In Chester, UK, an interesting bar called The Artichoke, which has been in many Good Beer Guides, is sited alongside the canal adjacent to Old Harkers. Recently, The Artichoke had four locale real ales on draught and many foreign tap and bottled beers. There were a couple of the commercial lambics plus Budovar Original and dark.
However, two other beers on tap were quite unusual for Britain. Duchess de Bourgogne, the Flemish sour red ale, is quite rare over here. Even rarer was a third variant of Budovar – Budovar Yeast. This is a 4% unfiltered and unpasteurised version of the original. It is only available at fifty or so outlets in the UK and, apparently, requires special permission from Budovar for it to be sold here at all. A light and refreshing beer, it was definitely better than any of the filtered, pasteurised, versions.
DE KLUIS BREWERY
The De Kluis brewery, famed for the production of Hœgaarden Wit beer originally by Pierre Celis, was housed in former distillery maltings which burnt down in 1985 just five years after he had relocated there from an old soft drinks factory. [The 14 years based there had witnessed the revival of this unique brewing style in 1966, eleven years after it had died out completely following the demise of the Tomsin brewery, also in Hœgaarden village.] Rebuilt shortly afterwards with a substantial injection of capital from Interbrew, in 1992 Celis relinquished any interest in what had increasingly become an Interbrew-dominated operation at De Kluis, which they subsequently announced would close in 2006. However, by the middle of the following year, the transfer of brewing to the Jupiler plant had proved impossible and, in September 2007, it was confirmed that production would remain on the De Kluis site where AB InBev (as Interbrew had since become) continues to brew Hœgaarden to this day.
After parting company with Interbrew in 1990, Pierre Celis founded a micro-brewery in Austin, Texas, that same year. Afterwards, in 1992, Van Steenberge, of Ertvelde in Belgium, obtained the rights to brew Celis White for the European market. Pierre Celis died in 2011, aged 86.