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In de Vrede

Not Rated.
In de VredeIn de Vrede

75 Reviews
Reviews: 75
Visits: 104
Avg: 4.18
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: 3
Cask: N
[ Bar, Eatery, Store ]

Donkerstraat 13
Westvleteren, 8640
phone: +32 57 40 03 77

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: TheLongBeachBum

Legally, the only retail vendor for the famous Westvleteren Trappist beers. Blonde, 8, and 12 are available, plus a selection of cheese and meats.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 75 | Visits: 104
Reviews by BeerBelcher:
Photo of BeerBelcher
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 3

It is very difficult to separate my perceptions of the In de Vrede café from the great beers I had there and the nice sunny day on the patio during which I enjoyed them. I had a terrific visit here, although the place itself was not what I expected.

The Garmin Nuvi led us down some country roads to the abbey after our visit to Ieper. The café sits directly in front of the abbey, and was far larger, newer, more modern, and more secular than I expected. I thought it would be a small hole-in-the-wall filled with foreign beer-geeks, like myself. Instead, it was a huge dining room/gift shop with lots of outdoor patio seating, attended to by a staff of young servers in logoed polo shirts and jeans.

Clientele was mostly local folks. I visited on a Sunday, and the place was packed with a post-church crowd. Families, older people, and a lot of couples (Europeans make out a lot in public).

We sat outside (it was a beautiful day). All 3 Westvleteren beers on the menu with some food. I had a croque monsieur made with abbey produced ham and cheese, and my ham was pretty gristly - it was far from the best croque I had in Belgium. But the service was quick, the beers spectacular, and the sky was sunny.

They had a delicious bar snack of pickles and pearl onions. The only disappointment was that they didn't sell beer-to-go on weekends. A terrific spot.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Domingo
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

There isn't a lot to say about In De Vrede, but that's a good thing.
You want to drink the 3 Westvleteren beers and get some nice snack food? This is the place to do it. It's near Poperinge which is roughly a 2-hour drive from Brussels and hour drive from Brugge. In the grand scheme of things, that's not that far to drink 3 world-class beers.
As expected, it's isolated and located at the end of a winding series of country roads. The Abbey is just up the street, too. It's a beautiful area...even on a rainy day.
The menu is straightforward enough. They offer the 3 Westvleteren beers (Blonde, 8/Dubbel, and 12/Quad) and small sandwiches and snacks. I highly recommend the local cheese that is also made by the monks. It's delicious and approachable. The cake made with hops is also tasty and unique.
Service is fine. Typical for Belgium. Prices are extremely low considering the typical cost for Westvleteren bottles elsewhere.
Want beer to go? That can be a little trickier, but it IS available. When we arrived at noon on a Tuesday and there was a sign specifically stating (in English no less) that beer was currently unavailable. Pretty disheartening, huh? That said, at 1PM the sign mysteriously disappeared and a line formed by the gift shop. In other words, don't give up if you see the sign. 6-packs were 20 Euros each and they had all 3 varieties in branded boxes. Each person could buy up to 12 bottles. They appeared to have 40-50 visible boxes of each type, but I have no idea if there is more out of sight.
Westvleteren typically sells for 11-20 Euros per bottle in Brussels and the setting is beautiful, so I highly recommend making the trek if you can. I'll definitely be heading back when I go back to Belgium.

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Photo of McMegaRad
3.94/5  rDev -5.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.25 | selection: 5 | food: 2.75

Photo of desint
4.31/5  rDev +3.1%
vibe: 2.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Photo of Sixpoint
4.18/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

Photo of Rifugium
3.66/5  rDev -12.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3.5

This is the touristy portion of your Westvleteren trip. You visit the monastery and witness the serenity within, then get the contrasting atmosphere of this more commercialized restaurant. In de Vrede could easily be any basic family-focused eatery in the world, but when you make the trip to Westvleteren, you obviously should be going here.

Across the way from the brewery/abbey, a verdant walkway leads you to the In de Vrede. Inside is quite spacious with a lot of seating, and even early in the day, the place is packed. There is no bar, just table service. Beer selection is limited to the three abbey beers, as you would expect (bottle pours). You can purchase Westvleteren bottles many places in Belgium, but you'll probably never find them at the prices offered at the source. And if you're lucky--as I was--there may be 6-pack sales in the gift shop...look for a line to form suddenly, and you'll know that's what it's for. Twenty euros for 6 bottles of Westy12? Sure, I'll go for that. Plenty of other merch and dry goods available as well. Lining up for cases/crates at the brewery is not something I've personally experienced, so I have no real advice to give on that.

