I was quite excited to get this book for Christmas because this is a style that I don’t know the history of so I dove right into reading it (after finishing up the 2nd book in the Song of Ice and Fire).
First off, this is a translation and it shows in parts. Lot’s of exclamation points and some odd transitions from sentence to sentence. But it excels in two spots that are most important to me.
One, it delves into the history of this beer briefly before expanding to the history of each of the brewers and blenders. It is a treat to learn about where Cantillon started and where it is now. Literally it is a history if who started it and where it is now You even get a bit of travel guidance as well with some notations of where to go to order a glass.
Second, the photographs are great. For someone who has not been inside one of these breweries, or the country of Belgium for that matter, these shots really take you in front of and behind the scenes. Some captions for the photographs would have been helpful though. But that doesn’t detract from seeing a well used coolship filled with beer.
One jarring note is how often male inheritance of breweries is mentioned. As if a woman couldn’t brew these specific styles! It is a bit great-grandfatherly for my taste.
Overall an interesting look into a very historic and specific style. I felt bad not drinking that style exclusively while reading it.