Reviews, News and Views from the Field Research Team
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Hawaii Meeting - Research Site: Elks Club, Waikiki

Beer Drinker's Guide Research Team Members gathered in Honolulu, Hawaii to talk about Munich and log a little practice. From left: Steve Dulieu, Larry Hawthorne, Eliska Jezek, Anne Dulieu - Oct. 2001)

Field Report from Glenn Gearhard - May 2002 visit to Munich.
A cool weekend weather-wise in Munich, but we enjoyed our visit to several of the local beer gardens. Chinesischer Turm was serving H-B beer though instead of the advertised Lowenbrau from my 4th edition of the BDG2M. The Prosit!, buy one get one free offer, is the best deal around. My travel partner was skeptical that we would get "free beer" by using the coupons in my Beer Drinker's Guide, but after success at WaWi and Chinesischer Turm, by the time we got to Seehaus, he said, "break out the book". The map to WaWi doesn't show the streets in between the train station and Georg-Kalb, which caused a little confusion on our trek. I'm glad we pressed forward though, and enjoyed some Sunday noontime jazz by an American group. Our trip included stops at Augustiner Keller, Hofbräuhaus, Spring Festival at the Wiesen, WaWi, Chinesischer Turm, Seehaus, and Augustiner Großgaststätte. This is my second trip to Munich using the Beer Drinker's Guide, and it is a great resource. The train guide alone is worth the price of the book. Three free beers during this trip also paid for the book. If you are going to Munich and you want to drink beer, then you need this book.

Ayinger - September 2001: Situated opposite the Hofbräuhaus, this modern Euro-beer cafe is a good alternative to the more lively venues in Munich. Quality food and beer from Ayingerbrau are available. On our visit an unfiltered kellerbier was on tap, as was a dark Oktoberfest beer. Food is Bavarian, but a little lighter than in some places. All in all,a place to recharge the batteries before heading out for another litre or two!
3 1/2 beers
Bob Nettles

(Field Research Leader Note: Ayinger is literally at the front door of HB and used to be Platzl am Platzl until it succumbed to Planet Hollywood several years ago. With the diminishing fortunes of the famous chain, the place is at least back in the hands of people who are more interested in serving beer than pop (culture).)

Starkbierfest 2001
(Note: The fire that has closed Paulaner Keller for an extended period forced this year's Starkbierfest out of the beerhall and into an Oktoberfest-style fest tent on Mariahilfplatz (home of the Auer Dults). As reported by one of our research members, the new, temporary venue is not without its advantages.)

(From a visit on 18 and 19 March, 2001)
Like a little Oktoberfest with stronger beer, the Starkbierfest was held the past two years in a tent on Mariahilfplatz. It was also infinitely easier to get a seat here than it will be at the Wies'n six months later. An impressive array of eats, including many types of sausage, were available. We went later in the evening; admission was only DM 1. (Rumor was it was DM 13.50 earlier in the day, but that included a Maß, which went for DM 12.50.) It will be a shame if next year's fest has to move back indoors -- the tent setting really added to the festive atmosphere. Hats off to Peter Pongratz and his great team!
4 ½ beers.
John Viggiano

Photo of Paulaner tent below thanks to Sgt. First Class Steve Landrum (inset), stationed in Germany.

Chinesischer Turm - 15 April 2000
First spring weather made for an excellent day in the beer garden. Still alot of folks bundled up because of the chill. I like the newly renovated restaurant. Seems they've improved on the menu as well. Free beer coupons really make this place a find. 5 beers.
Walt Chisholmer

Forschungs Braurerei - September 1997
A fun little independent brewery in the southern suburbs. Easy to get to by S-Bahn and worth the trip. The name literally means Research Brewery and they do have some unique offerings. Definitely on my short list. 4 ½ beers.
Jay "Dr. Beer" Hersh

Waldwirstschaft Großhesselohe - Spring 1997
I visited in the early spring and dissapointingly the beer garden was closed (but not a surprise). Fortunately the restaurant was open. It's a cozy place with tasty food and a friendly atmosphere. 4 ½ beers.
Jay "Dr. Beer" Hersh

(Paul Pizzeck's Report from an April 28 - May 1, 2001 "Maß Fest" )
We visited 16 of the 4-beer or better recommendations in the BDG2M (4th ed). Paulaner Keller was open but for limited hours only (6 a.m. to 6 p.m.) I assume to cater to the workers at the brewery across the street. The Beer Hall had not yet reopened after a fire in 2000. Kraillinger Brauerei was a welcome addition to the BDG2M but can be a little hard to get to. We visited on what must have been a holiday so the buses were not running (or running much less frequently). Note: Hirschau in the Englischer Garten has reopened and was quite busy. It did not appear to be renovated as the signs posted on the building had promised in August of 2000 but was still a pleasant experience. The food was good (especially the ribs).

