Inside the Hofbrauhaus Munich
Atmosphere: Get drunk to enjoy
Chances of practising your German with the locals: Good
Beer: Have a guess – watch out only maß Helles.
Gin and Tonic: No chance
The Hofbrauhaus Munich is one of the most famous landmarks and destinations of the city. Tourists flock there, but like any truly decent attraction, the Hofbrauhaus still attracts locals and even regulars. As the first and most sumptuous of all the beer halls, it has a special place in the traditional life of the city. Unlike almost all other beer halls, it is a place where you can guarantee to hear traditional Bavarian music every single night and even on a Monday it has life.
The Hofbrauhaus Munich
Beer halls are loud echoy places where Bavairans get together in old fashioned costumes to get too drunk and sing songs. They are not places you want to go for a quiet drink. By this reckoning, the Hofbrauhaus Munich is the best among them. It has the deepest history, the tourists ensure it is always a lively place where you can be sure to make friends, the interior is more authentic and pleasant than most.
There is actually much more to the Hofbrauhaus than just the beer hall on the bottom floor. It is a multi-story beer hall with lots of different sections. One floor up is a quiet and respectable Bavarian restaurant, up top is a huge barrel-ceilinged beer hall with long tables and a stage for the band. When its not hired out for events, this is also open to the public and is a quieter and in some ways more impressive Hofbrauhaus than the main hall on the ground floor.
The beer is, of course, Hofbrau – one of Munich’s better beers. Unfortunately in the main hall they only sell this in – one litre – maß glasses. If you’re not used to this, it could get you drunk very quickly. If you’re not willing to commit to a drunken evening, then you can buy a Weissbeer by the ½ litre.
If you want decent food in the Hofbrauhaus, you need to head upstairs. The fare on the bottom floor is low grade beer hall stuff, with dry half chickens and tourist-style chip based dinners. Best to either wait till you’re drunk before ordering, or eat before you go.