Dispatches from the Field:
Family and Friends log 166
Beer Garden Visits and Counting
Kevin Ostroske in the field, at Concordia
on a mission to visit every beer garden and beer hall in the
4th and 5th editions of the BDG2M.
Below, with family and friends at Insel Mühle
'More than a book, it was our lifestyle. . . '
--One Team Member's Adventure, and Journey, with
Letter to Mr. Larry
Beer Drinkerís Guide to Munich
It has been a long, fun and fulfilling journey, one that began over five
years ago in Anaheim, California. While residing there, my wife received
word that her company would be relocating her and our family to Munich,
Germany in a matter of months. Prior to our move, we bought a number of
research books (mostly to help with the language in which we had zero
training). As a gift, her father gave us the 4th edition of the Beer Drinkerís
Guide to Munich.
Little did we know, while preparing for our move, how valuable the BDG2M
would become. From the moment we arrived in Munich, the BDG2M (along with
a map of the city) was our guide. It gave us specific destinations to
go (with concise instructions on how to get there). Plus, as we ventured
out into our new and strange environment, the book helped us explore further
areas, locations and sites in and around the city.
As our time in Munich marched on, the many visitors we had benefited from
our beer garden knowledge. We purchased the 5th edition and the BDG2M
slowly became a source of a friendly competition. The ladies and gentlemen
of our circle willingly participated in our quest to visit ALL the locations
in the 4th and 5th editions, combined (more than 70 overall, but 57 primary
listings). Last weekend, during Munichís 849th birthday, June 16, 2007,
we completed our mission. After residing in Munich for 4 years and 9 months,
all of the 57 primary beer gardens in both the 4th and 5th editions have
been successfully visited (with the minimum requirement of having at least
one beer at each place).
Sure we visited certain beer gardens more frequently than others and together
with our guests we tallied some 166 beer gardens (our 57, 42 for our in-laws,
41 for Dave Bresnahan, BDG2M Research Team member and 26 for my brother-in-law
and his wife). In between going to beer gardens and seeing the sights
along the way, we attended the many festivals listed in your book (Dults,
Oktoberfests and Frühlingsfests and even Stadtgeburtstags). We were
quickly enveloped in the beer garden culture and enjoyed the Bavarian
custom of combining beer, food, family and friends with fresh air.
The outdoors also gave a smoke-free environment where our child could
play and meet other children. (Not to mention that our basic restaurant
and ordering skills became the cornerstone of leraning the German language.)
I am writing now, on the cusp of our repatriation to the States, to say
a heartfelt thank you. The BDGM was a valued and fun book. It not only
showed us great places to imbibe in our adopted city of almost five years,
but also gave us many lifelong memories for us and our family and friends.
Some even purchased t-shirts or became Research Team members themselves.
But none carry the card or wear the apparel more proudly than I do knowing
that I have accomplished something that others only dream.
Thank you again for your publication about the beer gardens in Munich.
It had become more than just a book to us, it was our lifestyle. To you,
we raise our glass and say Prosit!!
Research Team Member No. 000187