Podcast Episode 228: Paula Yunes and Valéry De Breucker of Brasserie Atrium Are Shaking Things Up in the Famenne

This wife-and-husband brewing team in Wallonia blend their Belgian and Brazilian roots with a deep love of tradition and a spark of contemporary creativity.

Jamie Bogner , Joe Stange Mar 4, 2022 - 6 min read

Podcast Episode 228: Paula Yunes and Valéry De Breucker of Brasserie Atrium Are Shaking Things Up in the Famenne Primary Image

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She’s a native Brazilian, beer sommelier, and former reality TV host. He’s a Brussels native who has worked in every aspect of the industry, including the brewhouse at Fantôme. Together, Paula Yunes and husband Valéry De Breucker launched a brewery in Belgium’s Luxembourg province. Now, Brasserie Atrium is turning heads with fresh takes on saison and other classics while turning up the heat with trendier styles such as hazy IPA and barrel-aged stout.

It’s no small task to launch a new brewery in Belgium and gain acceptance for it there. Belgian beer lovers have their established brands, and their brewing community is relatively slow to change. However, the small town of Marche-en-Famenne, near Rochefort, was the right place for them to launch—the street they’re on is Rue de Brasseurs (Brewer’s Street), after all. And grabbing a European Beer Star gold medal for their saison, The One, is the kind of thing that tends to get people’s attention.

In this episode, Yunes and De Bruecker discuss:

  • building a more expansive idea of beer in a conservative market
  • their cooperative process of developing recipes together
  • creating a local, small-town brewery with cosmopolitan influences
  • the business-driven need to break from tradition
  • brewing a noteworthy, award-winning saison in a country known for them
  • using local water and yeast with glucoamylase enzyme toward the end of fermentation, to get their saison to full dryness
  • brewing hazy IPA with the Belgian twist of house abbey yeast
  • using high mash temperatures along with wheat and oats to build body
  • the challenge of using Brazilian woods such as amburana and cumaru for barrel-aging
  • breaking down the gender barrier in Belgian brewing

And more.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Jamie Bogner is the Cofounder and Editorial Director of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®. Email him at [email protected].