“The respect reserved for wine in most countries is in Belgium also accorded to beer. No country can match Belgium in the gastronomic interest of its beers. No country has so many distinct styles of beer (though several have more breweries). No country has beers that are so complex in character as the finest in Belgium. No country has so many individualistic brews, nor does any country have such a sophisticated beer cuisine (extending far beyond the dishes that are commonly associated with beer).
The spontaneously fermenting "wild" lambic beers of the Senne valley represent a tradition unique to Belgium. So do the tart, acidic, "sour" beers of Flanders. In the production of top fermenting brews and wheat beers, Belgium is one of the world leaders. No country has as many "methode champenoise" beers, in which a second or even third fermentation is induced in the bottle either by a dosage of yeast or a blending of young and mature brews. No other country has so persisted with the use of fruits, herbs and spices in beer. Germany and Belgium are the only two countries to have kept alive on any scale the practice of brewing in monasteries; only Belgium and The Netherlands have Trappist beers.
Belgium (the size of Maryland) has three languages, ten million people, and 35,000 places in which beer is served. That is twice the density even of pubs in Britain.”
– From Michael Jackson's The Great Beers of Belgium: A Complete Guide and Celebration of a Unique Culture - published and distributed by Vanberg & DeWulf
Bier in Belgium is not just a beverage – it is an experience. Many, if not most, breweries and specific types of bier have their own glass. Glass shape can greatly affect aromatic presentation, head formation, even how well carbonation will be sustained. The ideal in these areas varies from beer to beer, thus so do the glasses. And in Belgium, you’d never serve bier in the wrong glass – it would lessen the experience. Café Hollander subscribes to that same theory, keeping well over 40 different glasses behind the bar to ensure that your Belgian bier experience is the best it can be.