Bar Ran Bruges – Home of great drinks, fine spirits & disco tunes

Bar Ran Bruges – Home of great drinks, fine spirits & disco tunes

To kick-off the new year I decided to spend my winter vacation in Belgium to enjoy some medieval atmosphere and delicious drinks. Bruges – a heavyweight sightseeing spot – was my first stop. Within a radius of 400 metres you’ll find a picturesque old town with canals, historical buildings and many cultural sights. In 2000 Brügge in German, Brugge (Broo-ghah) in Dutch and Bruges (Broozh) in French and English was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It feels like being in a huge outdoor museum and I loved strolling through its narrow streets. Even though Belgium is known as the beer country par excellence, it has a small but fine selection of cocktail bars. Join me on my adventure at Bar Ran.

In 2017, I met Ran Van Ongevalle when he won the Bacardi Legacy Global Competition with his drink Clarita: A combination of Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Años Rum, Amontillado Sherry, Crème de Cacao, Absinthe, saline solution and a few drops of olive oil. The trophy is on the shelf and the drink is on the menu. And of course, I tried it again. I love sherry in drinks and this harmonious mix is a perfect match and still a winning combination. After Ran won the trophy he and his wife Janah Van Cleven travelled the world together. They then mixed their impressions, feelings and skills together and opened their own bar in the heart of Bruges.

Bar Ran reflects impressions brought from many corners of the world in its drinks and music. Stitched together with warm hospitality and a pleasant laissez-faire where everyone’s welcome.

The bar has an international flair and is elegant yet cosy. You’ll find wooden shelves, tiles that exude a warm mediterranean feeling, brass details, velvet seats and a wall cabinet stocked with a vast selection of vintage spirits. The venue itself isn’t so big – I estimate that about 25 guests can fit in here (I forgot to ask).

What awaits you is loving energy, smiling bartenders and cocktails high in flavour and balance.

When it comes to drinks, Bar Ran ticks all my boxes. High ester rum, agave and special flavour combinations. The menu lists an extra section of Daiquiris in different varieties. Everything is dangerously delicious. My favourite was the Bar Ran Funky Juice Daiquiri. Funky Juice is Ran’s own bottled high ester pot still rum from Jamaica (Worthy Park, unaged bottled at 63% with an ester count of 393.11g/HLPA, 132 bottles).

Discover a world of dangerously delicious Daiquiris.

Beside the vintage cocktails you can also find some tasty bar bites complementing the drinks. The King Kong Milk Punch impressed me with its complexity and deep flavour. Worthy Park 109 is infused with coffee beans from Nicaragua from the praised micro roastery Cafuné Coffee Roasters just around the corner. Then, the concoction is simply blended with passion fruit puree, orgeat & lime before being transferred to whole milk for about 8 hours.

For me, bar visits are like tiny love stories. In some bars you just walk in and fall in love. And one thing must also be said, this was not a one night stand. Couldn’t resist the ice cold Daiquiris.


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