Objectively and by all accounts these local beers are delicious and, if you’re lucky enough, you can sample them in the presence of the brewers themselves.
The days of every village having its own brewery may be long gone, but in the Charleroi Metropolitan Area the brewing sector is enjoying something of a heyday. Whether you’re a connoisseur of good beer, an amateur brewer yourself or you just love malt and hops, join us on this journey of discovery as we visit the region’s (micro)breweries to witness at first hand the expertise and share a love of flavour in a relaxed setting.
Local beers and microbreweries
Several beverages made from hops are brewed in the region. These are known and appreciated to different degrees by the locals, who never miss an opportunity to sample one.
The Silenrieux Brewery in Cerfontaine
In Silenrieux, the beers are made using flour, malt, hops and spices, all produced organically. Feel free to knock on the door of this brewery: they organise guided visits. You will of course have the opportunity to try out the beer that is brewed here, but other local products as well.
The Manufacture Urbaine, and the Pays Noir Brewery in Charleroi
In Charleroi, there is a lot of talk about street art, theatrical creations, dance… But the art of brewing is also highly respected. Discover the Manufacture Urbaine, who are very active in putting on Charleroi events, and their associates the Pays Noir Brewery, which offers everyone a chance to brew their own beer.
The Pico brasserie Escaillonne in Chimay
This brewery was born out of a passion for beer, shared by a father and son duo. Their bold flavour palate offers something for everyone. Try, for example, the “Gratouille”, a beer made with nettles, or the “Paternel”, the first beer to be made at the family mill.
The Brootcoorens Brewery in Erquelinnes
After several brewing experiments conducted from his garage, Alain managed to create a 100% natural beer. He then set up Belgium’s first hop growing institute, just next to the brewery, with over 300 hop plants.
La Aulne Abbey Brewery, the Rogère Farm-Brewery and the Fou du Roi Brewery in Thuin
The Aulne Abbey brews ancient beers in the tradition of the Cistercian monks. Although it is not possible to visit the brewery, you can sample the finished product amid the abbey’s ruins, in a magical setting.
Saqwé, from the La Rogère Brewery, has made more than one Charleroi-dweller nostalgic for the days of yore, with its very Walloon name. A thirst-quenching drop, this is a Saison-type beer, brewed using 3 types of malt and 3 types of hops.
Also be sure to try out Galipette, from the Fou du Roi Brewery, a highly elaborate beer (it took over 20 attempts to get the brew just right and hit upon the best flavour). Pico, with its base notes of lime and cactus, is also a minor miracle best enjoyed under the sun’s rays.
The Franchimont Brewery and the Bierylium Brewery, in Philippeville
Chinelle, named after the street where the brewery is located, is served during local festivities. Thirsty for a challenge, this brewer created the first beer in the world to be made out of parsnip. He also developed Trignolette, in homage to Arthur Masson’s famous character ‘Toine Culot’, based on an old recipe dating back over a century.
Although young in age, the Bierylium Brewery is already enjoying local recognition. Following EVO and “Plan B”, the brewer is hoping to bring out a third beer this year.
Local beers of international repute
These beers, made right here at home, are now exported to all four corners of the globe.
The Brasserie de Chimay in Chimay
These beers first made by Trappist monks are distributed in a third of the world’s countries. Blue, red, white, golden… they are all ideal for anyone far from home and pining for the homeland. That doesn’t stop the Charleroi residents who don’t venture quite as far from enjoying them just as much.
The Des Fagnes Brewery in Couvin
Make a pit stop at this brewery to find out how these famous beers are made and maybe stay and enjoy one with a meal, too.
Active on the international stage, this brewery has adapted for overseas markets to boost its exports.
Beers from home brewed elsewhere
Mention must also be made of these beers, typical of the region, brewed in the local style by enthusiasts.
Bisous m’chou in Charleroi
Bisous m’chou, brewed by the company PlanBis in Binche, is the Charleroi beer to enjoy among friends. Four friends (Kevin, Malory, Xavier and Laurent) got together in 2015 to create a beer as a way of honouring their city. It can be sampled in various establishments across the region and during local festivities. In the longer term, PlanBis is hoping to open its own brewery.
Fleurusienne in Fleurus
Fleurusienne is available as a brown beer, a blonde, triple and a Bernadine grand cru. It was created in 2013 by Christian Leclercq, an artisan cork maker. He decided to give the town where he was born, Fleurus, its own beer. The beers are brewed in Warsage and Bovigny (Lupulus Brewery, formerly known as “Les 3 Fourquets”) by Dominique Denis. You can find these beers in the Bouchonnerie Leclercq, at the shop Les Plaisirs du 604 and in the Boucherie Ganty.
A (micro)brewery tour
The Charleroi Metropolitan Area has no shortage of local beers. Embark upon a full tour of the local (micro)breweries, with some of them enjoying an international reputation.