Grand café and micro-brewery "La Vieille Forge in Mont"


A stepstone away from birthplace of a famous beer symbolized by dwarfs, there is another little paradise for beer lovers: the Vieille Forge in Mont. This Gîte is run by a Dutch-speaking couple and it shelters "the second greatest brewery of the Achouffe valley" in its outbuildings, the "Inter-Pol" micro-brewery, and tavern well-known by the real good beer lovers, the "Grand Café"

Gîtes and unique personsWhy is this mini paradise for beer lovers unique? Because Tine and Pol have transformed the outstanding building in a gîte with five rooms that can accomodate about ten persons, with a gigantic table where delicious meals, that are often beer-based, are eaten, a wood stove where logs are burnt. And this, because Pol has hed the brillant idea to divide the old forge next to them in two parts, for breweing his beers, the Witte Pol and Zwarte Pol in the first part, and for setting up a tavern in the second part, he called "Au Grand Café", with humour! The setting is not outdone, neither in the warm café nor in its surroundings that are polished up and mantained with talent by Tine's and Pol's green fingers.Blacksmith, anvil and mashing rakeIt is after eighteen years spent restoring clients and giving them something to drink in their restaurant-café in Dadizele, next to Menin that Tine and Pol decided to come in the Ardennes. The blacksmith's house is three hundred years old and it was for sale. The deal got quickly concluded. Some months of transformations and of work later, Tine and Pol opened a "bed & breakfast" called "La Vieille Forge" and with an anvil as emblem. They did not hand mashing rake yet. Guide and brewer However, Pol nearly fell in the beer when he was a baby. He spent about twenty years behind abar and it must be taken into account. And it is even more important when the drinks menu has over 140 varieties of beer. So, when the brewery in Achouffe looked for a guide who speaks Dutch as well as he knows the beer secret, Pol was the Man. Being a connoisser, he was asked a lot of questions, often good, often very precise about breweing. And there, he spoke about beer. At first, he started by clearing up the brewing's mysteries in the saucepans of Madam's kitchen as the two founders of the end of the valley also did. As he got seized with this frothing and overflowing passion, he dedicated the second half of the old forge to a room where he produces about 70 liters! He submitted his production to the appreciation of the brewers from Achouffe, and from the other places, he listened carefully to the comments of the tasters and of the consumers. Afterwhat time came for him to officialize his activity and to sign a agreement with the excise duty office who had, in a first time, to implement to the mico-brewery the same rules they implement to the greatest brewers in the world!Witte and Zwarte PolFar be it from Pol to grow and to follow the same way his neighbour brewers took. His modest products is enough for making his bead-and-breakfast and his "Grand Café" running, who can be proud to propose two exclusive home-made beers. The Witte Pol is for white beer lovers, and Pierre Celis, a world reference among the connoisers declared it is "the best white beer he ever tatsed these last few years". The Zwarte Pol is inspired from the "Chocolate Indulgence" from the Ommegang brewery in Cooperstown (East from New York) and it reminds the stout with its creamy aspect and its sweet taste as it is made with lactose and cocoa powder. The ideal place for tasting them is the "Au Grand Café", of course. And in case there would'nt be none of the two home-made products any more, there are still the other beers, Achouffe, Liefmans, Duvel-Moortgat, or even the smisje which is produced by Johan Brandt, a brewer friend located in the Flemish Ardennes, near Oudenaarde. It is obvious that good beers have no linguistical borders

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