Belgian Beer News
Professor Jo Swinnen: Halfway between tradition and innovation
LEUVEN - Our passion for a good brew in the glass can make us forget that brewing beer is an important economic activity but Professor Jo Swinnen of Leuven University takes us back to reality. In his book, “The economics of beer” (Oxford University Press, 2011), the professor and a slew of international colleagues describe how the beer landscape as we know it has developed as a result of the laws of economics. Jo Swinnen takes an interest in nutrition, agriculture and trade. Since 2009 he has been regularly organising conferences around the world on beer and the economy. The next one will be held in Seattle, USA in June 2015. “One of the things we will be looking at is how the industry organises itself on a global scale, the evolution of consumption patterns and how the brewers respond to this,” he explains...
The onward march towards conflict: First World War Centenary (7)
YPRES - By the 1870s the once-all-powerful Ottoman Empire was crumbling. For centuries the Muslim Turks had ruled their subject Christian states with an iron fist and after the subject states began to show signs of unrest, no mercy was shown. On numerous occasions Russia had intervened, ostensively on behalf of its Christian brothers and sisters and in 1878 scored a decisive victory in a war against Turkey. An ulterior motive of Russia was that it was very anxious to gain access to the Mediterranean Sea from its Black Sea ports and at the subsequent Treaty of San Stefano, Russian influence was expanded throughout the Balkan region. Political Unrest Otto von Bismarck called a Congress in Berlin where the Treaty of San Stefano was considered. The European powers felt that Russia was quite strong enough already and as a result Russia came away feeling cheated...
Sven Gatz, Managing Director of the Belgian Brewers
BRUSSELS - Open Sesame. I disappear through the archway of the imposing 'Brouwershuis', one of the architectural pearls of the Grand Marché in Brussels. This prestigious location – the Brewers’ House in English - is home to the Federation of Belgian Brewers, or in short, the Belgian Brewers. I have come to see its Managing Director, Sven Gatz. In a previous life he was a politician and worked for the Department of Social Services; now he looks after the interests of the brewing industry in Belgium. A balancing act “Can you do this job without having a passion for beer?” I ask him straight off...
Brewing magic: Cuvée du Château
INGELMUNSTER - Brewing always involves just a little bit of magic. One brewer expressed it as follows: “We put the ingredients together and wait for the result”. But we think there is more to it than that. As a brewer, you are forever tweaking the result. And the experienced ‘tweaker’ is also guided by the scientist. This is how the Cuvée du Château, made by the Van Honsebrouck brewery, was born...
An ode to the Belgian chocolatier
ANTWERP - Belgium and chocolate, a long-standing marriage like no other. Belgian chocolate is a mark of quality. If Belgium does have an image abroad, it is one of culinary enjoyment. Classics such as beer, chocolate, chicory, sprouts and the famous Belgian (not French!) ‘frites/frieten/fries’ spring to mind immediately. For many years Leonidas has been selling ‘freshly made Belgian chocolate’ made in Brussels, as this is the city where the praline was born. Leonidas now has a presence in around forty countries with fourteen hundred stores (1.400!), half of which are in Belgium and France...
GENVAL - It’s 1909 when John Martin, a Brit, makes his home in Antwerp, earning his living by provisioning sailing vessels. Before long John’s deliveries are heading onto the ships of the Red Star Line, ... [ more ]
NAMUR - At the 6th edition of the Brussels Beer Challenge, hosted this year by the city of Namur, Belgium once again lived up to its cast-iron reputation as one of the most important beer countries in the world. ... [ more ]
STEENHUFFEL - The annual hop harvest at Palm Belgian Craft Brewers is truly a festival of and for the people. We survey the busy crowds on the last Sunday in August in the hop field in the shadow of the ... [ more ]
VLEZENBEEK/DILBEEK - It is often said that lambics are only for those with an experienced palate. At Brouwerij Lindemans, one of Belgium’s favourite brewers of this traditional style, they beg to differ. ... [ more ]
KORTRIJK/BELLEGEM - It was in 1892 that Brouwerij Omer Vander Ghinste opened for business in Bellegem, a village near Kortrijk in West Flanders, close to the French border. Since then, countless... [ more ]
The Gentse Strop, introduced in 2011, is one of Brouwerij Roman's most popular beers, and a reminder of the historic ties between the cities of Oudenaarde and Ghent. Just what are ... [ more ]
Beer Tourism Newsletter Signup
Enter your name and email address on the right and click "SignUp" to join.