Belgium > Gent
Alengrin (71) , Belgium | September 28, 2014| Updated June 5, 2015
68 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 9/10 SELECTION 6/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 8/10 OVERALL 15/20
There isn’t a whole lot I can add to what has already been written about this place. This isn’t a pub, this is the house of a hoarder who just happens to sell beer. He’s a friendly guy though and became a personal friend throughout the years. I do not approve of the ridiculous price of 4 euros for a shamelessly dirty and re-used plastic cup with ’any’ beer he just happens to have on tap, but with some negotiation it is possible to ask for something else, as he still has several crates of other beers lurking somewhere (from a bygone time when he actually had a selection worth mentioning); expect dirty glasses, old beer and way too high prices, though. This utterly bizarre place doesn’t attract many locals anymore nowadays: if any, the customers are usually tourists from all parts of the world, though the odd - and sometimes drunk, or deranged, or both - local may still pop in from time to time. Interestingly (and unbeknownst to most), it has attracted several American brewers throughout the years (Russian River for example, leaving a bottle of Pliny the Elder here as a gift to the owner...). Officials have tried to close this place down several times, but to no avail... This old glory, being one of the first pubs ever to open in the Patershol quarter, seems to be effectively ’un-closable’... Go there for the experience but only if you are capable of a (very) strong dosis of irony.
kraddel (205) some beerplace , Belgium | November 25, 2013
40 AMBIANCE 2/5 SERVICE 2/10 SELECTION 1/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 1/10 OVERALL 15/20
we came in, the guy was sitting in the dark .
the interior was PACKED with mess .
costumes & secondhand clothings
the guy asked us if we wanted ’ a beer’ . wich we replied with yes . he gave us each a plastic cub with ’ A ’ beer in it . we than split one of our own bottles, for wich he took himself a glass. we had to ask for some glass for us, we got 1 plastic cup ...
so yeah ..
all this is nice and .. diffrent ... untill we asked the bill .. 9 € for 2 plastic cups filled with beer we didnt ask for ? damn ...
77ships (132) Antwerpen, Belgium | November 24, 2013
68 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 6/10 SELECTION 5/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 3/10 OVERALL 18/20
This is a place that needs to be visited in order to be fully believed. I had heard & read the weird stories about this place I needed to know. It was easy enough to locate. It appeared to be located in a garage with wooden picnic benches to sit. There was only two tables available. The place looked like the house of a hoarder which is possibly what this is. There was so much stuff inside that it was hard to even tell what was what. The ceiling is covered with hanging bicycles, statues, stuff everywhere,… I couldn’t make out what was what. The place was only dimly lit with some lanterns, it is questionable that this place has electricity or running water or electing heating or… Upon entering the establishment we were asked if we wanted a beer. Just beer with no specification as to what. We agreed & got indeed two beers in plastic cups. Interestingly we both got different beers & were told what they were, both were Huyghe products & I assume that these are the only beers he has. I assume that they were draft offerings but who can really tell what goes on here. Everyone else who entered also were offered just “beer”. We offered to share an To Øl Southern Frontier with the owner. He joined us & we struck up a brief conversation. He got himself a glass but we had to specifically ask for a plastic cup… We were quickly joined by an acquaintance of the owner at our table. We overheard the owner talking about severe financial difficulties, a quick google search revealed stories about him getting arrested, sued, the place closed several times etc. I suspect that for a long time & possibly still this place either was or is an unlicensed bar. I question the availability of food here or it being a good idea to eat here. The cost is ridiculous, 4.5 € for a beer which is just crazy. A bad way of him dealing with his financial difficulties I assume. I will take the ridiculous cost as a museum admittance fee which is more or less what this place was. An interesting experience other than the ridiculously high price I liked it & might even repeat the experience. It is indeed a notably bizarre bar experience but not in a harmful way. I find it very hard to rate this place because it appears to be located in a real very far away from numerical scores.
JefVerstraete (107) Ghent, Belgium | October 24, 2013
20 AMBIANCE 2/5 SERVICE 2/10 SELECTION 1/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 3/10 OVERALL 5/20
Strangest bar experience ever. Garbage and dust all over the place, Just 2 seats available. Unfriendly extravagant owner with beard, pink legging and golden necklaces. He had only one beer available, served in plastic cup. It was his own beer he told me, didn’t know what it was. The price was 4 euro for a warm bad beer.
tquest (14) , Belgium | September 7, 2012
60 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 6/10 SELECTION 4/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 5/10 OVERALL 16/20
Oh well, what to say about this crazy bar.... . When it’s open (and that is not very often) you really need to visit it.
