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The history of
BOON brewery
Lembeek, the former “city state” between the Duchy of Brabant and Hainaut situated
on a river bend in the Zenne Valley, once had 43 spontaneous-fermentation breweries.
The beer brewed here was dubbed “lambic”, derived from the place name “Lembeek”.
BOON Brewery is Lembeek’s only remaining brewery.
The first mention of BOON Brewery can be traced back to 1680, in connection with a
farm and brewery/distillery in Lembeek. In 1860 Louis Paul bought the brewery, which
only brewed lambic and faro. From 1875 he also began bottling geuze-lambic. Pierre
Troch bought the brewery in 1898, and later, after the 1927 economic crisis, it came
into the hands of Jozef De Vits. His son René became famous for the production of
mild lambic and fine geuze. Because René De Vits was childless, he sold the brewery
to Frank Boon in 1975.
On Frank Boon’s initiative, a recognition dossier was submitted in 1995 in order to obtain
a European Guaranteed Traditional Speciality (GTS) label for traditional “old geuze”. Of-
ficial recognition followed two years later. With this recognition, the difference between
traditional old geuze and filtered – commercial – geuze has been made clear. With this,
Frank Boon is heralding a real revival of authentic lambic and geuze. In 1997 Frank Boon
became co-founder of HORAL, the Hoge Raad voor de Authentieke Lambiek (High
Council for Authentic Lambic).
Brewers Frank Boon and Jos Boon