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The Trappist: A European Ale House In Sunny California

By Jessica Metcalf

Love beer? Make a pilgrimage to The Trappist in Oakland, CA. Stephen Laborde, GM of the Trappist, explains that, "After numerous trips to Europe (Belgium and Holland in particular) the owners of the Trappist set out to create an establishment here in the states that offered the same elevated beer drinking experience they received over there." Featuring a staggering 25 rotating beers on tap, the Trappist also serves 100 different Belgian, Dutch, Scandinavian, and American craft brews. If you can't find a beer you like here, it's not worth drinking!

Laborde explains that the business has benefitted from a growing interest in craft beer. "I believe the fuel behind the American Craft Beer Movement is the current obsession with everything we put into our mouths. The Bay Area is awash in all things craft from pizza to juice to donuts. It only seems reasonable that brewers would want to jump into this fray and up the craftsmanship in their products." There is no reason why drinking beer should be any less of a delicious and decadent experience than enjoying a palatable meal or confection. The Trappist also trains its staff to serve each beer in the correct glassware at the correct temperature.

Want some food to go with your brew? The Trappist also offers a carefully cultivated menu that features culinary treats created by Chef Michael O'Brien. Dishes are prepared with seasonal products and with an eye towards beer-friendliness. The menu includes such items as house-made beer nuts with cayenne pepper, a grilled cheese sandwich that includes goat, Gruyere and Provolone cheeses with fresh herbs, and an Imperial Stout chocolate mousse topped with toasted hazelnuts and whipped cream- a perfect way to finish a beer-centric meal.

The Trappist holds true to its European roots with an interior inspired by the owners' favorite pubs in Belgium and the Netherlands. The building itself is 1870s Victorian, so even with the Belgian flair, The Trappist retains a Victorian Oakland feel.

Laborde himself finds it hard to choose just one favorite beer, "I work with so many different beers every day that it's hard to say which one is my favorite." Try them for yourself and enjoy the flavor and ambiance of a European ale house in Oakland, California.

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About The Author

J.L. Metcalf has a Bachelor's degree in English from Rhode Island College. She has...

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