Established in 1991 and located in the heart of the “Montmartre” nightlife district of Ostend, this is a favoured hangout for beer and music lovers alike. The Manuscript is an authentic, character-packed “brown” Belgian beer café with a cozy, fun loving and hospitable atmosphere.
With their motto: “Be Nice or Leave” welcoming you at the door; this place is the Ostend, rock and roll version of Cheers.
After first working there for years, Glenn Rotsaert and his partner in love, life and business Vanessa Demeij took over the place in 2004 and have been running it with their organized band of misfits ever since. Special arrangements for birthday parties or other events are available on request.
Musically the Manuscript focuses on rock, blues and jazz. This café is nothing less than a miniature concert hall, live music gigs are hosted regularly and next to local bands one can see anything from The Delta Saints, The Goo Goo Dolls, Steve Conte to My Dynamite all appearing on stage.
And ask anyone who played there or ever attended, the atmosphere is always incredible. Check their Concert Calendar for upcoming live shows.
Beer, Food & More
The Manuscript has around 7 beers on draft and more than 60 bottled ones. It is not the most enormous selection but it is diverse and it continues to grow. The beer menu includes most Belgian beer types and pays a great deal of attention to Belgian specialty beers. They change their selection each month by removing and adding one beer and they always, without fail, have several Belgian Trappist beers in stock.
Next to the beer, we can highly recommend the house cocktail called “The Witch Queen Of New Orleans”. This devilish concoction is the Manuscript’s own creation and not to be taken lightly - it packs a punch!
Don’t expect to get a real meal here, this is a café. There are enough good restaurants to be found around Ostend to cater for that anyway. They can provide you with a small variety of snacks from home-made soup to cured sausages, just to keep you going...
The boss, Glenn, is a true music and New Orleans fanatic. He is currently active in two bands (Thin Line Men and Revenge 88) and played as a bass-player with Marky Ramone and the Speed Kings on their European, American (West Coast) and Japanese tours between 2000 and 2003.
Every year, on the last Monday of August they also organize the “New Orleans Roots Music Fest” which off course celebrates the culture of said American city with concerts and some delicious, live Cajun cooking.
Next to his own musical activities and interests, being a committed rock-and-roll dad and café boss, he is also the co-founder of a local organization called Muzine, which aims at supporting young talent in music and multimedia.
The café also has two rehearsal rooms and in-house recording studio! a TV-room to show live sport and indoor smoking room.
The 5th of November 2013 marked the opening of a specialty Belgian beer tasting and function room and the Manuscript was unveiled as the first official Beer Tourism Café in Belgium. You can now book a beer tasting for groups of up to 50 people, which can include Belgian beer and food pairing with local and seasonal produce.
Image Credits: © Christophe Brysse, BeerTourism.com and Danny De Wachter
Café Manuscript details
- Langestraat 23
- Contact and Connect:
- Opening Times:
- Number of Beers Sold: 75
- Average Beer Price: 3.00 €
- Payment Methods: Cash Only
- Languages Spoken: English, Dutch, French
- Pets Allowed: Yes
- Outside Area: Yes
- Capacity: 120
- Heated Terrace?: Yes
- Live Sports?: Yes
- Smoking Room?: Yes
- Wifi?: Yes
|Sunday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
|Monday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
|Tuesday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
|Wednesday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
|Thursday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
|Friday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
|Saturday||- - -||14:00 - Late|
Closes on Christmas Eve at 19:00 - but open on Christmas Day
Café Manuscript Blog Posts
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