25 Essential Belgian Beers
Though the U.S. is home to the world’s most diverse beer culture, Belgium could be seen as the country with the most unique beer scene. Whereas other countries with rich brewing traditions saw their native styles spread across the world—German lagers took over the globe, and English pale ales influenced America’s craft beer obsession in its early days—Belgian beer culture stayed insular, devoted to traditional methods and styles rarely seen outside of the small country.
In the past two decades, Americans have finally fully embraced what’s been happening in Belgium—and today styles from abbey ales to gueuzes are brewed on American shores. Back in Belgium, much of the beer culture remains focused on time-tested brews. In selecting these 25 Belgian beers, we focused on acknowledging classics while touching on most of the country’s homegrown styles. Hopefully, this list will give you a broad sense of great Belgian beers and leave you with plenty of things to try even if you’re just hitting up your local beer shop. —Mike Pomranz