Deca brewery was built after World War One by the Vanneste family, who previously ran a brewery situated at what is now the Church Square at Woesten, Belgium. The brewery was destroyed during the war, and afterwards, the Council decided to use the site to build the Square, which meant reconstruction had to be done elsewhere. The Vanneste family hence decided to rebuild its brewery on the Elverdingestraat, where it is currently located.
The family had no successors, and in 1926 the brewery was sold to De Caestecker family. They renamed it “Brewery to Deca”, using the first four letters of their family name. When the Christiaens family later acquired the brewery, they decided to keep the name, primarily for branding purposes.
To this day, the Christiaens are still the full owners of the brewery. Father Georges Christiaens bought the brewery in 1980 from the family De Caestecker. At the time, Georges was building his career in Africa, developing breweries on Nelson Mandela’s continent. He was also responsible for marketing the beers produced by these breweries.
Nonetheless, combining George’s job in Africa became too difficult when he also had to manage the brewery in Belgium. He decided to delegate operations to another company, which unfortunately went bankrupt early in the 1990s.
Georges decided to step down from his activities in Africa to focus his attention fully on Deca in Woesten. During this time, the brewery launched several beers under the “Deca” label.
Georges passed away unexpectedly in 2013 in a car accident. His sudden passing positioned Nicolas, his son, as managing director of the brewery until today.
As a tribute to Georges, the brewery developed Georges IV- as in the 4th generation of brewers- a blond beer at 8% abv, with added whisky and aged one year on oak casks. The beer was still resting in the casks when he passed on, and he never had the chance to taste his work.
Nicolas is the fifth brewer in his family genealogy. Often, as referred in these traditional Belgian brewing families, he was “spoon fed” on the art of beer making by his father and grandfather, both of which he considered great mentors in his life.
Nicolas is a cosmopolite. Born in Lebanon, he eventually ended up in Switzerland, after residing in Ethiopia, Crete and Cameroon. His mother was from Switzerland, and after he finished university in Lausanne, Nicolas kept the Swiss nationality. The family moved to Woesten in 1991, after which Nicolas took a three-year course in brewing technologies at Hogeschool University in Ghent.
Today he runs the brewery together with his wife Katrien, employing 5 full time staff. Brewmeister Nicolas runs operations, whilst Katrien focuses on marketing.
Her prime concern is brand awareness in the wider area. Until recently, the brewery made no efforts to market their beers, until Katrien entered the family business and provided her skills. Important decisions were hence made to increase visibility by joining beer festivals and reach out to more independent bars and restaurants.
Last year, a tap room was built, currently open to visitors every Saturday afternoon. It is also used to welcome groups for guided tours, followed by a beer tasting session.
While ambitions remain to expand operations, brewery Deca’s main intentions is not to double their income, but to remain a local craft brewery.
The Christiaens family’s strategy is to remain artisanal in their approach and to allow visitors to meet the creators behind the beers.
ABV : 8%
VOL : 33 cl
Eye: Pours fairly hazy orange colour, topped with thin and very nonlasting offwhite head.
Aroma: Mild aroma, a bit of yeast, gentle spices and some dry fruits.
Taste: Light sweet, light grainy, some fruits and a bit caramel. Dry mouthfeel.
Food: Calf stew (slightly spicy), Goulash, Pulled porc / chicken
ABV : 8%
VOL : 33 cl
Anecdote: This beer is dedicated to Father George, the 4th in line from in the Christiaens family to become a brewer.
Eye: Pours a slightly hazy golden/orange colour with a thin to medium sized off-white head.
Aroma: Citrus, orange, vanilla, spice with hints of whisky, wood and honey.
Taste: Whisky and wood more pronounced. A fairly citrus, spice and alcohol finish. Medium to full bodied with a slick oily mouthfeel.
Food: Lamb crowns, Matured cheddar
ABV : 6.5%
VOL : 33 cl
Eye: Clear orange beer, big creamy irregular off-white head, stable, adhesive, leaving a nice lacing in the glass.
Aroma: Metallic, malty, bit of citrus, little fruity.
Taste: Floral hops, red fruits, good bitterness, yeasty, light butterscotch underneast, soft, oily mourth feel, decent depth.
Food: Strong spicy food, Classic curry, Milder Blue cheese, Persimmon rice pudding.
ABV : 8%
VOL : 33 cl
Eye: Murky brown beer with a thin white to off-white head.
Aroma: Fruity, fig, raisin, stewed plum, prune, apple, ginger cookies, floral, caramel, toffee, banana, cherry, light dried spices, bit of sherbet.
Taste: Stewed plum, apple, bread, raisin, lightly spiced, cake, candy sugar, lightly bitter hop. Big big fruity beer that’s not too heavy of the palate.
Food: Beef stew, Duck breast fillet (slightly sweetened), French Morbier cheese.
Visiting Brewery Deca
The brewery allows visitors to assist in the entire brewing process with a tour from Tuesday to Saturday for at least 10 people. Requests need to be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Pricing: €10/adult and €6 for children under 12 years of age.
Tap room only open on Saturdays from 1pm till 6pm. We recommend sending an email before making the journey.