MEANDER THROUGH FLANDERS - DAY FIVE
Time for another field trip, and this time it was off to the coast, to De Haan and our first visit to the marvellous De Torre. I had been in touch with Daniel, the owner who posts sometimes on the Babble Belt, before we left, just to check opening times, etc. He had asked me which beers I would like on tap, so I enquired whether he ever had Fantome on tap. We had left for Belgium before receiving Daniel's reply.
Anyway, for those of you who have not yet been to De Torre, you should know that De Torre is closer to the tram stop than most station cafes are to their station - the stop is almost literally in De Torre's front garden, so it couldn't be more convenient. On arrival, the first thing I noticed was a Fantome sticker on one of the tap handles. How impressive was that? Well, it becomes more impressive when you hear that Daniel went all the way over to Soy, way over the other side of Belgium, especially to pick one up for me. Now, that is what I call service!
We were quickly greeted by Daniel and within five minutes I was in the cellar with him, inspecting his collection. There is lots of nice stuff down there, as you would imagine with a great list of about 150 beers, which is very nicely put together. De Torre is a mightily impressive café. Modern and airy, but very comfortable, with good, efficient service and a super range of beers. Every type of beer in Belgium seems to be well represented on Daniel's list.
We kicked off with a couple of draught Fantomes, then I had a Sante 3, also from Fantome, which I had found in the cellar. This is one of Dany's more eclectic presentations, which I would say could almost lay claim to being Belgium's first champagne beer. A Bloembier from Proef and another draught Fantome rounded off a memorable lunchtime session. We had the Lasagne Maison there, which was spicy and very, very tasty.
We enjoyed our visit to De Torre greatly and will definitely be back. Daniel is a real gentleman and runs a fantastic café, which I think all of us would enjoy greatly.
Back to Brugge by late afternoon, there was time for a quick stop in De Garre before dinner at Brasserie Georges and our second visit of the week to 't Zolder, where we chatted with Luc and had a 't Smisje Dubbel and an Avec les Bons Voeux.
Photos: Brugge, Gent, Aalst and De Haan
Photos: De Gans, 't Kroegske and Heeren van Liedekercke
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