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Taps: 15 / Bottles: 2400
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
Impasse de la Fidélité 4
phone: +32 2 514 44 34
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
| Reviews: 128 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 2.5 | selection: 5
I didn't even want to go down this alley, my girfriend wanted to see the Janneken pis. I'm glad we did, because I would have passed by probably the best bar selection-wise I've ever been to. The place boasts a selection of 2004 Beers, and even has a letter from a lawyer or whatever in the menu to prove it. I didn't see any proof of the contrary, everything I ordered I received. A nice change of pace from other bars that seem to pad their Beer list with brews that are "unfortunately unavaible at this time". If I could give this place a 6 for selection I would.
The atmosphere was allright, but sort of sub-par compared to the many historic bars and estaminets the city has to offer. We were there on a monday afternoon, so maybe the place wasn't exactly jumpin' either. That's why service was so poor, only one bartender and I had to go to the bar to get the menu and back again to get served. Nevertheless, the elephants hanging from the ceiling, the Mannekin pis fountain, the display case with the glasses and all that storage space for the Beer still makes Delirium café a great spot to hang out. "A good party place, perfect to get nice and hammered" as my girfriend put so succinctly.
10-05-2004 01:43:13 |
More by Goldorak
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$$
I finally made it to the actual Delirium Cafe after four attempts. And now I'm a bit disappointed compared to the hype. The beer is served well and I'm enjoying the destination, but it's Saturday night, the music is loud, and the youngsters are starting to tie one on. I sit quietly with ear plugs in to survive. Lots of energy in the place, but not the beer geek mecca of legend. The upstairs Hoppy Loft lives up to that reputation better than the Cafe.
To start, I get a draft of Buffalo Belgian Stout by Br. van den Bosche. As advertised in the giant book of beer, it's a smooth Belgian interpretation of a stout: dark with a light brown head in a soft, elegant glass, chocolate nose with near black malt, but the Belgian yeast spice clearly influences the final beer to create something that's stout-ish though something else. Nice beer and a great example of how culture and beer can cross to create new tastes.
Sitting at the bar, the range of bottles going out is incredible. All served well, poured and presented with the empty bottle, seemingly whole or decanted by style. Standard in Belgium, but such knowledge and service is an amazing sight to see and transplanting it to the US would push us to a whole new level of beer consumption. If only.
Next, I ordered a St. Idesbald Tripel; it's the first beer I've had that's not in it's own glass--just a plain chalice. Guessing it's a small brewery. A light bodied tripel with a serious funk in it--it's adequate. Looked in the book later and it's Brouwerij Huyghe of Delirium Tremens fame (pronounced her-ga according to Elke and Sven, locals I met earlier on the trip).
For a snack I ordered a Cheese Portion Gouda Jeune. A lot of words for a bowl of gouda cheese chunks that seems to be meant for a group, but I'm happily eating some excellent Dutch kaas that's not changed by American rules. Odd thing, to me anyway, is that it came with a shaker of celery salt, which is surprisingly good sprinkled lightly.
Decided to get off the taps and landed on a bottle of Kasteel Donker; it's an 11%, nearly opaque ale with a light brown head. Heady nose of alcohol, fig and chocolate. The alcohol overpowers the smooth maltiness and dark fruit of the beer. Adequate but not up to other Kasteel brews I've had in the past.
I looked through the entire list and it feels a bit like channel surfing. 200 choices and nothing to drink. Not nothing, but not as much of a selection as imagined. Delirium Cafe is a very fun stop for a vacation, but if I lived nearby and could delve into the list, I would enjoy it more. Too my surprise, this visit is increasing my motivation to drink my home state more--appreciate great local beer rather than longing for beer far a field.
I might return to the Hoppy Loft later, but my guess is that this is the end of Delirium Village for me. Off to find Mannekin Pis to finish of my day.
10-11-2012 01:44:16 |
More by FightingEntropy
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$$
Visited the Delirium from about 9:30pm-11pm on 10 September 2006.
Our group had just finished a leisurely dinner at Le Rose Blanche, overlooking Brussels' Grand Place. Following our intrepid leader, a sizable portion of the group meandered our way through brightly lit, bustling and narrow streets to the relative solitude of Impasse De La Fidélité. We descended the staircase into a sprawling and dark beer den. A level below the street, Delirium's walls are covered in beer signage and memorabilia, cases are filled with bottles and glassware. The dark ceiling is covered with an array of colorful serving trays and hundreds of tiny twinkling lights. To the left of the stairs is a sizable bar with several tenders working feverishly to fill all the orders. Considerably warm and stuffy downstairs, we could have chosen to sit at street level. But miss out on this atmosphere? No way...
