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 65 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.
The café also has two rehearsal rooms and in-house recording studio! a TV-room to show live sport and 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
OSTEND - The Neville Brothers come bursting out of the musical wallpaper. Just for a moment or two, café Manuscript in Ostend has been shipped to the shores and swamps of New Orleans. ... [ read more ]
OSTEND - A cosy, relaxed atmosphere and happy expressions on the faces of beer lovers from all around the world greet me. This is, above all else, what strikes me when I visit the first ever North Sea ... [ read more ]
OSTEND/OOSTENDE - We witnessed it with our own eyes. There was more than just one solitary message in a bottle washed up on Ostend beach. Far more than that... an entire armada of bottles came ashore, ... [ read more ]
OSTEND - One year ago, the Manuscript café in Langestraat, Ostend, outed itself as a Beer Tourism Café. At first glance not a lot has changed since then. Regular customers remain loyal to their cosy l ... [ read more ]
BASECLES - You may not have heard of this little village, halfway between Tournai and Mons. Its former quarries are now filled with water where the black marble that adorns Cologne Cathedral was once hewn; ... [ more ]
MELLE - Alain De Laet, CEO and owner of Brouwerij Huyghe, is a firm believer in the power of the Belgian beer brand around the world. The success of the brewery speaks for itself, with Huyghe be... [ more ]
SOIGNIES - Belgians drink their beer from the correct glass. An abbey beer tastes so much better from a traditional chalice, a pils beer from a pils glass... Only in Belgium, will you come across such a wide variety of b... [ more ]
WESTMALLE - Time appears to stand still in a Trappist abbey like Westmalle. However, appearances can be deceptive - even here the latest technologies are quietly creeping in. The abbey has an up-to-date ... [ more ]
Monks have made an important contribution to the success of Belgian beers. Unlike the majority of their historical contemporaries, they were literate, and thus able to document the... [ more ]
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