Brasserie Cantillon

YOUR RATING = None |
BEER AVG
4.29/5
BEER STATS
Beers:
29
Reviews:
6,326
Ratings:
24,656
PLACE STATS
Place Score:
100
Reviews:
77
Ratings:
247
Avg:
4.64
pDev:
3.66%
 
 
Taps:
0
Bottles/Cans:
0
Cask:
N
Beer-to-Go:
Y
Brasserie CantillonBrasserie Cantillon
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar

Rue Gheude 56
Anderlecht
Brussels, 1070
Belgium

+32 25 21 49 28 | map
www.cantillon.be

Notes:
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 77 | Ratings: 247
Reviews by Dreizhen:
Photo of Dreizhen
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

I'm in love with this place.

First, I want to talk about the neighborhood. Everyone says it's in a sketchy part of town and I suppose I can understand why, but it's really not. It's just a Moroccan neighborhood that doesn't look as nice. Everyone I've encountered here has been amazingly friendly and helpful (I'm living on the next street over for the Summer) and I've never had any issues. I will say the brewery seems out of place, though. But on to the good stuff.

Once you open the door (look up for the sign as it's easy to miss) you're immediately hit by the smell. I've been to a number of breweries but this smell is something special. It's hard to put my finger on whatever it is, but I promise it will make you salivate, especially if you visit multiple times.

The tour is worth it. Do it. Don't ask any questions; just do it. Try and go on a brewing day, if possible. Drink everything available. It's ridiculously cheap, even compared to what you can buy in Brussels are stores or bars. DOn't even get me started on the challenge of acquiring some of this in the States.

Staff is very friendly and knowledgeable. Family owned and somewhat family run. They'll talk to you all day about beer. Also gave great suggestions for other places to go in Brussels. They're used to beer nerd pilgrims of all different ethnicities and languages. Every time I go I have a very pleasant experience and it's usually with a different person each time.

It would be a crime to go to Brussels and not visit this wonderful establishment. I'm honestly about to go calculate my food budget for the rest of the summer to figure out how many times I can go here. After that, it's on to figuring out how much I can take home.

Go here!

 1,727 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of chrisroarshack
4.75/5  rDev +2.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

Photo of AdamTebbs
4.45/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 3

Really fun self guided tour, staff was very friendly and was very generous with the tasting pours. Didn't have a lot to choose from to take home but this is a very worthwhile visit if you are in Brussels.

 204 characters

Photo of Spoda1983
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Stepping into Cantillon is like stepping back into history. The clean, freshly painted doors offer no hint to what lies inside, both for sight ans smell. Upon entering you are greeting with old worn concrete floors and things looks a bit dusty (and it is meant to be this way). Not like the modern sterile, well lit breweries we are used to. The smell is Cantillon. If you have ever opened a bottle you will recognize it immediately. the barnyard funk, musty, fruity, smells mixed with steeping malts. For a few Euro, you can get a guided tour through the brewery where you will see very old belt driven copper brewing equipment spanning 3 floors as well as the coolship room and a room of barrels aging beer and at the end you get 2 samples in the tasting room. Typically the on-site drinking list is quite good but it is the people who own and work at Cantillon that make the special difference. It is not that they don't take pride in their product (They do!!!), it is their attitude about it. They are extremely approachable and nice people. I have been lucky enough to have them share some young brews from the barrel or special brews or small batch brews with me. Go, spend some time there, soak up the unique ambiance, chat with the employees, you will not be sorry.

 1,273 characters

Photo of mothman
4.94/5  rDev +6.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of BigBadBeerSnob
4.47/5  rDev -3.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Photo of esktime
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

We got there March 7th, after the Public brewing session the past Saturday and they had every thing except Fou Fonne & LPK for public sale. Jean and his family were amazing and very friendly during our frequent visits

 217 characters

Photo of beerdeer
4.25/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Photo of Pletser
4.04/5  rDev -12.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4

Photo of Jow
4.71/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

To be honest it is not the most fancy place to be. They did not invest in decorations, just brown chairs in a brown environment.

Buuut the beers are awesome!!! You can taste all the cantillons, super!

 201 characters

Photo of amano_h
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

All of the reviews before mine have probably enumerated everything and anything you need to know about Cantillon in florid detail, so here's a short list of DOs and DON'Ts while at Brasserie Cantillon.

DO
1. Take the tour. The unique beers at Brasserie Cantillon can only be replicated in the unique terroir/environment within the confines of the brewery. The tour itself will reveal all the magic behind spontaneous fermentation and you will leave the place feeling like a beer scientist if you paid attention during the "introduction" given at the brewery shop by the door, and if you actually took the time to read through the booklet that they provide you as part of the tour.