It was a Sunday night and there was plenty of seating at the far end of the room, opposite the bar. The noise level was slightly lower here and the air circulation improved minimally. As our group size was approximately 20, we placed orders with our host rather than with one of the overtaxed (and some said rude) bartenders. We had to scratch and claw for a copy of the enormous catalog of beers, though eventually one came our way. By then we'd already placed orders based on our host's recommendations. A delicious and perfectly served La Rulles Tripel for me, a wonderful and powerful bottle of 2005 Pannepot for my wife. Many tastes were shared amongst those at our table, notably a superb Goudenband from our new friend melbatoast93.
With a list of 2004 beers (or so they say) available (20 or so taps, the rest in bottles), one could conceivably drink for years here without encountering the same beer. Just an ungodly selection...the sheer quantity is astounding. But that's not to say that EVERY beer was amazing on the list...for instance, Delirium claims to have at least one representative from every beer producing country in the world. That's great for Belgium, Germany, UK etc., but some countries just don't hold up well. Included in that was the US selections, with a disappointing list of some 20-odd beers about half of which were extremely overpriced macro-crap. Oh well, we weren't visiting Belgium to drink US beers were we?
In general, great environment, tons of quality beer selection, mediocre service, didn't try the food. When in Brussels be sure to pay Delirium a visit!
09-27-2006 01:14:27 |
More by msubulldog25
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$$
Wow! Tough place to find, but well worth the effort. Halfway down an alley off a street full of pushy restaurateurs, you'd never find it if you didn't know where to look. Just inside the door and to the right is a small seating area with wooden tables, chairs and benches. To the left are stairs leading down. Take this stairway to (beer) heaven. White brick floor, off-white plaster walls, ceiling covered with liter mugs, serving platters and other beer paraphrenalia. The wood and brick bar sits on the left, wrapped around a corner. The place was 3/4 full on a Monday at 7:30 p.m., and packed when I went back at about 11:00. Sixties pop music was on the sound system. There is service only at the bar, and neither bartender appears to be in any particular hurry. Once you get their attention, they are fairly responsive to questions and quick to produce what is requested. But don't even try to get a copy of the bottle list. The food menu was, ahem, very sparse. Who cares?
14 taps, all top notch Belgian brews, including two rotating specials. The bartender's T-shirt claimed a selection of 2004 bottled beers. I believe it because a) they said the beer list was actually a book, b) there were bottles everywhere behind the bar and in a little annex across the room, c) I saw the bartender pour a Baltika 3 while I was there. (Why on Earth anyone would want a Baltika 3 there is another topic - don't get me started.) and d) they had the elusive Ranke XX Bitter that I hadn't been able to find anywhere else in Brussels. Any beer lover should put this place on their "must visit" list.
12-08-2006 21:48:53 |
More by Globetrotter
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I was at the DC in June and it was a great place to go. Me and some buddies were on a beer trip extravaganza and wanted to try as many beers as possible. We found a very helpful bar man who we told to just keep bringing us different beers with 4 glasses and for two nights we slammed about 30 different beers.
The selection is huge with around 2000 beers and barman are very knowledable.
The biggest downside is the atmosphere which was almost like being a 30 year old at a high school. 16 year old drunk belgians are not a cool crown to hang with.
If you just care about the beer selection you should go here.
My first review was filled with enthusiam of a new craft beer drinker not going to many bars. After going to this place again, my review is much lower. Yes they do have 2000 beers, but nothing especially rare. It is really smokey, way too busy, and loud. Its not a place for craft beer drinkers, more of a stop for the young crowd and a huge tourist trap. I can't tell you how many 20 person Asian tour groups walked through in a hour.
They do have a new area, the hoppy room that has American beers. I was quite impressed with their selection of beers, great for non-Americans.
11-27-2010 20:03:25 |
More by jrallen34
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
We had to go, we were in Brussels...
I won't go into details about this place as everyone else has probably done that...
*Huge, vast amazing selection of Belgian beer. Take a peak into the cooler and definitely check out the tome of a beer list.
*Convenient as its in the more touristy section of the city..as compated to Cantillon which is not.
*Once you've gone you can say you've been
*Service can be a bit slow or non existant and some of bartenders don't know all that much or care all that much about beer. Irony?
*Its packed with backpackers and random tourists that can be loud and obnoxious
*This is not a cozy little Belgian pub with tons of Belgian beers, it lacks a certain atmosphere that would make you want to stay longer than an hour.
03-21-2009 22:51:41 |
More by indiapaleale
vibe: 2 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2 | selection: 5 | $$$
Out of all the bars I'd read about in Brussels, this is the one I wanted to visit most. This is also the one that had the biggest difference between my expectation and the reality it left on me; in other words it was the biggest disappointment.
