Monday, April 27, 2015

Europe Day 5: Belgium

So, it has been almost a year since I started posting about our trip to Europe...and I still haven’t finished.  Not much to say about that, but I’m ready to get back to it, so here I am.


On our fifth day, we checked out of the castle hotel and made our way through Luxembourg to Belgium.  Luxembourg was basically just your basic quick stop at a gas station:  lots of gummies, any cold (!!!) drink we could want, cheap cigarettes, and 50-cent bathrooms. ;)

Our first stop in Belgium was the Rochefort Abbey.  We couldn't go inside, but snapped a few photos outside.  It was beautiful and so peaceful.

Our second stop was just down the road at the Chimay Abbey, the location of another Trappist brewery.  We couldn't go inside their either, but we walked around the grounds a bit and then headed to their restaurant down the street.  

James and I each got the Trappist beer sampler and I had the Trappist cheese sampler (all of which is made at the Abbey).  Mom tried to order cheese fondue, but twice got a cheese sandwich...Dad got a grilled cheese that he still talks about.

We headed to our bed and breakfast next, the Brouwershuis connected to the St. Bernardus factory.  There was a little bit of trouble checking in (the front desk closes at 3pm and we did not have phones or internet service while we were there) but with some help from another guest, we got it sorted out, settled in, and headed to dinner at the nearby Sparhof Restaurant.  

The restaurant was beautiful inside and out and I loved the beef stew I got that was made with St. Bernardus beer.  :)

After dinner, we fully enjoyed the B&B's back porch and St. Bernardus-stocked fridge.  We were up until 1 am chatting with other guests and sampling all of the fresh beer.  

We were even lucky enough to be there on one of the brewery owner's rare trips!  Hans was hilarious and we really, really enjoyed getting to ask him questions and hear all about his family and how he got into the brewing business.  

We slept very well that night. :)

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