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A short history of the Abbey and its beer
It is in 1121 that Norbert de Gennep, founder of the order of Prémontrés, founded the Abbey of Floreffe (which is named after flora : Latin for flower), at the request of the Counts of Namur.
Out of all the Abbeys in the area, Floreffe quickly asserts itself as the most important. During the following centuries they found numerous abbeys. Let us quote for example the Abbey of Leffe (1152), founded on grounds which had been received as a private domain. Other abbeys were created in France, Germany and even one in the Holy Land.
Around the year 1250, a Mill-Brewery is built within the Abbey. The first beers of the Abbey of Floreffe were brewed.
Up to the 18th. century, the Abbey of Floreffe and that of Mielmont formed a shield that protected Namur. It is after this long period of war that taxed the Abbey of Floreffe until the 18th century that the buildings which still make up the Abbey of today were built.
The abbey thrived until 1794, date on which the French revolution arrives in our region. The Abbey of Floreffe is deserted by the monks and put up for sale. It is repurchased by associated monks but there will never be an important enough community reunited in this locality to restore the Norbertins. The production of beer is obviously abandoned.
In 1842, three survivors of the monks of Floreffe remain, the last of these dies in 1850.
Faced with these disappearances, measures were taken for the conservation of the Abbey on the site of Floreffe. With this in mind, it is initially a seminar then a school which occupied the walls of the Abbey.
In 1960, the Headmaster of the College of the Abbey of Floreffe decides, in order to collect money for the maintenance of the buildings, to restore the Mill-Brewery and to start the production of beer once more. The Mill-Brewery is one of the bases of the tourist centre of attraction of the Abbey. As for the beer, it is initially entrusted to the Het Anker brewery in Malines. In 1983 the range of beers of the Abbey of Floreffe is entrusted to the Lefebvre Brewery. It is initially composed of 3 beers: Double, Triple Floreffe and Prima Melior and will be extended further with a lager and white variety.
An acknowledged Belgian Abbey beer
Fulfilling the 3 necessary conditions of the patent, the beers of the Abbey of Floreffe, produced by the Lefebvre Brewery, are certified Acknowledged Belgian Abbey Beer.
Visits of the Abbey are organized all year round. As for the Mill-Brewery, this allows you to taste the countryside products manufactured for the Abbey.
For more information, surf on :www.abbaye-de-floreffe.be