Bottom-fermented beers, or pilsners, are the most widely distributed. ‘Bottom-fermented’ refers to lower temperatures (between 5° and 10 °C / 41° and 50°F) at which fermentation takes place and the type of yeast, which sinks to the bottom of the tank after several days. Bottom-fermentation beers have a more stable and consistent flavour.
Pils (4,5 to 5,5 vol.%) is a golden, clear beer with a softly bitter taste. Also called pilsener or pilsner it owes its name to the Czech city of Pilsen where this type of beer was brewed for the first time in the 19th century. Compared with lagers the pils beers are usually more hopped, giving them extra bitterness and freshness. Bottom-fermented Belgian beers are quite always of this type.
This type of beer is often used as thirst quencher because of its fresh hoppyness and low alcohol. It uses to be drunk as cold as possible and Belgians like it more once on tap than coming from a bottle.
In Flanders we ask for a ‘pintje’ to order a fresh glass of pils.