Belgian Embassy Chef Talks Food, Beer at Delirium

Delirium Café welcomed a special guest today—a man who knows a thing or two about Belgian food and drink.

Dries Molken, the chef at the Embassy of Belgium in Washington, DC, stopped by Delirium Café in downtown Leesburg to sample some of the eatery’s beer and cuisine that pays tribute to his home country.

The Leesburg location is the only Delirium Café in the U.S. The original Delirium Café opened in Brussels, Belgium, is known for its world record-breaking beer list, standing at more than 3,000.

The chef’s visit to Leesburg came about after Leesburg’s Delirium Café team attended a Belgium National Day celebration at the Embassy of Belgium on Friday. Eric Burns, Delirium’s sales and marketing manager, got to talking with Molken and suggested he stop by Leesburg to taste and see all the good beer and food that the downtown area has to offer.

Molken said stopping in Delirium Café in Leesburg provided him with a little taste of home. “It’s great to be able to explore the Belgian food and beer in a small U.S. town,” he added.

Burns told Molken the bar and restaurant has been getting great feedback on its menu, especially the mussels. The menu includes four different variations: chorizo and fennel, Provençal, beer and butter, and BLT.

“We’ve had people who just got back from Belgium say our mussels taste very similar to those in Belgium,” Burns said.

Molken spotted one of his go-to winter meals on Delirium’s menu: beef stew made with beer. “That is my always my favorite,” he said.

As he walked Molken through the menu, Burns let the chef in on a little secret: Kitchen Manager Kaelin Allred and his team of cooks are perfecting their fries. They want to earn the badge Favorite Fries in Loudoun Now’s readers’ poll. “That’s the goal,” Burns added.

Their well on their way. Delirium’s take on fries includes a variation with crystallized red wine vinegar and crispy shallots, one with parmesan truffle, and another served as traditional poutine with brown gravy and farmer’s cheese.

Molken got a chance to wash his lunch down with not just Belgian beer, but beer brewed right in Loudoun County. After hanging out in Delirium’s kitchen, the team took the chef to a few of their favorite local breweries.

dnadler@loudounnow.com
twitter.com/danielle_nadler

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