Balancing Extremes

image02-mainBy John Rega

The Struise Brouwers and Brouwerij Alvinne have arisen over the past decade to reinterpret and challenge Belgium’s beer traditions for a global audience. All somewhat by chance. John Rega asks how and why.

Travelling the world and installing his own custom-made brewhouse have been high notes in Glenn Castelein’s relatively brief brewing career. Yet he still maintains that the best times were spent hanging out with his buddies in the garden shed.

Castelein and brother-in-law Davy Spiessens played darts and watched football while dipping into their homemade beer. But as the batches got bigger and earned some local notoriety, the excise-man came round to spoil the fun. They were forced to turn their hobby into a legitimate operation, and in 2004 Brouwerij Alvinne was born.

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