The slightly uncomfortable proximity of a Manneken Pis statue.
There’s really nothing like a good Belgian beer garden.
Nothing except Bel, a casual new Belgian-inspired retreat filled with brews and sausages and other things that provoke Belgian-inspired thoughts—now open in the Mission.
It’s dimly lit with long wooden banquettes, red walls, pressed-tin ceilings. (Your slideshow, it is here.) You’ll bring some friends and probably end up at the bar, under the statue and the streetlamps. Yeah. Streetlamps. The owners wanted to bring some of the outdoors in, or whatever.
Now’s when you’ll turn your attention to one of the flat-screens above the bar that list the daily rotating brews on draft: Delirium Tremens, Petrus Sour, Ovila Saison. Excellent channel.
And while you figure out the difference between a dubbel, a strong and a quad, you’ll probably work up an appetite (here’s a menu) for beef brisket in Flemish dark ale, moules-frites with beer-based sauce or beer-and-cheese soup.
The theme’s a little on the nose.
And what a perfect nose.