#153 – Tripel de Garre

#153 - Tripel de Garre

Size: on cask

ABV: 11.5 %

We started our Saturday evening on the tiles in a highly recommended bar, wedged into a tiny alley, just a stones throw from the main square in Bruges. The Staminee de Garre in fact sits on the shortest road in Bruges, De Garre, and it took us more than a little while to actually locate the place. Once we did however, we found it even more difficult to leave.

Our visit was largely down to the dramatic owner of the guesthouse in which we were staying. On our arrival he had welcomed us with a free round of Brugse Zot’s (#36) – the staple beer of Bruges, and I was keen to see whether he had any more adventurous taste in beer than the Zot. He pulled us closer in a conspiratorial huddle, looking sheepishly around for witnesses, and told us in a hushed whisper of this bar in town, that serves a beer so strong, that they have to ration you. He claimed it was his favourite beer, and was gone as if in a puff of smoke. He was back two minutes later, armed with a map and a pencil, and thus our plan for the first drink of the evening had been hatched.

It was a small intimate bar, set on two rustic floors, which creaked with character every time you lifted a foot or moved on your chair. It was completely packed on arrival, yet within minutes we had squeezed into a gap upstairs, and were ordering the special house beer. The Tripel de Garre is only available here, although is brewed especially for the bar by Van Steenberge. It is a potent 11.5%, and the thick orange coloured brew is served up in a unique thickset goblet, which serves to preserve the wonderful thick white frothy head. As if that wasn’t enough, each beer is accompanied by meaty chunks of the house cheese, and enough celery salt to dry out a table full of beer stains.

All in all, I look very fondly back on this beer. As a strong fruity thick sweet beer it was always going to score highly for me, but to drink this in a great bar with family helped to make the occasion. It is often true that a good beer tastes even better in the right atmosphere. Even my old man, who is a bona fide English ale drinker couldn’t argue with this one. We were all able to neck a couple each before we headed off to dinner, and so were unable to put the rationing to the test. I am reliably informed that the limit is 2 or 3 Tripel de Garre’s per person – although I am sure in these hard financial times, that the bar staff might avert their eyes once in a while.

To find the Staminee de Garre, click here

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6 Comments

Filed under 8, Abbey Tripel, Van Steenberge

6 responses to “#153 – Tripel de Garre

  1. Jonathan

    Ah, the very first beer I drank on my first trip to Bruges (and Belgium) a couple of years back. De Garre is probably my favourite Bruges bar and I completely agree with what you say about the meeting between beer and location.

    De Garre gets it absolutely “right” in terms of the beer/atmosphere axis and it is an exercise in understated classiness. I’m not a classical music fan per se but I would rather have that as my background music compared to inane pop music of someone else’s choice. Classical music is much harder to offend and annoy with.

    And such a lovely beer, beautifully served. Makes me feel all warm just thinking about it! :-)

  2. Pingback: #154 – La Trappe Quadrupel « The Belgian Beer Odyssey – 1 to 1000

  3. Dan F

    Just back from a weekend in Bruges and found this blog – De Garre is incredible, our hotel recommended it and we had over several sessions, a number of glasses of the Tripel and Gulden Draak – the staff are also great at recommending beers to try.

  4. Good Man.. I cant wait to go back and try this beer again with a load of cheese

  5. can I ask how much a pint of the house beer costs?

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