2. Try as much beers in-house as possible. People from certain online communities have the tendency to just drop into the brewery shop, buy the bottles, and pop smoke. All the beers served at Cantillon are served at the perfect cellar temperature in the manner it's meant to be enjoyed. I'm sure you're excited about the prospect of trading for rare beers, but don't miss out on the opportunity to try some beers you won't find anywhere else on the planet.

3. Say hello to Jean when you see him. Jean's always busy keeping the family tradition afloat, but he's one of the most approachable brewers I've ever met who loves to talk about beer and appreciates any feedback people are willing to offer him about his family tradition. I'm not saying you should walk over while he's busy bottling or brewing during the public brewing sessions, but if you see him walking about the brewery, do take the time to say hello, introduce yourself and give him some of your thoughts about the brewery and his beers. Trust me, you won't regret it.

DON'T
1. Be one of those guys that do beer trades while at the Brewery. Seriously, this might be "okay" back in the States, but this is considered quite disrespectful, and almost borderline offensive in Belgium. God save your soul if you lack so much common sense that you actually open some other brewery's beer while at Cantillon. You're a big part of the reason why beer geeks get a bad rep.

2. Go nuts and order three-four bottles by yourself when it's obvious that you can't finish them. Pretty self-explanatory both for financial and utilitarian reasons (think of the poor beer geeks that would give you their left nut to drink the beer you just wasted!) There also seems to be this odd notion going around that you'll always be able to find someone to share your beer with while at Cantillon -- this does not quite apply if you go in the morning around when the brewery is open; I went to Cantillon five times during the seven days I've been in Belgium and I only did a "beer share" with a fellow enthusiast on the last day I was there.

3. Neglect some of the tried and true offerings in lieu of tasting whales. Yeah Fou'Foune is pretty amazing and most people would give their first born for some LPG/LPF/LPK, but some of Cantillon's more standard offerings taste amazingly different fresh out of the brewery. The most surprising instance of this was Rose de Gambrinus which was so much more tart and fruitier than I remembered out of the bottle -- for some odd reason the regular Geuze also made my mouth pucker a lot more than I remembered with past instances.

For those of you on the fence about visiting Cantillon -- it's a trip you probably won't forget, and the brewery is literally a 12 minute walk from Gare du Midi. If you're not in the Grand Place area it probably means you probably don't have anything else better to do, so why not pop in for a quick look at what 100+ years of brewing tradition looks like?

 3,648 characters

Photo of Nachojon
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

For beer lovers, this is it. It is the epicenter. Once you go Cantillon, as a drinker, as a visitor, you never go back. Great selection that you won't find ANYWHERE ELSE, EVER!!!

 178 characters

Photo of dougbreathe
4.54/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5

Photo of Euroglot
4.34/5  rDev -6.5%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4

Photo of CoryR
4.56/5  rDev -1.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5

Photo of KaeF
4.72/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Nice brewery to visit. You can get a self-guided tour and see all the equipment and barrels for yourself. The people are very friendly and Jean comes by now and then to talk to people, really friendly guy. The beers that are for on-site consumption are amazing and the overall vibe is just awesome. A lot of different nationalities with the same passion is a formula for a good day of tasting and telling stories.

 413 characters

Photo of Midwestbrew18
4.62/5  rDev -0.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5

Photo of YvesB
4.38/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 3.25

Photo of Stakebone
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Does not get any more old school than this. But what seem at first glance to be crude techniques conjure the best of what can be produced with barley juice. I read that warming temperatures are impacting production and viability of this absolute gem. I'm glad I made it there and that we Americans are following natural fermentation techniques really well these days, but not having this truly unique place would be a huge loss.

 431 characters

Photo of chitowntink
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of Iamjeff6
4.68/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of Stacey_kock
5/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

My wife and I were the only ones there. We had the whole place to ourselves for the duration of the tour.

105 characters

Photo of MatthewWalters
4.63/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25

First of all, the area in which Cantillon is situated is not horrible, but not great either. I felt uncomfortable walking around the area at night, alone, but during the day I was aware, but not wary. On the interior, it's a working brewery with a small bar and a fair sitting area. I went on the Public Brewing Session day and it was awesome. Tons of visitors from all around the world and I feel that they hosted the demand well. They had a ton of staff helping out. The tour was awesome, and our guide (I forget his name, young and short) was incredibly willing to take questions and make sure everyone heard what he was saying, even with loud equipment running around us. The selection is obviously hit or miss, and I would recommend that anyone curious check out the thread titled 'For Sale at Cantillon'. Overall, I'd love to go back, but am happy to check it off the list as I don't see myself going back to Brussels anytime soon.

 937 characters

Photo of Remiot
4.78/5  rDev +3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Photo of petermethot
4.79/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

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Brasserie Cantillon in Brussels, Belgium
100 out of 100 based on 77 ratings.