BRUSSELS, Belgium – If beer is to Belgium what wine is to France, then the Belgian capital has to have its temple of beer. There are wine bars in Paris that offer wine from all regions of France and also from abroad, so, in the Belgian capital, it shouldn’t be surprising to find a beer bar in Brussels belonging to the most fascinating ones on the planet, proposing the best Belgium can offer.
Delirium Village is an alley in Old Brussels dedicated to alcohol. This tiny and alcohol infused alley has a befitting name: L’Impasse de la Fidélité, which means, in French, “The Dead-End of Fidelity”. No joke!
Delirium Café, beer bar in Brussels: Let’s start with the beers
You have to know one thing: Delirium Café is the beer bar that offers the most beers in the world. That fact has been confirmed twice by the Guinness book of World Records. In 2004, there were 2004 beers available. Since then, the Delirium Café expanded its offer up to 3162 bottles and tapped beers, so this record has been updated.
The menu at Delirium Café is a 60-page magazine. It’s both surprising and impressive to find yourself in front of such a behemoth of a beer list!
The beers from Belgium take centre stage, the majority is sold in bottles and some are on tap, and prices are reasonable. The staff knows beer perfectly, so you can be sure they always know about the correct glass and the right pouring technique.
It would be too long to enumerate the list of beers I have tried at Delirium Café. But one thing is sure: Anytime I visit this beer bar, I have fun. I go there every time I visit Brussels.
On top of that, people are always very kind at the Delirium Café, so it is easy to make friends. And there is no better social lube than Belgian beer!
Delirium Café, beer bar in Brussels: The Floris Bar
In 2004, the first time I visited the beer bar Delirium Café, there was only the original bar in the basement. During my second visit in 2007, the Floris Bar had opened its doors to the public right across the street. The concept is the same as at the Delirium Café: offering only one product, at a maximum of variations, served the right way, with a staff that knows its subject profoundly. This time though, said subject wasn’t beer. The Floris Bar is an absinthe bar.
As everybody knows, absinthe is that drink that had been banned in Europe and the United States. One of its ingredients or, more accurately, the extract product of one of its ingredients was said to be hallucinogenic. Curiously, it has always been legal in Canada, although it was sometimes very difficult to find.
What makes absinth “hallucinogenic” is its alcohol content. Absinth has an alcohol per volume of about 70%.
So when we are with other absinthe drinkers, who probably already have a few beers in them, with the Delirium Café being so close and everything, the party can take a furious, wild and unpredictable twist. You know: exactly my kind of party.
Delirium Café, beer bar in Brussels: The Delirium Village
Since then, the Delirium Café, has expanded on the floor above. The new place is called the Delirium Taphouse. It offers several beers on tap, as well as a more generous space.
On top of that, there is a room on the top floor that can be rented for weddings, team building events for companies, etc. This place is called the Delirium Hoppy Loft and is specialised in beers from microbreweries from all over the planet.
But that is still not all of it.
If this system works for beers and absinths, why not for other kind of alcohols?
Today the Impasse de la Fidélité is busy with bars of the Delirium Village group. Everybody can find something to quench their thirst.
The Delirium Monasterium – decorated as a Roman Catholic monastery – is dedicated to vodkas.
The Floris Garden – styled like a pirate ship – has only rums.
And the Floris Tequila – decked in genuine Mexican knickknacks – offers mescals and tequilas.
It is not hard to imagine that one single blog post cannot do justice to the Impasse de la Fidélité.
The atmosphere in that back alley at night is not hard to imagine. Can you?
I will come back. Every time I am in Brussels.
Impasse de la Fidélité 4, 1000 Brussels