Roman brewery Tour 2018
On a rare child free weekend in the short period between the road season and ‘cross starting, the Wife and I took a drive from Lincolnshire to the heart of Oudenaarde for a weekend of walking the hellingen and some food and beer testing.
We stayed at the beautiful Beans and Dreams coffee house doing all of the touristy stuff like eating steak and frites in the town square and working our way through some of the beers in the tiny little bar near the Ronde Van Vlanderen museum.
The first full day saw us take the steep little road out of town towards the Roman Brewery.
We had been booked on a tour which ironically saw us joined by one of the cycling clubs of Antwerp who wanted to ask me loads of questions about whether Chris Froome was asthmatic or not…
The tour guide took us to one side to explain politely that the tour was predominantly going to be in Dutch/Flemish but that he would try and keep us up to speed. He seemed impressed that a British couple were so keen to take the tour.
The buildings themselves were really old and impressive. You see this brewery regularly on TV footage of all the big classics in this part of the world and the giant stills were so well polished and the barrels stacked so neatly that you knew this was a class operation.
After the tour there was a tasting which I thought would be a couple of small glasses to try but this was 15 minute free bar… My wife handed me the car keys before trying a couple of tripels and a nice ruby.
Thankfully the pricing of the shop was such that we could fill the boot of the car (using Antwerp cycling club officials as extra pairs of hands) before heading back into town.
One of us grumpily and the other one groggily.
I will let you decide who was who.
What I will say is that everyone who is a lover of Belgian beers should make the time to take a tour. People are so proud of what they produce and so passionate about it. That comes across in everything they do and say.
The theatre in the presentation of the drinks, even in a free tasting show care for the drinks, it was magical.
Once this is over and we are free to move again, who’s up for a trip?