Lost Beers

The history of beer from Belgium, The Netherlands (Holland), France, and elsewhere. Looking for beer types of the past, now long gone. How did they taste? Why have they vanished? And busting some myths along the way…

Recent comments

Stella Artois: so is it a Christmas beer or not?

14 December 2018 by - No comments

The makers of Stella Artois will often tell you that it originally was a Christmas beer, when it was introduced in 1926. But was it?


Big data: Jacques Trifin’s beer labels

A wonderful resource for historical Belgian beer is label collector Jacques Trifin’s website. Not only does he own about 28,000 beer labels, the website is also very useful to make some very interesting quantitative analyses…

A pub crawl through 16th century Antwerp

Antwerp pub life is eternal, if the ‘Mandement van Bacchus’ is anything to go by, a satirical text from 1580 that gives us an insight into the drinking habits of those days…

Fact check: Yvan De Baets on saison (and the results may shock you)

Every saison lover knows Phil Markowski’s 2004 book ‘Farmhouse ales’, and Yvan De Baets’ contribution on its history. But has anyone actually checked their sources? I have.

A recipe for Antwerp seef

And now a legendary beer from Antwerp: seef. But the city beer of Antwerp, that would have to be De Koninck? It may be now, but before that, things were different. So what was seef (pronounced: ‘safe’) exactly? Including a historic recipe…

What is Belgium’s oldest beer?

When making a beer trip to Belgium, you can easily get mesmerized by all the history you see. So that’s why this time I’ll try to answer the inevitable question: what is Belgium’s oldest beer?

The real Belgian ‘farmhouse ales’

After exploring the presence of saison beer in Belgian cities in the previous article, now: the countryside. What do we know about the historical rural beers of Wallonia?

What was a 19th century saison really like?

One important Belgian historic beer type is especially problematic: saison. This may shock saison lovers, but there is no historical text describing saison as a ‘farmhouse ale’…