Imported beer can come from many corners of the globe, but some of the best in the world consistently hail from Belgium. Touted as possibly the best beer city in the world, Brussels and its surrounding areas have been churning out some of the most legendary concoctions for hundreds of years. These are a few accessible varieties that everyone should give a whirl. Don’t be scared, it’s only beer!
Saison Dupont – Impossible to leave off the list is this delightful saison, or farmhouse style ale from Brasserie Dupont in Tourpes-Leuze, Belgium. Unmistakable in taste and presence, this is noticeably cloudy with a huge, frothy head. Herbs, fruit, yeast, and some tartness shine through in taste, as this is an ideal saison for beginners to try.
Piraat Ale – From the world renowned Brouwerij Van Steenberge in Belgium comes the boisterous, golden Belgian IPA known as Piraat. Explosive hops, juicy fruit tones, and a dry, peppery finish make this one of the better IPAs to come out of this region. At 10.5% alcohol, this Piraat will steal your soberness by then end of the bottle.
Houblon Chouffe – Possibly the most popular Belgian style IPA in America comes from Brasserie d’Achouffe at a slick 9.0% alcohol. Pale golden colors with a fluffy head, this brew’s allure begins before you even take the first sip. Citric hops, bitterness, and notes of herbal flavors permeate the taste buds as this unique IPA warms you inside and out with its incredible taste.
Duvel – One of the most recognizable and relatively common Belgian strong pale ales throughout America and Europe is unmistakable in its stocky 330 mL brown bottle. Malt, yeast, and bitterness all join forces to generate a near unbeatable dry, crisp taste. Warming potency at 8.5% alcohol makes this a heavy duty beer which is meant to be savored and enjoyed.
Corsendonk Abbey Brown Ale – A dark, cloudy Belgian dubbel style brew originally created by the Corsendonk monks. Grains, yeast, and touches of fruit dominate the flavors, as the somewhat mild 7.5% alcohol (at least by Belgian standards) becomes slightly apparent. This is truly a one-of-a-kind beer from a brewery which has existed from hundreds of years.