This place is across the alley from the Janneken Pis (a little girl peeing statue; sort of a parody of the Mannekin Pis) just off the main tourist drag in Brussels. The signage out front indicates 2004 beers. Inside, the upstairs had draft beer, and the downstairs had bottled beer. It reminded me of the dive bar that everyone hung out at in college...you know the one with $1 pitcher night and smelled like pee? There were lots of brewery tackers on the wall, but the place had a very collegiate feel which was not very sophisticated. I've remarked that other establishments lack "beer culture" and that is the case here also.
The beer list is extensive, but hard to navigate. It is a binder and each beer has its own page, which makes it very difficult to get a feel for what's there in total.
The bartendress didn't speak any English (which is OK, this is a foreign country with 3 official languages of its own after all) but even with the language barrier it was pretty clear to me she didn't know an awful lot about beer. I got the wrong beer, but I didn't mind too much.
Visit, but save your repeat business for other places.
10-24-2008 15:17:55 |
More by BeerBelcher
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$
If your motto has anything to do with working hard for what's important, then this is your kinda bar. A bit of a scavenger hunt through the tight and competitive market alleys of Brussels, the procession through the cafes and stores turned into more of a tug-of-war as everyone who works a store pulls you into their establishment kicking and screaming. But a narrow find is marked by pink elephants, faded blue signs, and fountains of children peeing on stuff (what' that all about Belgium?)
The first attempt to quench the thirst lead down a semi-circular staircase that's lined with tiles of actual Delirium Tremens bottles that are mortared into the wall of the stair- cool stuff indeed. The broad bar anchors the back of the spacious room with low-lying ceilings. This is a much larger beer bar than is normal for Belgium but it turns out still inadequate as well over a hundred patrons filled the space even on Friday afternoon. But the smoky and crowded space denied a seat at the bar or any of the tables, so it's upstairs we go.
Here, the large bar stretches all along the right-hand side of the room with a large copper brew kettle that sculpturally decorates the middle of the room. Picnic tables and an industrial looking beer delivery seems to be a fusion of biergardens and advanced homebrewing. A vast difference from the beer propaganda and trinket riddled decor of downstairs.
Here, we are greeted with a beer menu that's basically as thick as the King James Bible that boasts over two thousand beer options. Of all the places in Belgium that could use quicker service, this is not one. On page three the attentive waitress is eager awaiting my order- "Delirium Tremens please."
No food for us, only a few glasses of beer then on our merry way. Three beers and five euros later, we feel like we took advantage of their hospitality and quality beers as the price is extremely reasonable (maybe unreasonably low). But the stop at this famous bier house is well worth the effort. Happy we came, but the bars size and semi-maddening crowd makes the bar much less personable, charming, and traditional than many smaller cafes around Belgium.
05-21-2012 17:51:01 |
More by BEERchitect
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
I don't know how or why, but I really had no problem finding htis place unlike everyone else. Ask me how to get other places and I'll admit to being confused. :)
Noisy as all hell and dark and dank on a cold late winter evening. Smoke everywhere, but this place is fun. Giant selection and people from all across the planet. I ended up sitting in here one night drinking with a bunch of Swedish homebrewers. That don't happen every day now do it?
The beer book has already been talked to death and the bartenders do have that world weary fuck it attitude that seems to inhabit a lot of young folk here and there. But establish a good report with them and you're good to go.
Honestly, not a bad place to go given it's central proximity and the ability to try just about every beer in Belgium in one place.
01-01-2007 09:45:35 |
More by drewbage
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$
A- The place is a madhouse at night. Jam-packed with people young and old. We managed to get a couple of bar stools upstairs, which suited us fine. I didn't get the impression that everyone there was an all-out beer geek, but the atmosphere was good nonetheless... like stepping into another world.
Q- I would normally give this place a 5.0 for quality because their beer menu was rich with artisanal beer selections, all of which tasted fresh and was served in proper glassware. However, the bar was very smoky, which impeded my ability to appreciate the beer I was drinking.
Service- From the bar, it was quite easy to get service. Despite the fact that it was busy, our bartender was happy to have some idle conversation with us... He made us feel right at home.
Selection- The tap list upstairs is nice... but you go downstairs and see their bottle list... Holy Shit! I have never seen such an extensive bottle list! Super-impressive.
Value- Everything seemed reasonably prices for Brussels.
NOTE: Delerium recently held the Guinness World Record for most types of beer in stock. They currently hold the record for most beer trays, which can be seen all over the walls and ceiling of the downstairs portion of the bar. Across the street that have an ASTONISHING selection of rums, whiskeys and absinthes from around the world, each holding a world record. SUPER IMPRESSIVE PLACE!!
03-24-2010 11:35:10 |
More by jgasparine
Delirium Café in Brussels, Belgium
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