The grill’s smoking and the wind in the outdoor spot you’ve camped yourself at for two hours now is wafting the smells of grilling meat. The staff brings out a round of brews the establishment produces. You look around the wooden bench and the flushed happy faces fill you with mirth. You lift your mug for a toast and let the beer slip into your throat, tasting of hops or barley and that usual tang of fermented alcohol. Good times indeed.
Though the beer garden is a German invention, there are already incarnations of these kinds of establishments all over the world. Here are some of the beer gardens worth lugging some mugs around in.
The Flask Tavern
For a serious old world tavern experience, head out to London and seek the Flask Tavern. The tavern had once been a stable. Apart from this, there is also an interesting story of the establishment being haunted by a lovelorn barmaid. People can drink outside in the garden or go inside when the chills descend. During summer, the staff breaks the grill open and serves burgers and steaks. In other seasons you can enjoy your Weston with some great fish and a serving of chips.
Wudaokou Beer Garden
If you’re in Beijing, try Wudaokou Beer Garden for some serious options and merrymaking. Wudaokou Beer Garden ‘s setup involves a large central tent which is surrounded by different food vendors. If you’re hankering for cost-effective and varied forms of chow, you’re in the right place. The food stalls offer traditional Chinese favorites like dumpling to the cuisine of its Asian neighbors like Korean barbecue and even western fare like hotdogs. Enjoy the Tsingtao and Yangjing brands and drink into the bustle of a happy night.
Cafe Sound Garden
Amsterdam has its own answer to the beer garden question in the Cafe Sound Garden. This beer garden mixes urban grit with a little playfulness as bands play alternative rock while patrons drink their beer while boats buoy nearby. This beer garden relies on its neighbor, a Turkish eatery which provides an awesome lamb kebab to go along with your Poperings Hommelbier or your Schneider Weizen.
For some exotic and fresh fare while downing some suds in Vietnam, Luong Son is the right place. It’s basically a grill your own meal barbecue place which can perch hundreds. People guarantee that the customer service is good even at peak hours. For some chow, try their scorpions, or their garlic beef. Live shrimps can also be had for the taking. When the meal’s done drink with Saigon beer.
Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden
If you’re around the Queens area in New York, try going to the Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden. This particular place is a favorite haunt of immigrants and hipsters. Like other beer gardens, this one is protected by the shade of trees. The generous amounts of long tables ensure that no one group is without its place. For food, one can expect Eastern European dishes like pierogi and kielbasa. Get some Staropramen and Hoegaarden for $15 buck pitchers.
Belgium has its own old beer garden in Café Vlissinghe. The establishment has been serving the locals of Bruges since 1515. Nestled by the St.Anna neighborhood and covered by a walled garden, patrons can drink while playing boccie, an outdoor type of bowling game. During the rains, people move the drinking inwards where they can get some warmth from the fireplace. Unlike the menu in Hofbräuhaus, Café Vlissinghe offers a diverse range of food from goat cheese wrapped with bacon to mac and cheese .The garden has 20 kinds of Belgian brews worth scoping out.
Augustiner Bräu Kloster Mülln
You can basically get lost finding a seat here at Augustiner Bräu Kloster Mülln as they have 1,500 places to settle yourself. This particular beer garden has been serving the locals of Salzburg since the 17thcentury. Asides from the seats, they also have a wide variety of local food offered at the stalls of delicatessen. After getting your chow, sit down and drink one of the nine kinds of Augustiner beer.
Hofbräuhaus is a beer garden which has been operating in Munich since 1589. This establishment is perhaps the quintessential German beer garden as it still continues to embrace tradition. The staff are still wearing those trademark Bavarian clothes. Like most old beer gardens, this one is surrounded by a copse of chestnut trees which shelter beer drinkers from the sun. The chow is outstanding. Expect a lot of pork from the Hofbräuhaus which will come to you in the forms of sausages. There are also side dishes of pretzel and salad. Again, when you’re there go for their brews which come in white, light and dark flavors. The staff will pinch some lemons onto your beer should you request it.
Letna Beer Garden
The beautiful city of Prague is not beer garden-less of course. This beer garden is right smack at Latenske park which offers views of Prague’s Old City as well as the slow flowing Vltava river. For their bar chow, feast on pizza like the quattro stagioni. The beer of choice? Czech of course. Order some Gambrinus and drink from a plastic cup
Belgian Beer Café Bluestone
There’s a little of Belgium that can be found in Melbourne and it happens to be in the form of a beer garden. Enter Belgian Beer Café Bluestone replete with picnic tables sheltered by umbrellas. The patrons are mostly brew lovers and yuppies out for some drinks. The eats are varied and seasonal: grilled stuff like sausages and chicken during the summer, fries and mussels on others. Enjoy some Stella Artois, Leffe Blonde and Leffe Brune poured masterly by the staff to achieve great taste and foam formation.
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