No, not High Life. Lambic. And I title this directly from the half tour guide’s mouth. Half tour guide because when we walked in, the guy asked us if we wanted to sign up for the tour that was leaving in five minutes…in English, no less. Well, yeah! Perfect. After he gathered our group, we got a short intro about the *beer stuff, he handed out pamphlets and told us the numbers on the path correspond to the numbered descriptions in the pamphlet. Uuuuuh? So, half tour guide.
We love a good walking/drinking tour, but we weren’t in the mood to read paragraphs about each station in the dark. So, we made the loop around the brewery pretty quickly and collected our beers at the end. Yes, I was afraid we’d look like the alcoholics rushing to get to the booze, but we were definitely not alone from our group. Half tour = just a trip to the bar. We ran into a friend that J and I used to work with in Dallas who now lives in Madrid..Life, you small. Then we picked up a Gueuze, Kriek, and Rosé to go and went on our merry way. Definitely check it out if you get a chance. It’s way cool. We plan on bringing you A&JMcG!
*beer stuff: In 1900, the Cantillon family founded the Brussels brewery. Today, the process hasn’t changed and it’s the only brewery still in the city. Ingredients: raw wheat, malted barley, and three-year old dried hops. The transformation inside the barrels takes one to three years to finish brewing. Sheesh. And in the fruit flavored beers, the sugars in the fruit mix with the yeast causing bubbles, making it the Champagne of Beers. Bam!
Happy 2013 friends! I hope you got to enjoy some relaxation and time with favorites. J and I took off on the road to see more of Europe. We spent Christmas Eve in Munich, Germany, Christmas in Austria, drove through Lichtenstein to Switzerland on J’s birthday, and France on the way home. As busy as that sounds, it was one of the most relaxing and enjoyable vacations imaginable! No flights to crazy cities, no coordinating schedules, no hurrying at all. Just a week and a half together (that’s like 280 hours of uninterrupted A & J time!) doing and going where the breeze took us.
First up: Munich (or München in German..important when you’re driving and looking for ‘Munich’ signs that aren’t there). The city’s motto is “Munich likes you.” It seemed like the cleanest city we’d ever seen. The Marienplatz (their central square) was filled with Christmas market booths and drinkers at 11am. We took a walking tour of the city since we heard such great reviews about it – ‘best walking tour in Europe.’ It lived up to its name. And free…bonus points.
more Spaß after the jump
We had our first visitor to Brussels this past weekend. And ready or not, we became tour guides. Mark took a break from the Dallas heat to tour around Europe. Here’s a little synopsis of the weekend’s festivities..
First stop on the Tour de Belgium: Grand Place.
The Grand Place is decked out for Christmas. The controversial techno tree is in full ‘bloom.’ And the Christmas markets surround the smaller streets. We ordered moules frites and covered the tourist part of the visit. Then, ended the night in Place Flagey.
The next day: Military museum.
The Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and Military History occupies part of the Cinquantenaire. The aviation exhibition boasts one of the largest aircraft collections in the world. It’s located in the coolest wing…ba da ching!
Then, we road tripped over to Dinant, Belgium. Birthplace of the saxophone and home of the Leffe Abbey. Oh, and apparently an ostrich farm. Definitely on the list for a full weekend trip.
We took the tour of Maison Leffe, which was everything but the actual brewery. We left very impressed, mostly because of the interactive smell machines and Leffe glasses we received as gifts. Although the beer history and learning how to pour a perfect glass was probably the boys’ favorite, I loved the interior of the dining room. So chic for such an historical, quaint town!
On sunday, we took off to the Parliamentarium. One of the coolest buildings of our lives.Our Croatian friends showed us that there is actually vin chaud in the world that we enjoy and spoiled us at their home. The weekend ended in Place Jourdan, sans frites…not kidding.
Not too shabby for being 3 month locals.