Bars and Estaminets

The region is home to some of the most interesting and charming bars in the whole of France whose unique appeal owes much to the area's Flemish roots.

The name 'Estaminet' is used commonly to describe a traditional bar which often also serves food. In recent times there has been a welcome revival of these traditional establishments. Their success has inevitably led to a few people jumping on the 'Estaminet' bandwagon.

The restaurant owner wishing to attract the gullible, only has to hang a few old farm and kitchen items on the wall, add 'Estaminet' to the sign outside and Bingo, another new 'genuine' Estaminet is born.


For the purposes of this site I use the criteria below to classify true Estaminets.

  • Beer has to be on offer, food may or maynot be available
  • If food is served, this should not prevent one feeling free to visit the bar for it's main purpose....the convivial consumption of beer.

Establishments are given my ratings as follows:

  • Genuine Estaminet as per the criteria above E
  • At least one beer from an independent brewer B
  • Meals available F

Click on the menu for Jim's bar Tips.