Look carefully at the shape of the beer glass. Does it remind you of anything? If not, let me remind you that some of the best beers in Europe were actually brewed by monks. Does it ring a bell now?
Yup, the glass is shaped like the chalice and the wide top is thought to enhance the aroma of the beer.
I prefer to think this is the monks' way to reconcile their drinking habits with the straight and narrow path of their monastery life.
This is another small detail that you'll find interesting in your brewery tour at Brewery De Halve Maan ( Half Moon Brewery). Belgium has a patron saint for their brew ! Yup, this chappie, St Arnoldus of Metz (b. 580 AD, d. 640), is always placed discreetly in some corner of every brewery in town to gaurantee a successful and delicious brew.
He became famous after he started his
"Don't drink the water, Drink beer! "
slogan during the time of the plague. Hell, that is one campaign, I know my country, Singapore, will never adopt. Anyway, back to where I was saying, the old Saint wasn't asking everyone to pickle their liver during the time of sickness. Nope, St Arnoldus was concerned about the dangers of drinking unclean water. If truth be told, this God-appointed man accurately predicted that drinking polluted water caused illness and that boiled and processed water used for beer was a safer alternative. According to legend, he ended the plague when he submerged his crucifix into a brew kettle and persuaded people to drink only beer from that "blessed" kettle. He is also reported to have said:
"From man's sweat and God's love, beer came into the world".
I'll say "AMEN!" to that and "BOTTOMS UP!"
You'll definitely get a literal high while touring the Brewery De Halve Maan. Yup and that's not even from drinking the strong brew! Before your tour begins, the friendly chap at the ticket counter will tell you gleefully that you need to climb more than 200 steep steps to the top after you hand him 3.90 euros for your tour. Well, that's not such a bad deal, afterall, the view of Bruges is indeed panoramic and more scenic than the one at the Belfry Tower. Also, a cool beer (included in the price of your tour ticket ) is a rich reward if you do manage to climb down alive on those steep steps.
Brewery De Halve Maan is at
*Looking for the friendly chap at the ticket counter? He's behind the indoor bar.
If you ever do decide on go on a tour at the Brewery De Halve Maan ( Half Moon Brewery ), keep on your eye on small details, like the quaint advertisements that they keep in their small musuem upstairs.
This old ad caught my eye since it claimed that drinking beer was good for breastfeeding mothers. Yeah, way to go, the Flemish were way ahead of their time, man! I wondered how they carried this off, promoting beer and breastfeeding at the same time and not drawing flak from the public. Wasn't there a gigantic hue and cry in Singapore and the US when simple breastfeeding ads were shown? All that silly noise on too much emphasis on breasts just pales in comparison to this ad!
Oh yeah, just in case you need to know, there is a Flemish belief that drinking beer increases milk supply and provides nutrients for the mum. Haha, just let me know if you believe it.
De Haalf Maan is @ Walplein 26,
This is a great spot ....quiet at the time that I visited with the few people that participated in a bike tour with Quasimondo Bike Tours...we stopped in to have a refreshment...we discovered a GREAT pub with an assortment of over 130 types of beer...and a menu for food...
This is the oldest existing pub in Brugge and dates to 1515....Vlissinghe’s interior has been preserved with Epoque furniture, a Van Dyck armchair and beautiful lamps, portraits and porcelain displayed.You can sit indoors or pick a spot in the park like setting out the back door of the place...
This is a unique spot to stop and hide out from the crowds...its set in a obscure alleyway about a fifteen minute walk from the town center's Burgh...
Find the road between the Grand Markt and the Burg.
On the right hand side you will find a little alley called Le Garre. Venture down and up a flight of stairs to find our favourite beer spot - great range and good service
The "STRAFFE HENDRIK" family has been active since 1856.
The cooking- and brewing-cauldron, the cooler and the malt-store were the authentic working instruments for the brewing of "BRUGES STRAFFE HENDRIK".
On your tour you can enjoy a panoramic view of Brugge.
After the visit you can TASTE THE HOMEMADE BEER"......
Guided tours: 45 minuten, 3.70 Euros (a drink included)
April-September: daily from 11AM - 4 PM
October-March: daily visits 11AM - 3PM.
Through the year: by arrangement (min. 20 persons)
Address: Walplein 26 8000 BRUGGE
In de brew-pub "de brugse bierkaai" the beer is brewed in the house. Have a look inside and visit the brewery. Taste a "drietap" blond , dark and cherish beer. Mmmmm !!!Delicious !!!