BeNeLux Belgium Travel Thread

Discussion in 'Beer Travel, Events and Releases' started by stupac2, Oct 4, 2013.

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  1. DCLA

    DCLA

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    I went twice to Grote Dorst on consecutive weekends one summer and the first Sunday it was super mellow with only locals and we sat next to some and had a great time. The second Sunday there were a lot more "tourists" -- people ordering multiple bottles and creating a long line. It wasn't as nice but it was still okay since there's room outside to sit. You just never know how it's going to be but I wouldn't avoid it, especially if you've never been.
     
  2. Gaseous Clay

    Gaseous Clay

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    Flights are booked! Heading back to Belgium the first week of June if anyone wants to meet up and split bottles at Cantillon, De Cam, or 3F!
     
  3. LuxWanderer

    LuxWanderer

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    Have an extra ticket to see Greta Van Fleet in Brussels on March 27th if anyone is in town and interested in joining me. Cheers

    Headed up midday to open a couple bottles at Cantillon too
     
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  4. Gaseous Clay

    Gaseous Clay

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    So i've skimmed and read most, if not all, of this thread and I still havent been able to answer a few questions.
    Does anyone have any experience getting to and from Girardin and/or De Cam without a car? (I am aware that Girardin is to-go only).

    I remember Uber being pretty easy to get in Brussels so I suppose I could take Uber to each location, but if I were to do that would it be possible to get an Uber back into town once I was dropped off?

    Im not sure how doable Girardin will be, but I do want to go to De Cam as I have yet to go. The ideal plan would be to do De Cam during their open hours, dinner at DHVL, and then take the train back to Brussels. I will likely skip Grote Dorst as I will be traveling with my partner who isnt a big lambic enthusiast (yet), but if Uber seems doable in the countryside I may try to squeeze that in as well. Am I being a bit too idealistic here?
     
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  5. rrryanc

    rrryanc

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    Yes to Uber, otherwise it's a pain, at least for de cam. Last time I rented a bike, which was fun, though a hectic ride back to Brussels to return it in time. Public transportation involves busses, which I always hate when I can't speak the language, but if that doesn't bother you then maybe it's doable?
     
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  6. stupac2

    stupac2

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    Keep in mind with De Cam that you're at Kurt's whims. He was... less than enthusiastic when we went there. I've heard similar from other people. It was neat (although I was there with Raff so I think we got somewhat special treatment), but if it's logistically a hassle then I'd say don't bother, given the odds that you'll just be grumped out of there.
     
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  7. rrryanc

    rrryanc

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    Man, he was super nice to me, both times I've been.
     
  8. Gaseous Clay

    Gaseous Clay

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    Have you taken uber to de cem before? Were you able to grab an uber in Gooik back to Brussels (or anywhere other than Gooik)? Im not ruling out buses but they would certainly be a last option.

    That seems on par with Belgian service, being at the whim of the proprietor. I havent heard any negative reviews of people who have visited though. Given their hours I dont anticipate spending more than a few hours there, but the cafe is on my lambic bucket list and i'd love to grab some bottles of Lambiek and Geuze to bring home. Fair point though, and if it seems like a hassle I may end up skipping it in favor of Grote Dorst which seems equally as doable without a car.
     
  9. rrryanc

    rrryanc

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    No, I've driven and biked. I did look at Uber in the country and it reaches pretty far out from Brussels. I think you'd be fine.
     
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  10. stupac2

    stupac2

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    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    When I went he clearly didn't really want to be talking to us, and I've heard similar from other people. Our experience may be the odd one out but I wanted to warn him.
    Unless it's a new space I can virtually guarantee that, it would be hard to. Well unless Karel likes you and chats you up forever!
    There's a bus that goes close to Grote Dorst, at least, De Cam is a bit farther out in the country (at least IIRC, I was following a guy in our rental car and it sure felt out there) so I'm not sure that's as doable.
     
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  11. Gaseous Clay

    Gaseous Clay

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    I have a pretty charming face and an appreciation for the bagpipes, we'll see how it goes.
    Thanks for your help.
     
  12. SeaWatchman

    SeaWatchman

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    *Karel’s
    *Raf
     
  13. bostonvert

    bostonvert

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    It all depends how busy he is and it has occurred that he's not to keen on talking to much to foreign beer tourist and ends up chatting with me (local) but just keep in mind thats its pretty much a one man show and no matter how much you love beer and everything related I can imagine sometimes your just a little tired of it. And some visitors to tend to stick around for a very long time, remember there are no chairs or anything, you pretty much stand around and watch him work.

    When would you be visiting De Cam? You can skip the cafe next door, not worth the visit anymore. Try this place instead, one of my local bars and wonderful on a sunny day with great outside seating and its been there for decades.

    https://www.ratebeer.com/p/in-den-haas-gooik/32700/

    Save yourself the hassle and rent a car in Brussels, public transport is a nightmare especially on a sunday.
     
  14. Digita7693

    Digita7693

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    I get being annoyed, but I honestly don’t accept it. If you’re going to be open to having people in, people that are driving your business, suck it up and be affable. There are plenty of brewers w ten times the business who are friendly. Or, get someone to run visits for you who can smile once in a while.
     
  15. Gaseous Clay

    Gaseous Clay

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    Thanks for your insight, I really appreciate it. If I choose to visit De Cam it would be early Sunday afternoon before making my way to DHVL.

    A bit disappointing to read it may not be entirely worth the hassle of getting to and from Gooik. I may have to reconsider if taking Uber both there and back doesn’t seem entirely doable.

    Thanks for the recommendation for In den Haas.

    That’s fair. In some ways I have come to appreciate that attitude in European businesses. No bullshit, no frills, just their product and you can enjoy it if you like or eat shit if you don’t. Obviously don’t like being dogged out of an establishment but I wouldn’t demand an artist be nice while I buy their painting. I see the same for geuze. It’s a bonus when the brewer/blender is as nice as some are (e.g. Armand).
     
  16. bostonvert

    bostonvert

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    I really do think you should check it out, no matter how much of a hassle it is! I've been going for years and well De Cam is in my opinion the best lambic experience you can get, you pretty much walk straight into the warehouse and seeing those ancient Pilsner barrels in the next room is so cool! Best time to visit would be right when he opens up (3Pm)

    Took a buddy from NH to De Cam and went straight to DHVL after and well it doesn't really get any better. Shoot me a PM if you need any local help.
     
  17. loldor

    loldor

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    Does anybody know whether 3 Fonteinen, Cantillon or Moeder Lambic have different opening hours the Saturday before Eastern (March 31st)?

    Planning to spend the day and night in Brussels with some friends and it just occured to me I may have picked the wrong weekend.
     
  18. steinbbr

    steinbbr

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    Anyone free to split some bottles at Grote Dorst on April 8th? I’ll be coming in hot off the red eye and looking for some of you fine people to hang with!
     
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  19. primebeer

    primebeer Assistant to the Regional Moderator Contributor

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    Yes. Hit up me and evmo31. We have rough plans to go on the 8th!
     
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  20. steinbbr

    steinbbr

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