When I first started writing about beer, most of the “Great Beers of Belgium” celebrated in Michael Jackson’s groundbreaking 1991 book weren’t available in Atlanta. In fact, they weren’t common anywhere in the U.S.
Jackson was the late, great British writer who elevated beer to a status once reserved for fine wine and spirits. “Great Beers of Belgium” gave new life to brewing in Belgium and Jackson’s work inspired beer lovers on both sides of the Atlantic, people who not only explored and savored the breadth of Belgian styles, but began brewing new versions of the classics.
Ommegang, New Belgium, New Glarus, Boulevard, Allagash, and Lost Abbey are well know for creating Belgian-style beers and both New Belgium and Boulevard employ Belgian brewers.
But nowadays, most American craft breweries are making some sort of Belgian-inspired beer, from wheat and pale ale to dubbel, triple and quad styles. And takes on Belgian sour beers are arguably the hottest trend,