Monday, March 1, 2010

Visitors to Hoppy Loft Will Now Be Able to Smell Their Hoppy Beers.

Just a brief piece of news, or two or three, as we pore over this weekend's beer lists for mysteries and surprises.

First of all, according to its latest newsletter, Delirium's Hoppy Loft is now open Monday to Saturday, 6 p.m. to 4 a.m. It's also gone... wait for it... non-smoking. Previously it was only open weekends, and it was clouded when crowded. Not anymore.

I was there a few weeks ago, after the new smoking ban had passed, hoping to find that at least the Loft had gone clean. I wouldn't expect a fat cash cow like Delirium, dependent on mobs of chain smoking teenagers, to go totally cold turkey... But I thought at least the Hoppy Loft might. It's theoretically aimed at a different audience, after all. One that likes to sniff, you know, hops. No such luck that night. I'm happy to see they've found some sense.

I'd like to compile an up-to-date list of which beery joints in town have gone smoke-free. In my theoretical free time. Meanwhile, off the top of my head, you can now smell your beer in these places: the Moeder Lambics (St-Gilles and Fontainas both), Delirium Hoppy Loft (but not the rest of Delirium), Poechenellekelder and Nüetnigenough. Please tell me more if you know them.

The other bit is that this Friday only, to mark ZBF weekend, the Hoppy Loft will open at 2 p.m. When you also think about the nearby Night of Great Thirst, the Cantillon open brew day, and Moeder Lambic's Cantillonaganza*, Brussels is becoming a smart base of operations for incoming festgoers.

*Not the event's actual name, but maybe it should be.


  1. And if I´m not mistaken, Bier Circus was first to go non-smoking?

  2. Bier Circus has always been a proper restaurant, so it was non-smoking already. Same with other beery restaurants like Restobieres and Les Brassins.

    Smoking has been banned in restaurants in Belgium since 2007, with many places avoiding the ban by selling only "light meals." Brasseries kept smoking, even though you could eat there any time of day. (They served bread with their meals instead of frites, so obviously they were light meals, right? Nevermind the giant bowl of spaghetti next to it.)

  3. Just as another beer cafe goes non-smoking this news snippet come out: 'More Belgians are lighting up - For the second year in a row there has been an increase in the number of Belgians who smoke. Thirty-two percent of Belgians now light up on a daily basis.'

    Interesting to see if this goes down next year with more places going non-smoking since Jan 1.

  4. I think it's wonderful if more people smoke, if that makes them happy. I'm all for it. As long as it doesn't interfere with my eating and drinking. Because that's what makes me happy.

  5. I was at A La Mort Subite, and I think it is also non-smoking.
    The hoppy loft at the Delirium is a great place. I think that the Delirium is very versatile. It is divided in three levels: heaven (the hoppy loft), limbo (the street level place) and hell (the crowded-smoky-underground level with the big menu)!

  6. Felipe: Thanks, I forgot to mention Mort Subite, it is indeed non-smoking now. And I think that's a perfect analogy for Delirium most nights and weekends. Shame we have to trek down to Hell to get that Rulles Estivale on draft.