Where to begin...? It took me about five trips to Brussels before I finally made it here, but boy, was it worth the wait. The short of it is this place oozes with tradition, has the friendliest staff, and possibly the best beer selection in the world. While there are places that definitely have longer cuvée lists, Grote Dorst has a menu that's just very well put together. And don't even get me started on the value... the prices here are very fair. It's worth pointing out that this isn't a place you go to to "score whalez" or anything like that. This is a place you visit to rub elbows with locals, enjoy amazing lambic and just take in the culture. I believe the Guide Michelin has as its definition for a three star place that it is "worth the trip alone" or something to that effect. This is that place in the world of beer. Right up there with Ebenezer's and a few others for me.
Visited on a Sunday. Expected it to be more busy, but the place was quite cosy and quiet. We had a Lindemans Oude Lambiek from tap (recommended by the barkeep), a Prins van Brabant (also recommended by him, with an explanation about its inception) and, for a good enough price, a Black Albert.
The selection is great, all breweries of the 'Pajottenland' are represented. Mainly Geuze and Lambic, of course, but a bottle from Struise Brouwers makes a good alternative, to say the least.
A very enjoyable experience; I'll definitely visit again.
After several trips to Belgium we finally could hit this place, but in the return way from Holland. We have wished to visit it for long, but due to its opening hours (only 3-4 hours on sundays midday) we couldn´t. Fortunatelly for us, they also open on religious holydays, so August 15th was the day for it. Check their facebook page in advance to make sure, some days they open till later in the evening. Well, i must say this was really enjoyable. As it was a non usual opening day, when we get into the place there were only locals inside, some of them curious about us. I guess old regulars find funny that beergeeks from all over the world are really interested in visiting this place, in the countryside of Belgium, away from any other interesting beer destination.
Classic old place, with a marble bar in the middle, no bar service, so you must find a table and wait for the service to come. Lots of breweriana, lambic mainly. Beer selection is mainly lambic, as expected, with several offers "on tap" (i guess bag in box, cause you don´t see how they pour it) at really good prices (3 euros for every glass), including gueuze and kriek. And then the bottle list. I wonder if Kulminator in Antwerpen has a wider choice, but anyway this place has a extremely good selection, including vintage versions of some ones, and rare editions. No credit cards taken, so if you want to go for big ones bring cash enough. Gueze cheese was the only eating option we saw and had, quite mild and tasty, good to pair with lambic. Apart from this, probably the best about this place is the ambiance. I´ve been in no other place like this where to enjoy a lambic. Really worthy and a must for any beer lover, at least once in a lifetime (I hope to come back again, asap). World class place.
Visited during TdG 2017 weekend. Because of the TdG the menu was different and limited, but full with many very good lambics. Quite ordinary ambiance, the was service not too attentive and could be be better. Pricey, and only cash. Not sure why this place so overrated, especially when it’s open 3 hours a week. Maybe because of rare beers that available here, unfortunately I could not see them on TdG weekend.
My wife was kind enough to agree to a day of visiting more remote beer places. Although I only made it to two before her patience ran out, I made sure to put this first on my list.
We drove, and were able to park down the hill a bit w/o problems. Apparently there is a bus as well. The place does not look like much from the outside; old building with some tables in front and along the side. Inside was very crowded at about noon on Sunday, with a mix of locals and beer dorks. Bottle list was amazing. By far the best selection of Belgian spontaneous fermentation that I have ever seen, including a ton of older vintage bottles. Unfortunately the cell signal is nearly zero here so I was not able to look stuff up to any great extent, which means that I missed out on a couple of true whales, but oh well. Do you research before you go people! This is a cash bar only, and you likely would need to search a bit to find an ATM, so bring a full wallet! Prices are pretty reasonable from my perspective. Service was a bit slow given the crowd. Nobody was in a hurry, and only one guy knew where any of the unusual bottles were stored, so if you wanted anything outside of the norm you had to wait for him to get free. Receipts were written up on paper and hand added, which is cool, if slow.
I actually enjoyed the rustic farm house ambiance of the place; my wife basically hated everything about the visit and walked down the hill to a cafe to wait for me, but she can enter her own rating if she wants :).
The short of it: This is a world class place and is as close to mecca as is possible to achieve if you are a lover of Geuze, Lambic and the like. A+
Nice location that may require a little planning to visit, but unless you hate lambic it’s well worth the effort. Couple of draft lambics, great selection of geuze and fruit lambic in bottles, some trappists as well, very reasonable prices. What makes it truly special is not the selection of lambics but the ambiance.
No food except for some cheese, so prepare yourself with a big breakfast.
Gelegen midden in een klein dorpje niet ver van Brussel. Gezien de beperkte openingstijden moeilijk te bereiken. Het interieur doet denken aan een oud volks café en is gezellig om te zitten. De service is vriendelijk en snel. De kaart bevat een verbazingwekkende hoeveelheid zure bieren tegen een ok prijs.