The Best of Brugge
Tourists flock to Brugge to admire its canals and pretty Grote Markt, or market square. A town full of character and pride, it's decidedly deserving of its UNESCO status.

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Half Past at Half Moon

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I'll admit it, I'm a beer geek. But the words about to dance off this page won't be littered with grain, hop, malt and brewing techno-babble. My goal is boost your beer brain on the biology of Belgian beer from one of the oldest purveyors on the continent.

The Half Moon has been doing beer since the dawn of man... Ok, maybe not quite that long but sometime around the 16th century they were doing home brewing here under "the moon" moniker until a family feud split the business creating the downsized "half moon." Brugge Zot is the only beer still being brewed onsite, and this blonde ale has a drinkable profile with a fruity finish. Much of the historical infrastructure and equipment are intact and make up the brewery tour which is worth the wait on your first visit. Being a veteran, I head straight for the bar and see what's on tap. There are seasonal selections celebrating flavors of the harvest and local customs. They usually have the "stong beer" Straffe Hendrik - a bitter tripel ale that packs a 9% alcohol rating. The one beer to have when you're having only one.

The food is typical pub grub with cheese boards and sausage plates. The atmosphere is a mix of festive and beer centric, with tables of beer tasters lining up and comparing the offerings. Every beer has a different kind of glass so you need not worry about confusion, at least not during the first round. After that, all bets are off.

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by Jay Rymeski
AFAR Local Expert
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