When we asked our Antwerpian informers to give us a good spot to have a drink, they immediately mentioned Dogma. It is located just a couple of steps from the cathedral, in a neighborhood over-flowing with independent and sophisticated boutiques. You notice it straight away thanks to the scent of orange peels and freshly squeezed lemon juice spilling out onto the street and the old barrels used as ashtrays. Inside, the retro vibe is intermingled with a tropical air, and wood combined with brick.
At the counter, the welcoming bartenders all wear suspenders, the water is seasoned with cucumber, and the owner Didier Van den Broeck’s recipe book is written by hand and accompanied by drawings.
Each enigmatic name intrigues you, from the “Under a tree in Central Park” to the “When the bartender has the night off ”.
Didier, the self- taught mixologist, is extremely generous, and likes to imagine the perfect drink for each and every customer. Long, on the rocks, sour, smooth, classic, spicy, the options are endless and the experiences multiple. The varieties of gin, whisky and absinth are innumerable, while wine, as the wooden sign indicates, is prohibited. Indeed, it would be a shame to miss out on Didier’s perfectly balanced, barely sweet and refreshing concoctions, made with just enough honey, or cloves, cinnamon, cedar and house made syrup. The Rosso Cherry and the Rye Whisky alone are enough to make you stay for hours...