We were invited along to meet Joris Brams and find out more about Heverlee, a new beer we had spied in The Hope on Waterloo Street, Glasgow. Joris Brams was born in Leuven near to the town of Heverlee and he explained, over a beer of course, how he came about finding out about Heverlee beer. The Abbey of the order of Premontre the original home of Heverlee has an illustrious history, it was established in 1129, more than 237 years before the Artois name emerged. When forced to close their production as brewing became commercial, part of the Abbey was demolished and the beer forgotten. The more Joris found out about this story, the more he wanted to do something. Working with the monks and with a local brewer, Joris used descriptions of the ancient beer to create Heverlee; a smooth pint that uses barley, specially selected hops and a much slower, more traditional brewing process than the bigger Belgian brands to restore original Pils bitterness to its taste. “This has been a very personal project of mine and one that I feel tremendously passionate about,said Joris. For many years, I wanted to create a beer that reflected the reasons why Belgium became world-famous for beer, using a traditional approach and techniques. It was a happy accident that I’ve been able to do so in a place I’ve known all my life. In Medieval Europe, these monks really forged the way with beer but then their knowledge and craft was almost wiped out as brewing became commercial. The more I read, the more I discovered how talented, how important the monks were, particularly from this Abbey. I knew I’d found something special.” As well as being the home of the beer the Abbey has been big news in Belgium over recent months, having secured a 45 million euro investment to refurbishment the site and bring it back to its former glory. Heverlee’ new website www.heverlee.com activity can be followed on Twitter: @heverleebeer, #heverlee After this, Joris talked us through a selection of beers which he enjoys. An array of Belgian beers were sampled leaving us very merry. However more was in store! Some pouring of Heverlee beer. Thankfully we were sober enough to pass the test! TLDR – A crisp lager from Belgium, which is rather nice, try it!
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