorful festival.
On Sunday, September 7, the festival was launched at 11:00 am and already at once to the counter lined up a huge queue of people wishing to get to the beer festival.
It's time to talk about how all the same to drink beer festival of the best masters of Belgian brewing. By itself, the entrance to the festival is free for everyone, but here you can buy beer, only paying the seller a special internal currency, called "BBW crowncork", equivalent to 1 Euro, and represents a brand new beer lids. Minimum selling party caps - 10 pieces.
That is to buy these caps, and built a very long queue to the cashier of the festival or exchange, as you wish. Also need to pay an additional 3 Euros for the plastic zhetonchik - a kind of pledge for provided you brand a tasting glass. After returning glasses seller, he will return your badge and you can use it later in the neighboring tents.
At the entrance and exit from the territory of the festival on duty special volunteers who handed out brochures with the scheme of arrangement of tents, so that you can find your desired brewer easily. Also, these people may be asked, at the exit, open the backpack or bag, to make sure that you have not brought with them liked the glass. Unfortunately, such incidents happen and the same plastic zhetonchik, to some extent, cover such damage.
To the people it was easier to navigate over each tent has a sign with the name of the brewery, and there are special boards, which are specified beers offered for tasting, the mark of: bottle this beer or draft and its value in the covers.
The cheapest and widespread varieties were evaluated in 2 cover, more expensive 3, and the most exclusive in 4. To him usually traditionally include Trappist beer produced by the monks according to ancient recipes in six monasteries. Since I am not an expert in the field of beer and was not asked to try all varieties, Trappist beer spared me by.
Instead of it, I decided to see more familiar with the famous brewery Brouwerij DE RYCK, strictly storing the family tradition and is a repeated winner of various competitions and championships. Brewery from the village of Herzeliya (Herzele), which celebrated in 2011 its 125th anniversary, is named after its founder - Gustave De Rica, and is an honorary member of the guild of the Belgian family breweries.
Since I'm not a fan of the classic beer "for chips or nuts," I especially liked the banana fruit beer De Ryck Jules de Bananes, having an opaque yellowish-cream shade and very mild flavor. This is a great refreshing summer sweet beer that is best to drink somewhere on the coast in the shade of palm trees and a snack of fresh fruit. Brewery Alken-Mas from Varlos (Waarloos) - is the second largest brewery in Belgium and one of the oldest in the country.
to discover in the previous days, this type of Belgian beer as "Gez" (Gueuze), which is a mixture lambics different term exposure and passes a secondary fermentation in the bottle, we did not pass it . Very much we loved the refreshing sour taste.
This time the choice fell on another family brewery Brouwerij LINDEMANS. Since at this brewery also produces a type of Belgian beer, as a "lighthouse" "(Faro), representatives of the brewery were wearing branded clothes gastronomic brotherhood" Faro Order "(Ordre du Faro), founded by a small group of friends December 6, 1980 . Familia is engaged in advertising and propaganda Faro beer produced in the valley of the river Zenne (Senne) region Payottenland, since it is believed that the microorganisms of the places the most ideal for the slow spontaneous fermentation.
With regard to the Faro, it is sweetish beer, a beautiful amber color, which is a mixture of lambic beer with a very weak, as well as the addition of brown caramel and herbs.
There just costumed characters can not be found at the festival! For example, representatives of the picturesque brewery Brasserie DUBUISSON & FRERES offer to try the strongest Belgian beer (12% alc.) - Bush Ambree, special unique glass mica.
By the way, this brewery, known since the second half of the eighteenth century, I first met in Bruges, having bought beer for real trolls - Cuvée des Trolls. This sweet pale ale with a fruity aroma and notes of apricot, apple and lemon. beers are decorated in a mystical fantasy theme, the official website of beer has a nice cartoon animation. Adherence to traditional recipes, a complete rejection of modern preservatives and flavor enhancers - these are the principles that guide the brewery. Beer "Cuvée de Trolls" can rightly be called unique, environmentally friendly beverage.
Quite a few people at the festival can be seen in funny pink caps in the form of elephants. This brand symbol brewery Brouwerij Huyghe from Melle. It is also called Brouwerij Delirium Tremens because of its unique logo - a pink elephant. In 1988, beer was released on the label which were depicted stage appearance "delirium tremens" (from the Latin delirium tremens.) - "pink elephant".
But true happiness I felt when I found a tent, probably my most favorite Belgian beer (of what happened to taste) - Forestinne from the brewery Brasserie CARACOLE from the village Falminul (Falmignoul). The original "fantastic" beer series includes 6 items: Ambrosia, Gothika, Mysteria, Primoria, Nordika and Elixir. Each type has its own "Beer Fairy" and a special taste.
And if in January of Bruges I brought home Forestinne Gothika - moderately strong beer (. 7, 5% alc), with the aroma of black coffee and some toasted spices, but this time decided to drink Forestinne Nordika, characterized Scandinavian theme in the design. "Christmas" beer, which has a sweet fruity taste with spicy notes of anise and I really enjoyed it.
In any case, unfortunately, try all the beers at the festival is not possible ... I just do not have enough physical strength and resources, and we have come, after all, it has been scheduled yet extensive cultural program around Brussels. Therefore, drinking the last glass, we rushed to the exit, and turn all the cashier did not decrease ...
And that, apparently, some local official himself or burgomister.
In conclusion, we can say that the Brussels Beer Festival - it's a great way to try the best sorts and types of Belgian beers at once and in one place, as well as find their favorite beer.
Additionally, bypassing all the tents, you can get hold of a large collection of free branded "coasters" (stands for beer) logos breweries that will help you a memorable souvenir from the festival.