Tag Archives: Cafe Bebo

142. Maredsous Bruin

Since we’re at Café Bebo already, it seems like it would be rude not to see whether there’s anything else on the menu that may be of interest to us.

There is, of course, and it’s a strong, dark Abbey Beer brewed under the supervision of the Benedictine monks of the Abbaye de Maredsous, deep within the Walloon region, some distance south of Brussels.

Maredsous Bruin at Café Bebo, Brussel

We enjoyed the even stronger Maredsous Tripel at Lowlander back in London, but there’s something nice about finding a beer in its home country.

This is quite a different beer. The deep ruby brown colour is a giveaway, of course, as is a huge peppery aroma full of caramel and sinister dark fruits.

It’s lovely stuff too: rich, warming and packed with fruity date and raisin notes. The caramel is there in the flavour, but the beer isn’t oversweet. Instead there’s a satisfying, roasty coffee-like bitterness in the finish.

Maredsous Bruin is broadly similar to a Trappist Dubbel, such as the La Trappe Dubbel, though it’s darker, fuller bodied and a little stronger. Indeed, the respectable 8% ABV strength isn’t hidden, but really doesn’t need to be. This was always going to be a beer to take your time over and savour slowly. It would make a great winter or after-dinner beer, though sat in a Brussels café on a spring afternoon was just fine too.

Café Bebo, Brussels

I think that’s all of the beers we need from Café Bebo, but that won’t stop me dropping by any time I’m in Brussels. I’m rather fond of the place, and it’s been pleasing to finally work it into the blog.

A special word of thanks must go to The Beer Boutique, a cracking beer shop in Putney, London. My minimal tasting notes from the afternoon at Café Bebo reflect the fact that 24 hours researching beer in Brussels will take its toll on a chap. The Beer Boutique kindly got this one in stock at short notice, allowing me to cobble together something resembling a blog post. My thanks to them for that.

Facts and Figures

Brewery: Abbaye de Maredsous, Denée, Belgium
Strength: 8.0% ABV
Found at: Café Bebo, Place Rouppe, Brussels, Belgium
Serving: 330ml bottle

141. Silly Double Enghien Blonde

Allow me to take you to one of my favourite little Brussels cafés, this time one just slightly off the well-trodden tourist trail.

I have a bit of a soft spot for Café Bebo on Place Rouppe, about halfway between central Brussels and the Eurostar terminus at Brussels Midi, since this was the first place in Belgium that I ever had a beer. It was a Saison Dupont in February last year, and very welcome it was too as I started to get my bearings in an unfamiliar city, and began to realise just how out of my depth I was language-wise.

Bebo is essentially just a street corner café in the continental style, and tends to be frequented more by Bruxellois regulars than by gawping sightseers like myself. That it has a well-chosen, if compact, beer list and does the cheesiest croque monsieur I’ve ever tackled does not hurt at all.


There’s nothing particularly silly about Silly Double Enghien Blonde. Silly is a tiny village about 40 kilometres to the south east of Brussels, and is home to Brasserie de Silly, a small family-run brewery tracing its history back to 1850. One doesn’t tend to stumble upon their products too often and Café Bebo remains the only bar in which I’ve ever seen this one.

Double Enghien Blonde is a pretty typical 7.5% blonde beer in a broadly similar style to the De Dolle Arabier. It’s served here with the correctly-branded tulip glass, much as one comes to expect in this city.

Café Bebo, Place Rouppe, Brussels

There’s a big fat yeasty aroma, again not challenging expectations. That seems to be the theme with this one. If you’ve ever had a Belgian blonde beer such as the easily-obtainable Leffe, you know what it tastes like, though Double Enghien is of significantly higher quality.

My tasting notes from the day run to a few words: “standard Belgian blonde” and “a bit sweet”. Maybe I was tired, but back in London and sipping the bottle I brought home with me, I struggle to find a great deal more to say about it. I do detect some nice citrus notes though, in particular lemon zest, and chewy sultana fruit.

Either way, it’s nice enough, and was thoroughly welcome after a hard day trying to decipher the bewildering Brussels tram system, and several times almost learning the hard way that the green man at the pedestrian crossings in this city does not mean what you think it means.

Do be careful when crossing roads in Brussels.

Facts and Figures

Brewery: Brasserie de Silly, Silly, Belgium
Style: Golden Ales
Strength: 7.5% ABV
Found at: Café Bebo, Place Rouppe, Brussels, Belgium
Serving: 330ml bottle