Kwak is a fairly strong (about 8% ABV) beer from Belgium.

First brewed by Pauwel Kwak in 1791, it's an interesting drink. It has a blend of sweetness, fruity flavour and sharpness. How much of this sharpness is down to the ingredients and how much is down to the fact that it's quite alcoholic I'm not sure.

An interesting feature of Kwak is that it is traditionally served in strange glasses which taper down to a glass bulb in the bottom. This means that the glass has to be served suspended in a wooden holder because it will not stand up on its own.

I've heard of two possible reasons for this. One is that when drunk quickly, there is a loud "Quack" sound when the volume of beer in the glass dips below the start of the bulb. The other is that coach drivers in Belgium (as in horse and carriage, not minibus) were not allowed to accept an offer of a drink from their passengers because it made their employers look bad if their drivers were seen to drink and then take charge of the coach.

Apparently the coach drivers used to hang the glass by the bulb from the chassis of the coach and retrieve it when the passengers weren't looking.

I don't know which (if either) of these is true. I've never actually heard anyone quack a Kwak. On the other hand, I don't see why the Belgian coach drivers didn't just drink from the bottle...

Whatever the case, I can reccommend Kwak for your next drinkin' session. Just remember its strength and be responsible.

Incidentally, I hope people fully appreaciate the trouble I went to in the preparation for this node as I actually went to Brussels.

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