If you like the Stella Artois beer, you are in for a treat when staying in Leuven. This town in Belgium is the definitely the reigning capital for brewing beer, house to the headquarters for Inbev – the second largest brewery in the world and the Stella Artois producer. Whether you are a beer lover or just curious to see how they make this fabulous beer, you must drop by for a tour of the brewery when you are in Belgium. A historic beer town, Leuven is known for many centuries of Flemish tradition in brewing premium beer, which has built its reputation as a brewing nation. Indeed, the logo of Stella Artois says Anno 1366, which alludes to the first ever record of someone brewing in the city of Leuven. This record was found in the city's tax and it belonged to a local brewpub known as Den Hoorn. The origin of the beer Stella Artois goes back to the 1900s when it started as a Christmas brew. It was named as Stella after the Latin word for star. Although Belgium is mostly known for its sales in the international sphere, the pilsner lagers like Stella are more frequently consumed in the domestic market.
Indulge your love for beer with a brewery tour
Block your calendar as these tours are held only on Saturdays and Sundays at 1 pm in Dutch and at 3 pm in English. It offers an interactive explanation of the brand's history, how the brewing process works, and how it is bottled in the fast bottling and canning lines. At the end of the tour, you get to taste the beer in its purest form in the bar on the rooftop of the brewery. The tour usually lasts about 1.5 hours and you also get a sample bag as a gift. If you are traveling with a larger group, you can choose from different options for your tour: Beer Tour, Classic Tour, Draught Tour or Classic Tour VIP. Check their website for more details and make sure you book three weeks in advance, as tours tend to get full.
The brewery is located in the heart of the University of Leuven, only a 15-minute walk from the train station. It might be tricky to find the entrance on Dijledreef street. So, plan to get there a little earlier than the tour start time as visitors can't join once the tour has started.
Shop for Stella Artois goodies
Visit the brand's shop at the end of the tour. You will find different accessories and gadgets, especially amusing for beer lovers. Buy some souvenirs or take some beers home.