Wednesday, September 9, 2009

White, brown and fruity

When we think of Belgian beers, most of us think of Stella Artois. But in fact, there are approximately 250 different beers, and they are indeed DIFFERENT. For one thing, the alcoholic content can be very high, approaching that of wine. For another, there is a great variety of beers from ‘white beer’ to ‘red beers’ (Rodenbach was my favourite) and many dark beers, some of which are quite sweet. During my trip, I tried many different beers, but for me the most interesting were some of the fruity beers, yes FRUITY beers.At first, the idea seemed very odd, but I started to develop a taste for them, especially Kruik. I also enjoyed some of the trappist beers from the Abbeys, which have been made since the middle ages. The most famous include Chimay, Rochefort, Leffe and Affigem and I am keen to see3 if they are readily available in Canada…although I suspect they'll be at a greater price.Beer in a Belgian cafe or tavern generally costs around 2.50 euros…however, a typical serving is smaller than what we are used to.... 25 cl or 33 cl.However, one evening in Brussels, my new best friends at the next table convinced me to start the evening off with a 750 cl bottle, and afterward we tried some of their other favourites Fortunately, it wasn’t a long walk back to the hotel.

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