Service was spotty and somewhat hectic, but understandably so, as there were only a few servers tending a very large crowd. Food options were limited to snacky items and meat-and-cheese-plate style sandwiches; everything we had was tasty.

Westvleteren and In de Vrede makes for a good outing during a trip to Belgium. The restaurant isn't a place I'd normally go to if it were in a city (just not my preferred atmosphere when I'm enjoying a beer), but it's definitely a destination that's worth the trip. Make sure you visit De Struise as well, as it's only about 10 minutes away.

 1,766 characters

Photo of stevoj
4.71/5  rDev +12.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

As this is the only place to get Westvleteren, the selection can’t be beat. Had the 12 with dinner, the 8 with dessert and finished with the blonde. Truly a day to be remembered...

 182 characters

Photo of BenBreeg
3.73/5  rDev -10.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

Photo of dabone
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Enjoyable place that serves Westys. Good atmosphere, good luck buying a six pack of 12's.

89 characters

Photo of HookemHoos
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of ninkasibrew
4.39/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Photo of Highbury09
4.48/5  rDev +7.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75

Photo of GJ40
4.54/5  rDev +8.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4

We finally made the pilgrimage and it was well worth it. Unfortunately they weren't selling any beer in the shop. So we sat down and sampled the 6, 8 and 12 along with a cheese and bread plate. It was fantastic! The crowd seemed a mix of beer travelers, religious travelers and locals.

We came back the next day and they had all three beers for sale in the shop. Unfortunately, we were running low on space so we bought only a six of 8 and another of 12. I think we could have gotten double that.

The experience is somewhat limited but still well worth a visit.

 564 characters

Photo of simoen
3.89/5  rDev -6.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 2.75

Photo of almostjay
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This place feels pretty "antiseptic", but if you're in search of the XII (which I think people might not be anymore?) you should feel pretty grateful that this place exists. I think I had a ham and cheese sandwich while I was there as well, it was pretty good. Also, watch out for grain harvesters on the little rural roads as you head back to civilization.

 357 characters

Photo of Amehring
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of rodzm14
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of samEBC
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of reduction
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of Footballtennishockeygolf
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Located about 45 minutes by foot from Poperinge which provides the best connections via train to the rest of Belgium. The walk is incredibly scenic as you walk amongst the very hop fields that are used to cultivate the ingredients that go into Westvleteren's beer. The pub pops up seemingly in the middle of nowhere along with the monastery right next door. The back porch offers a picturesque view of the countryside as you sample what is considered by some to be the best beer in the world. An amazing experience to say the least

 532 characters

Photo of JackNip
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of WynnO
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of SStein
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Typical slow European service. Sometimes has beer for sale, sometimes not. Worth sitting around and drinking a the 3 Westvleteren beers. The Trappist Ice Cream is amazing, especially paired with the Blonde.

 213 characters

Photo of aoampm
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of endovelico
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

When it comes down to it, a trip to Belgium isn't complete until you've had a taste of the forever-mythical-status Westvleteren beers. Part of the charm of achieving this is that there is really only one way to do it. To head deep into West Flanders, cross the Popenringe hop fields, through the barley fields and stop at one Sint-Sixtus Abbey is really a magical journey in itself. I don't know what was more memorable to me; Actually being vis-à-vis with “the” abbey that I, as a beer lover had seen so many times mentioned in literature and conversations or that just at a stone's throw a modest beer garden was sizzling with dozens of people casually enjoying their favourite Westie.

What I hope to convey with this short preambule, is that this isn't as simple as looking at prices and offerings in the pubs carte. It's hard to not let intangibles get to you. You're about to drink Westvleteren, in the Mecca-country of the beer world, within a proverbial arms-reach of immense golden grain fields. Yes, it is the only place officially serving Westvleteren. Yes, it is also remarkably cheap (especially if you're conditioned to expect a lot more, because you've paid too much attention to black-market prices over the years) and yes the food is actually quite decent. However, where this place excels is at giving you the authentic feeling that you're about to drink the best beer in the world, in the best most adequate possible setting.

 1,449 characters

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In de Vrede in Westvleteren, Belgium
93 out of 100 based on 75 ratings.