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Brouwerij Straffe Hendrik / Huisbrouwerij De Halve Maan
Active Beers: 9
Beer Ratings: 770
Beer Avg: 3.8
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
phone: +32 (0)50 33 26 97
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Reviews by DaPeculierDane:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 1 | selection: 3 | food: 4 | $$
Finding De Halve Maan was a great part of the fun. For this, I set my bearings, put away my map, and followed the smell of malt. Through red brick alleyways upon stone cobbled pavement we traversed as all the while that wonderful aroma grew more pungent. At long last we came upon a rather funny scene.
Before us stood a wide courtyard behind which rose an attractive brick brewery more akin to a late 19th century American or British brewery than to those I have typically witnessed in Belgium. Its entry way and windows, however, were ornately dressed to the point of approaching Disney Land. I began to worry that we had stumbled into a tourist trap.
In the far corner of the courtyard, near the entryway, a narrow bar topped with the familiar Bruges Zot tap handles rested upon the cobbles. On the left and the right were well set tables covered in neat white table clothes. The sun shown over our heads for the first time since our arrival in Belgium, a country whose climate bests Seattle's as the world's most miserable.
Then something odd started happening, the waiters and waitresses started scurrying about, rapidly moving tables to create a lane down the center of the courtyard. Out of nowhere a small blue tractor hauling a cart drove right down the aisle, nearly hitting several dining guests and stopped below a large window. The window swung open. A shoot slid down. Heaps of hot, moist spent malt began pouring into the cart on their way to a local dairy farmer no doubt. The smell was enticing to say the least and it was time for a beer. More importantly, however, we confirmed that we had not tripped into a tourist trap at all. This was real live working brewery, and if that meant that the customer's lunch had to be disturbed for few moments to continue the work of the brewery, so be it.
We drank the Bruges Zot, the Bok, and the Dubel. I recall drinking a wit as well but I did not takes notes on it so perhaps I'm wrong. Our lunch was quite good. I enjoyed a healthy heaping of Vlaamse Stovery with fries and salad. It wasn't the best I had in Belgium but it was adequate. My companions ate a bouillabaisse of sorts and a wonderful salad. The food was above average and a value by Bruges standards. The beers were as they always are from this brewery - clean, pleasing, appropriate to their styles, but not exceptional.
The one problem we encountered was service. The servers were stressed and rude and that was only on the rare occasion that they were present. We waited and waited to order our beers, waited for twenty minutes or more to get them, waited again to order, waited for what seemed like forever to get our lunch and to order another round, etc... They were busy and it would have been forgivable had the staff been apologetic but instead they pointed their noses in the air and acted as if the long delays were somehow of our own making.
Overall: What would have been an above average meal at a great price and some decent beers in a absolutely top notch setting was turned sour by absolutely dismal service. Don't go unless you have a lot of time on your hands or are able to go when it is slow.
07-26-2010 16:41:56 |
More by DaPeculierDane
More User Reviews:
United Kingdom (England)
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | $$
I have been to the De Halve Maan brewery several times and would highly recommend it to anyone visiting Bruges.
Although the tour is very basic in terms of the brewing process, the tour guides are absolutely phenomenal. You get to walk around several areas of the brewery, ending with a free taster.
Be careful, the stairways on this tour can be treacherous for younger/older patrons. I would not recommend the tour for those with young children.
05-18-2013 17:08:27 |
More by geedub11
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.25 | $$
As part of a beer tour group we visited Staffe Hendrik and loved it. One of the best facility tours by far. Top notch marketing across all products.
The food was great and gave us a good idea of Belgian cruisine. We spent almost 3 hours having lunch and it was well worth it.
The gift shop was nice but unfortunately were sold out on a number of things.
If you are in Bruges, you must stop here.
05-15-2013 01:33:25 |
More by hotsudge
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | $$
We didn't spend a lot of time in Bruges, but did everything that we wanted after seeing the movie In Bruges, including climbing the tower and taking a canal tour. Easily could have spent another day there to take advantage of the museums more, but still a fun, touristy visit.
As they were rolling up the streets (we accidentally hit a holiday, but I didn't understand what), we headed to attempt an unplanned brewery tour at De Halve Maan. Unfortunately, when we arrived, the tours were long done and we had less than an hour to sample their beers. Not too disappointed missing the tour since my guess is that the on-the-hour tours would tell us beer is made of four ingredients.
Bruges Zot Blonde and Dubbel beers were very good, but the Straffe Hendrick beers, Tripel and Quad, were a clear notch above. Very Dutch/Flemish style of beers that have a strong balance with an assertive yeast influence, especially the Quad which tasted like Hertog Jan that we brought back from Amsterdam on our first trip there in 2003. Talking to the bartender and complimenting the beer while running out of time before bar close at 6 pm, I asked if I could buy more than one beer. With a slightly astonished look, he said yes. I explained that in the US that a beer in hand had to be more than half finished before buying another. Again, astonished look. I bought our Straffe Hendrick beers to close the bar, turning in our empty glasses to the waitress as we were the last ones to stroll out of the patio.
A relaxing stop at the end of a touristy day. The historic nature of the brewery alone might be worth another stop in the future, especially since the beer is a good enough to warrant it.
Pictures at http://pintsizedrevelations.blogspot.com/2013/02/de-halve-maan-bruges-belgium.html.
