Monday, November 7, 2011

Augustiner Beer...Give it a try!

Bierhalle with the Frauenkirch in the back
Augustiner Beer

I couldn’t help myself.  I had fallen prey to the golden suds which evidently summoned for my return to Munich.   After a 2 year absence, I found myself alone at the famous Augustiner Bierhalle just a stone’s throw away from the Frauenkirche Church.  

It was no accident, I was in the market to consume (in my opinion) the best beer created by the Germans.   The one particular beer I was looking for is called, Marzen (March) which contains the alcohol strength of 6% and is made especially for Oktoberfest.  According to many people in Munich, Marzen is by far the best beer one can drink during the 2 weeks of Oktoberfest.  However, because I arrived in Munich exactly 2 weeks after the massive party, I knew that finding this beer would be next to impossible.

Trying hard to contain my child-like emotions, I waited patiently for my server.  My lips were parched from de-hydration; a condition which only strikes when my breakfast contains only a strong espresso in the morning (something which is happening a little too often on this trip). To pass the time I began to munch on the very expensive pretzels which sat at the middle of the table. 

“Hallo!” Greeted the waiter.
“Hallo!  Uh…Oktoberfest Beer?”  I asked with a slight look of concern on my face.
“Yes, we still have it.”

A sigh of relief fell upon face followed by a huge bright smile. 

The Monks created Augustiner during the early 1300’s and according to the staff the very first beer was brewed at this particular spot.   The company has since moved their factory to the outskirts of Munich they but have managed to keep the Halle as watering hole/restaurant for Tourists and locals.  

Moments later, there stood the holy grail of all beers.  I hovered over the thick layer foam just inches from my salivating lips as I examined the tiny streams of bubbles running up to the surface.

Carefully, I lifted my 1 liter mug and took my very first swig.

It was heaven on earth all over again.

The beer with its’ smooth body and shimmering golden texture was like swallowing liquefied candy.  

Exactly how I remembered it!

If gold had a taste, it would taste like Marzen.

I nursed my beer to savor every potent drop, while sitting upon the long, harden wooden benches.  The comfort level of the benches was akin to those found at a church as my bony behind began to ache.  I clasped my stein with two hands and for a brief moment, I felt as though I was saying a prayer to the Monks responsible for this sweet liquid.  Out of sheer curiosity, I searched for the padded kneeler below the table.  Jokingly, I thought, perhaps the proper way to consume Augustiner is upon your knees; unlike within the tents of Oktoberfest the beer, is to be consumed while standing upon the benches, happily singing with your mates while participating in the drunken debauchery.

Not here.  

At the Bier Halle, you are to sit and chat loudly drinking and/or eating traditional German food consisting of mashed potatoes, pork and pretzels.

As the minutes past, my speed of consumption began to increase.  I realized that I was down to half a mug after sitting at the table for 7 minutes. I placed my mug down to pause for a brief moment.   My mind began to feel slightly un-balanced as the 6% welcomed me back to Munich.  I reciprocated with a sly grin while suspended with a sensation of euphoric bliss.  But, I began to think about my friends back home; wishing for them to accompany me for a Masse.   At that precise moment, I panned over to the empty table to the right of me.  3 years ago at that very table, I was coerced by an elderly gentleman to try snuff for the first time.  Blame it on the alcohol.  See video.

Less than 3 minutes later, I completed my liter of beer in what seemed to be a personal record.  I am not known to be a drinker, however the flavor of this beer is so brilliant and so incredibly addicting it is VERY hard to not consume at a fast pace.  While I could’ve ordered another, I just sat satisfied, knowing that I will drink another liter…er tomorrow.  

Should you find yourself participating at Oktoberfest or just visiting Munich, be sure to give this beer and/or any of their other products a try.

Augustiner Restaurant und Bierhalle 
Neuhauserstr. 27 - 80331
Tel. 089 - 23 183-257  
Fax 089 - 260 53 79

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