In 1981 the city of Bruges revealed a work of art to honor the paitron saint of the berwers. The mayor had a special assignement for brewer Henri Maes IV and his daughter Véronique. He asked them to brew a new beer to serve at the inauguration of the statue of Saint Arnold.
The beer was highly appreciated and soon became an established product in the brewery. The name Straffe Hendrik translates as Strong Henri and was chosen because of the numerous strong Hendris in the family.
In the late 1980s the brand was acquired by another brewery, but in 2008 Xavier Vanneste was able to bring the lost son back home. Today Straffe Hendrik is the last authentic tiple beer brewed in the city of Bruges.