02-26-2013 15:20:41 |
More by FightingEntropy
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
This review is for both the tour and tasting room. The way I see it is that if you are reading any reviews on this site and you are in Brugge? you'll visit this location. The tour is fun despite being geared towards non-beer geeks. Cool to see this old brewery in action. In the US they would never let you climb around these stairs and working boilers. I stood 2 feet from them emptying a boiler. Nice view of the city from the roof of the brewery. Tasting room is nice yet a bit more modern in decor. The price of the tour gets you a glass of Zot. It's good; Not sure why this is on the list of top 125 places to have a beer, but if in Brugge.. of course go here
04-19-2012 05:42:15 |
More by Reagan1984
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 2.5 | selection: 2.5 | food: 4 | $$
My wife and i were there in september 2010.It is a nice place where you can eat and drink their beers.We first have waited for a while before the brewery tour starting took place.Sadly ,we could not hear the explanations in our idiom(spanish),the guider was a woman that talked too fast(she might be tired of saying always the same things to the different touristic tours).She showed us the old brewery,there were enormous beer tanks over the roof ,we could go upstairs and had a view of the city.The information i could understand was general,nothing very interesting to me.
After the tour,we have drunk some Brugse Zot beers,we just drank the blonde one, it has an average taste, a bit cloudy but enjoyable.Not a place to visit twice.
01-30-2012 02:43:34 |
More by Tebuken
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | $
Visited the brewery on December 19, 2011. The brewery is located in a pleasant square near the center of Bruges. Took a group tour, tours are every hour in English, French, or Dutch (possibly in other languages too but I'm not sure). The tour covers the brewery's brewing process, some basics about the ingredients of beer and a lot of the history of the brewery, which has been family-owned for generations, as well as a visit to the brewery's roof, which has a nice view over the town. At the end of the tour you get a glass of their Brugse Zot beer, which was pretty tasty. My only criticism would be that the service in the restaurant was pretty slow, it was raining and cold and we stopped in to have a coffee before the tour started but couldn't get a waiter's attention for somewhere between 15 and 20 minutes. Otherwise it's a fun experience, our tour guide was very friendly and warm and the tour and beer were a great experience.
12-21-2011 00:17:49 |
More by WillCarrera
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Stopped by here for lunch on 28SEP11 after some morning site-seeing. Had walked by the place earlier in the day and didn't even notice it. Swung back later and - Bingo!
On the small square where it's located, it is part of an unimposing, multistory brick building. I likely missed it since it is found through an arched tunnel, located in the rear of this building. Through the tunnel will be found a lovely, quiet courtyard. There were probably about 25 small tables there, most of which sat 4 people. The brewery itself, and the main restaurant, were found further to the rear-left, up a short flight of stairs. The remaining surroundings are whitewashed brick walls covered in ivy and other flora. Inside the main building is a large series of rooms for dining and drinking. It's a cavernous place, with the ceiling 2 stories up, very well-lit, and decorated with hops, old beer bottles, lots of copper, and bier posters and pics. There were a couple dozen tables in this main room, plus a smaller room to the rear which, with it's fancy white table-cloths, looked to be reserved for special functions. A large, semi-circular bar sat at the immediate left as you entered the tavern. I opted to park at a small courtyard table for some grub and grog. They had a small mini-bar outside pouring their blonde and dubble from a tap, plus bottles of a tripel and quad were available. I had a dubbel, then a quad, and they were both very satisfying. Service outside was a bit touch and go, as there were only 3 or so out there serving the 25+ tables. I lunched on a ham, cheese and bier soup, which was delicious! This was a very relaxing, enjoyable lunch, indeed. Definitely worth another visit someday. Zum Wohl!!
4.05 rDev +11.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
11-01-2011 13:15:20 |
More by Bierman9
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
A brewery right in the middle of Brugge and you would miss it if you were not looking for it. A really nice courtyard leading up to what looking like an old loading dock. Once up the stair the brewery is on the right and to the left a restaurant. You can tell it was converted to be a restaurant. Nice big windows with tons of natural light and a wall of old bottles on the wall, where I spotted and Hop Devil bottle and a Rolling Rock. I did not eat here, more just for the atmosphere and drinking a couple beers. The service was a bit slow, but it was during lunch and the servers were a bit busy. Neat and pretty cool nonetheless.
09-29-2011 22:33:53 |
More by OWSLEY069
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Found notes I kept from a trip in November 2007. A good walk from the train station (I was actually staying in Brussels, and made a day trip to Bruges while I was there). Nice walk down cobblestone streets. I remember the streets being very narrow and peoples front door opening onto those narrow streets.
They run several brewery tours during the day. Most are in english. The brewery has an amazing history that goes back, I think to Maes. One of the highlights was going to the top of the brewing building and getting an amazing view of the city.
After the tour, you get two samplings of beer. At the time, they had the Bruges Zot and the Bruin. Both were very good.
I did not eat while I was there, but the dining room was packed and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves.
The tour and beer samplings were not expensive and you could get additional servings for about 5 euros.
Worth the trip.
05-29-2011 03:22:09 |
More by JamnesCameron
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Brouwerij Straffe Hendrik / Huisbrouwerij De Halve Maan in Brugge, Belgium