Tag Archives: Belgium

Dinant, Belgium

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What’s up everyone – I just wanted to share a few photos of R and my latest tour of another interesting Belgian town, Dinant.  Dinant’s mostly known for being the early home of Adolphe Sax, the dude who invented the saxophone.  It’s also known for a bridge, a church, and a fort atop a cliff (sounds like just about every European town I’ve been to).  But we went to Dinant only because growing up, I was really into music – particularly playing my alto sax.  Jazz band, the wind ensemble, jam sessions with old high school buddies – I even composed a complete jazz piece for my band that was performed at our final concert.  I still have my old horn and don’t get to playing it as often as I like – but I had really been excited to visit the birthplace of the saxophone since the moment I (surprisingly) knew it came from Belgium.  Anyhow – I’m glad I got to check this one off my list…

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Overlooking the bridge from the fort

Overlooking the bridge from the fort

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The Dinant riverfront

The Dinant riverfront

Some street art

Some street art

 


Best meal I ever had

R and I went out to try this new restaurant the other night, and man alive did we get more than we hoped for.

The Brasserie Bavaria in Brussels is where we went, thanks to a recommendation from a colleague of R’s.  I’m telling you right now…. it was THE BEST MEAL I’d ever had in my life.  hands down…. can’t beat it.

So if you’re looking for some good Bavarian food- head to Brussels!  haha..

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We started the night off right with some drinks – it was the first bar in Europe we’ve been to that served R’s martini in a martini glass.  Like that’s asking a lot…lol

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I ordered the house special – the Koning Ludwig Weissbier – voted world’s best wheat beer in 2008, I think I read.  Damn what a good beer.  Highly recommended if you ever run into it.  It was perfectly hazy and smooth, served in a nice tall .5L.    Very delicious..  it’s making me thirsty again just thinking about it.

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For dinner, I had a steak with peppercorn sauce, R had the house schnitzel, served with roasted potatoes.  Holy **** the food melted in our mouths.  I think we were hypnotized and forgot to take photos, but then again the presentation of the food was quite simple, just like a home-cooked meal.  (lol) It was funny getting ready to eat; we could hear the chef in the kitchen beating the living hell out of the steak he was about to whip up to turn into R’s schnitzel!  He was really going to town, but it paid off!

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L’ambience etait extraordinaire….. HAHA

After dinner I ordered a random beer off the menu… ahhh I kind of regret doing that.  Wish I would’ve ordered another wheat beer, cause what I got was a classic pilsner..  Flavorful, but just plain for my taste.  It’s the Warfsteiner pilsner.

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That’s about it for this post.  For the best food ever, hit up this restaurant in east Brussels, and enjoy!

Barbar

2. Barbar – Lefebvre Brewery, Quenast, Belgium

The second beer I’m displaying this week is another unique Belgian beer – a strong pale ale (8% abv) by the name of “Barbar” brewed in the Walloon region of Belgium.  I love this style of bottle – it’s sort of ‘corked’ by a rubber stopper that is held in place by a metal contraption that sort of reminds me of a puzzle.  The metal is leveraged perfectly to seal the stopper in place and probably works better than just a metal cap.
The beer pours a gold color and is nice and clear.  Foamy head..
First taste: sour, sharp edge.. yet tasty.
After flavor: the honey really sets in and rounds out the edge perfectly.  Really nice tasting beer.  R liked this one a lot 🙂

The alcohol content didn’t sway me at all from finishing this beer off quickly.  Despite the sharp taste at first, the flavor really smoothes out in the end – probably thanks to the honey.

I’d give this thing a 7/10 for my own personal preference, only because I’m biased towards more hop flavor in my beers.  (Back home I was crazy for IPA’s).  But Lefebvre’s Barbar is really worth trying – and I’m really curious how this beer turns out on tap.
Until next time…

De Verboden Vrucht / Le Fruit Defende

Here’s a list of the beers that I’ve tried around the world, and my stab at giving them all a decent review.  I will be neither scientific nor sappy with any of my reviews; I’ll just leave my best biased opinion.  I’ll keep a running list, so standby for updates.  Cheers, everyone 🙂

1. De Verboden Vrucht / Le Fruit Defende – De Kluis Brewery, Belgium

The beer pours with a dark caramel color, thick head with a swampy sediment at the bottom.  I realize the glass in the photo isn’t the proper medium to be drinking this beer out of, but ordinarily it is served in a “goblet” style glass.  It is very light and crisp at first, and sweet.  After a second, the true ale flavor and high alc. % sets in.

I read a review online about this beer and some person said “ginger bread cake, plum, and raspberry scone with a clove hit”  LOL that’s getting too much into the weeds for me.. Yeah the beer is a bit fruity tasting and you can pick up on a little bit of honey, but overall this is just a strong ale, and I’d recommend it.  I’ll try to find this on tap and provide an update.

Strong flavor… I give it a 7/10 for my personal taste preference.

Moving out of Brussels

R is here writing today – it’s my first post.

It has been more than a week now since we moved out of our Brussels apartment, and relocated in the beautiful country side in Belgium.

After a year living in Brussels, life  started to become daunted. Brussels has a few things to offer, like any other major city of course, but what it’s known for becomes boring and repeatable after only a few weeks of living there.  It’s not like any feeling I have ever experienced in any other major city. Eventually, the list of cons became way longer than the pros.   That’s when we started to think that maybe there was another part of Belgium that we might enjoy more, and that offered the same (maybe more) opportunities but with less of the pollution, claustrophobia, and stress.  Don’t get me wrong- I’m speaking as a former resident of Brussels and not as a tourist. If you are ever in this part of Europe, definitely pass through for a couple days and see all of the best Brussels has to offer; entering the Grand Place for the first time is a breathtaking experience, especially on a sunny day.

I know, foreigners life in a foreign land can be a tragedy more than a comedy.. But it was a life-learning experience living in Brussels and was full of comedies with a few tragedies.

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Our Brussels Favorites

IMG_2547I wanted to share with you all places that R and I “frequent” and like the best in Brussels.  More of a normal-life sort of post.  Enjoy.  

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Random Scenes from Brussels

Hey everybody.. here’s some random photos of Brussels we’ve taken over the past few weeks.. no story or narration to any of it, just randomness 🙂IMG_2476

Overlooking the Old City

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1 of 8: Westmalle Abbey

A BEER POST!!  Finally!!

Sticking to the blog’s intended theme of travel and beer… we made a short trip yesterday to the Westmalle Trappist Abbey near Antwerp to check out the countryside and sample some of their famous beer.  It was a chill trip for a Saturday…
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Snowed in…

Here’s some photos of around our apartment, here in Brussels.  We were thinking of a road trip until the snow hit… so we ended up watching a lot of zombie movies, taking turns scarin the crap out of each other 🙂  Oh, and we made a cheesecake!!!

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Vin Chaud on a Sunday

One of the most unique holiday seasons I’ve experienced so far has been in/around Belgium.  This past Sunday we decided to set out on foot and see more of our own backyard.

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