Reviews by Paul Ruschmann (visits made April 28-May 1, 2001 )

Kloster Andechs: Worth the time and trouble getting out here. At 11:30 on a Sunday morning, it was already crowded. The beer is heaven in a krug, and cheap (less than DM10 a liter); Dunkel Export, Spezial Hell, and Weissbier on tap. Bring your appetite: the portions are enormous (pig's knuckles the size of boxing gloves) and the food selection is wide. On your way out, buy a four- or eight-pack of bottles to take home. 4 ½ beers.

Hofbrau Keller: Come here if you want to get away from tourists and noise. The beer hall is immaculately clean. The color scheme is a subdued green and white, and the decor includes modern art. There's a kiddie area and even a no-smoking room. The Saturday crowd consisted mostly of couples and families, many here for dinner. Music (oompah and rock) is confined to the party room upstairs. 3 ½ beers.

Research Team Member Dave Ringler (L) and Wolfgang Schad, Prinzregenten Stammtisch and designated beer drinker extraordinaire on the 3rd, 4th and 5th edition covers of the BDG2M, quaff a couple of weizen beers at Viktualienmarkt.

Waldwirtschaft Großhesselohe: Thousands were out on a warm holiday afternoon of Dixieland jazz, sunshine (I saw some nasty sunburns), and, of course, food and beer. For those who hadn't brought their own picnics, there was grilled chickens and sausage; the grounds smelled like a Big Ten tailgate party. Späten-Bräu Maibock was on tap: strong and full-bodied; it got chewier and maltier as it warmed. 5 beers.

Isar Bräu: A gem of a brewpub (near Wa-Wi). The whole remodeling job was wonderfully done, with copper brewing kettles right in the middle of the bar-restaurant area. There's outside seating, including a small beer garden. Isartalerstationsweizen, the house specialty, is wonderful: amber and hazy, with a lemony taste. Cheap, too. Locals love it; I saw a parade of people arriving with empty growlers to refill.
4 beers.

Frühlingsfest: More like the boardwalk at Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey--but with more baby strollers--than Oktoberfest. Still, you can get a taste of Oktoberfest hijinks in the Augustiner and Hacker-Schorr tents. Beer by the Maß, a full line of Bavarian comfort food, and a band playing a mix of beer hall favorites and American rock numbers. Singing is encouraged, dancing on tables tolerated. The crowd is 99% local. 3 beers.

Report from Oktoberfest - Augustiner Tent - 16 Sept 2000
Yes,it only happens once a year,but if you get to the "Big Party", you must get into the Augustiner Zelt.NO American R&R, rather primarily the true Bavarian experience.Also,in my humble opinion there is NO other beer in Augustiner's league.I would try to tell you about the experience, but unless you are sitting there, there really is no way to explain "Gemutlichkeit".
Marty Stone

Nurnberger Bratwurst Glockl
August 28, 2000
Centrally located, this establishment offers sausages (the house specialty is the little Nürnberger style, like a breakfast link) roasted over a traditional wood fire. You also get your choice of potato salad, sauerkraut, or horseradish. Prices start at DM 10 for 6 Nürnberger and a side. At 3:30 one afternoon, a raucous Stammtish was already in full swing. This seemed to get our Kellnerin a little rattled, and our orders got mixed up. We were sharing, anyway, so no problem this time. Augustiner Edelstoff is available in sizes down to a viertl (about eight ounces) and up to a Maß, and halfs of Tücher Weizen, from Franconia, are also available. 3 ½ beers.
John Viggiano

August 28, 2000

I had stayed away from this one until my most recent trip. "In every tour book there is on Munich, must be for tourists; all dishes under DM 12, how good could it be?" was my reasoning. Well, the location (just left of the Neues Rathaus, across Weinstrasse) can't be beat, and the selection of Hacker-Pschorr beers is impressive. They had my favorite from that brewery, the Dunkler Bock, and the quality of the food and service, while not the acme of what Munich has to offer, left me feeling we got more than our money's worth. Plus, you have to visit Munich's oldest beer hall (at the site of the even older constabulatory) at least once! 2 ½ beers.
John Viggiano

Andechser am Dom & Nurnberger Bratwurst Glockl
June 2000
Cheek by jowl under the Cathedral ("Dom") walls, these two fine bars are must-do's in the centre. A-a-D has the range of beers from the brothers at the Andechs monastery to the SW of Munich; N-B-G-a-D has Augustiner, & Tucher Weiss. The latter was receiving an external face lift in June. The interior is superb: Beer from wooden casks, open fire; dating from 1893. Both worth a similar rating..... 4 ½ beers.
Simon Yates ("Beerwolf")