Belgium is legendary for their beers. The monks of the country turned a simple beverage into some of the most complex and extraordinary drinks in the world. In fact, it is often said of Belgian beer that they are like wines.Now, witness the rise of the Belgian wine industry.
Historically, Belgium was too cool for a great deal of wine production, but now as the world seems to be getting warmer, grapes are growing much better there. Some of the nicest wines in the world are coming from Belgium and the growth of the industry is exciting.
There are over 75 vineyards in Belgium and the number is growing every year. Below is a short list of just a few of the vintners that have caught our eye.
Schorpion Wines – Located in Vliermaal, this small vineyard (2 hectares) produces some of Belgium’s finest sparkling wines. With Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Blanc grapes, Schorpion produces wonderfully complex sparkling wines that suit nearly every palate.
Making simple white and red blends (Waes Wit and Waes Rood) , this vineyard is a perfect example of traditional winemaking. There is minimal use of pesticides and the wines that they create have a wonderful grace and clean flavours. Not only that we quite like the Waes Hedgehog.
With Chardonnay and Pinot Noir vines, the 2.2 hectares vineyard is able to make some astounding wines. The first still wine domain to win a gold medal in international competition (Mundus Vini in Germany), Crutzberg is producing wines that are wonderfully blended for drinkability.
One of the larger of the Belgian vineyards, Aldenyck produces Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Gris Barrique. They currently have multiple vintages that include some that are extensively aged. Their Pinot Sparkling Brut is a lovely wine for celebrations, even if you are just celebrating dinner.
For over 120 years, Grafé Lecocq has been producing great wines. There are 1200 oaken tonnes for ageing under the Citadel of Namen. Their quality is outstanding, based on their experience. The vineyards remote location allows the vintners to control every aspect of the grapes.
With natural aging, mature vines, and over a century of experience, Grafé Lecocq is easily as high quality as any French vintner.
Domaine du Chenoy
Located in Namur, Domaine du Chenoy makes about 20 different wines. Highly rated by critics and the public, this vintner makes red white, and rosé wines that are consistently well-blended and well received. The primary effort of the vintners at Domaine du Chenoy is to reflect the unique tastes of Belgian grapes in the wines they create.
From left to right: Butte aux Lièvres – Rouge, Taille aux Renards – Rouge, Fleur de Vigne – Rosé, Perle de Wallonie – Vin mousseux, Combes aux Hérons – Blanc, La Foliette – Blanc, Eclat de Rose – Rosé Pétillant.