Inside it’s sO messy ... the cat is laying on the table and when it wakes up it mostly tries to catch a mouse because there are plenty ... . The owner is even more crazy but okay this bar has so many stories. btw, if you are over 1.80m it’s pretty hard to get in ... .
AdamChandler (260) Enfield, New Hampshire | June 4, 2012
40 AMBIANCE 1/5 SERVICE 7/10 SELECTION 1/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 9/10 OVERALL 11/20
The weird bicycle bar. There was no place to sit. Just one seat available. One beer on tap. Owner is slightly crazy but very funny and pleasurable to speak with. Charged me nothing for the beer but I gave him 5 Euro anyway. It was just me in there on a Friday night at 10PM. It’s a very dirty place but technically a bar. Make sure you sign his guest book while you’re there.
BlackHaddock (429) , England | March 30, 2012
66 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 7/10 SELECTION 2/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 3/10 OVERALL 20/20
Please note this review is from 2009.Bizarre, perplexing and weird are the best three words I can spell, that sum up this place.
I forced my reluctant wife to enter what can only be discribed as a dirty, full garage or shed. We were met by a bearded chap (Pater Lieven) with three Christmas jumpers on, he moved some rags, wood and an empty crate to reveal a bench seat and a small but long, thin table. Above our heads were a multitude of old bikes, lamps, bird cages (with plastic fish in them) and religious artifacts, there is other stuff too, but you only have 5000 characters in a Beerfly review. The only light came from candles and a roaring wood fire at the far end of the garage/shed.
Through the gloom we now saw other people, some young French speakers and a group of middle aged Flemish men. I asked if he had any Amber beers, he said he only had dark and wandered off to return with two bottles of Rochefort Trappist Ale 10 and no glasses. My wife decided we didn’t want to ask for glasses because of cleaning issues, so we risked Viles Disease instead.
Half way through our beer the Flemish chaps left and Pater choose that moment to replenish the fire. He rummaged around and came up with an electric circular saw and proceeded to cut up a wooden pallet covering my wife with wood shavings. There was plenty of wood stacked around the room, but just for show (I assume) he wanted to fill the room with noise and wood dust.
Have a look by all means, but don’t expect a cheap beer and just enjoy the strange ways of a deranged, disturbed, unbalanced owner.
jfb (137) Freising, Germany | March 28, 2012| Updated April 21, 2014
54 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 5/10 SELECTION 7/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 3/10 OVERALL 10/20
Can’t really add much to what the others have already said about this place - it has to be seen to be believed. Trying to sign the online guestbook in a coherent fashion while drunk is quite a challenge. The bottled beer is rather expensive, but that shouldn’t prevent a quick visit to marvel at the fine and tastefully arranged décor.
Boudicca (949) London, England | August 28, 2011
64 AMBIANCE 4/5 SERVICE 8/10 SELECTION 2/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 5/10 OVERALL 18/20
Velootje had changed since my previous visit a few years ago. It now has beer on tap (Delirium Tremens) and the visitors’ book, which it’s compulsory to sign, is now online. It also looked as if Lieven, the owner, had tidied up a bit as well because there was room to sit by the fireplace. Apart from that, it was just as I remembered it – like a very untidy, overstuffed junk shop - and fully lived up to expectations!
Jackie, who can type properly (i.e. with more than two fingers), bravely took on the task of writing in the visitors’ book on behalf of four of us and we’d almost finished our beers by the time she was done. It took ages, partly because the owner and his enormous black cat were “supervising” and partly because apparently - and this shouldn’t have come as a surprise in this surreal place - the keyboard had been “adapted” so that the labels on the keys didn’t correspond to the letters appearing on the screen.
Enough said - but visit while you can. Velootje is still lit by candles and oil lamps, still has piles of clothes festering in a corner and still has an ashtray full of fag butts under the no-smoking sign. Rumour has it that the health and safety police are on the case …..
(Last visited 11 June 2011).
Benjii (63) Edinburgh, Scotland | June 19, 2011
72 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 6/10 SELECTION 7/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 7/10 OVERALL 18/20
I love this place! Found this pub by following the Lonely Planet instructions to look out for a rustic metal flag. Once you squeeze your way in you will be confronted by a mass of train sets, religious paraphernalia, antique bicycles and more! Things are hanging from the ceiling and cover most seating areas : ) We got a spot on the end of a cluttered picnic bench and were offered, "a good strong beer"- St Barnadus 12 from a crate on the floor. Absolutely a must see pub.
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