Franconia Beer Message Board
|Unthreaded View (Date Order)||Calendar of Bamberg Visits|
|View the archive back to day 1 of the board.||How to get there Wiki|
|A RSS feed of the last 20 posts||Search|
Brauerei Kundmuller in Weiher
Oct 18 & 19
NICE PLACE !
Does anyone know of a good app (if one exists!) for buses in the Bamberg area? I have a good app for trains but would like one for local buses if possible.
Download the VGN (Verkehrsverbund Großraum Nürnberg) App.
...I heard from very reliable sources. This sums up where Mahrs has gone these past 5 or so years. They also have these stupid 0,3l cans of U for 98c which is the same at a 0,5 bottle. Even if the beer was good you're taking people for a ride.
Stefan Michel is destroying the place.
From what you say here and in other previous posts, it seems Herr Michel is alienating local customers. Do you see any evidence that the changes to the brewery tap and the products is causing a financial loss to the company? Or does "destroying the place" just refer to the ambience of the tap?
To be honest, I'm not sure if I would go as far as to say his actions are "destroying the place". the pub is still a great place, it's just the beer is inconsisent and often poor. It is even more noteworthy because of how good both the Helles and the U were. Even if the barrels were real, if the beer is poor it won't taste any better.
I know that some of the locals have moved across to Keesmann, but the place remains popular. The anstich is very popular among students and being a greedy so and so he just wants to make a quick buck out of it. He'll say that have live bands playing. They have the U in little 0,33 bottles and they cost pretty much the same as the bottles of 0,5 - riddle me that one. But people still buy them, which probably says as much about their guilability to marketing gimmickry than anything else.
I have no eveidence as to the success of the company financially but I would be surprised if it isn't doing very well, Herr Michel is no fool.
Thanks for the clarification. It sounds to me like the biggest problem is beer inconsistency and the discontinuation of the Bayischer anstich "U" they used to tap every day. Looking on their website, the actual drinking areas look the same as I remember. You could make an argument that being "very popular among students" is a good thing. Better to introduce them to Franken beer rather than drinking Desperados and mixed concoctions. People pay what they can afford, but I guess if other brewery taps and bars see Mahr's getting away with charging very high prices then they will be encouraged to raise theirs.
The last time I was there was before Stefan took over. It was March and the kachelofen was heating up the tap room nicely. The keg Helles was good and then they tapped the "U" and it was excellent, one of the beery highlights of my trip. (I was joined at my table by two Japanese fellows. Got to talking to them and one turned out to be a brewer who had just got done working at Thornbridge in Derbyshire. We went across the street to Keesmann for a few and then took a cab to Spezial. They then headed off to the rail station and Laaber near Regensburg where they were going to visit weizen brewers Plank. But I digress...).
I was at the Plank brewery during the summer (it's not a weizen brewery, they are a normal brewery whose weizen is very good, but i digress).
Let me just clarify that "being popular amongst students" was more a comment directed at his raising of the prices with a crowd that, one could argue, won't be particularly offended, as they are coming to an event that is 'hip' and has other attractions such as live music. Herr Michel has tried to place the 'brand' in a much more 'cult' sphere. He tries to pretend he's a cool American-type craft beer brewer, and at least to less cynical people, it works, hence the 0,33cl bottles - that's just not Franconian. I'm only 35 myself, and I agree that it's good that they are drinking good beer, but I'm not sure how many of those return the next week for a beer without the crowds and music.
Even though I bang on relentlessly about my preference for beer from the barrel and though the U is much better suited to it with it's subtle flavours, I would still visit the place, as I do all the other Bamberg breweries. But I've had the U ocassionally from the barrel over the last few yesrs' at events etc and it's just not as good as it was. The Helles (which you would have had from the barrel, as there were no keg beers before Stefan took over) is also inconsistent at best and the pils... well, I tried it once and left half of it.
It is much lamented by some on this forum, and others shrug their shoulders and say they can't taste the difference. But at the end of the day, why would I not visit what was once my favourite Bamberg brewery that remains a beautiful pub?
I suppose it's a bit of a double whammy to suffer reduced quality and higher prices. In theory, the higher price should be being used to help maintain quality standards. The only logical conclusion being that Stefan is just being greedy as, I believe, you said Jason.
At the end of the day, when there are no shortage of places to drink in Bamberg, it will just make me less likely to bother going to Wunderberg.
I've written a lot about the downfall of Mahrs in the past, so not much point in repeating all the points. Jason has summarised it pretty well. It's just a shame because I have great memories of days and nights in Mahrs when it and U was my favourite place & beer in Bamberg. But, life moves on. Breweries and bars change, some for the better (not so many) and some for the worse (more). New places appear and take their place. I regret the (imho) demise of Mahrs and I'm not so fond of Keesmann to make to many visits to Wunderberg, which is part of the reason why I base myself outside Bamberg but close enough to make easy visits to the places that I like while visiting all the great rural breweries that offer such a great experience. And, now, there's Prague. But that's another thing!
I would guess Herr Michel would claim that he has to pay for bands at special events somehow, either through entrance fees or higher prices. The prices at the tap are normally €3.10 per seidla according to their website. He might also say that Bamberg is chock full of traditional breweries and bars appealing to an older clientele, and he is trying to provide something different for a younger audience. That doesn't excuse poor beer though.
Jason, you are right about Plank. I have been there too and have seen their "Wall of Fame" with all the awards for their wheat beers. They do have other beers. I tried their helles on tap and found it about as interesting as Carling or Bud. What did you think?
I enjoyed the Helles, but it's a style I really like and is very hard to brew well. I certainly wouldn't put it in the bracket of Carling or Bud...
I would also comment that their are many bars that cater for the younger crowd in Bamberg. But the breweries, yes, though the tap is still very traditional. I don't know. 3.10EUR is more than Schlenkerla, slap bang in the middle of the tourist centre, so that says it all.
It seems that it is now the norm to expect the clientele to stump up extra for their drinks etc to pay for the entertainment. It was mostly accepted by landlords that the entertainment was a cost to the business,the theory being that the extra customers this would draw in (and hopefully extra money they would spend) would cover the cost and increase takings.But, today is today, and all changes.
As to the Mahrs discussion, I have to admit that I really cant say that the beer has deterioated( as I dont recall well enough how it was before). but, has changed.It is more highly carbonated, and, seems imho to be served colder. A common problem can be that when a brewer brews the same beer day after day it is easy to become complacent and take readings and temperature settings etc for granted and become a bit lax. this can lead to subtle changes in the finished beer detectable by regular drinkers but not by the occasional imbiber.
It's a good point, deterioration vs change. As you say, the extra carbonation and colder temperature could be the only impact, the U having a had very subtle, fruity flavours that led to some likening it to a British bitter, which would be lost as a result of these changes. Though as said, i've had the U from barrels since the change in the tap and it still lacks something. The Helles as well, it was full of diacytel on one ocassion, though at the last try it was fine, if a little class-less.
These aren't empirical conculsions of course, just my opinion. I'll keep trying, if only in the hope that my memory of it's greatness will fade or i'll become less of a beer snob. It remains a classic pub, especially the front room. The prices/attitude to customers irks me though.
I used to consider one of my three favorite breweries in Bamberg along with Spezial and Schlenkerla. Now not so much. It was a mistake IMO to stop serving it from the barrel. I don't really understand what the business reason for that was but the fact is that serving that barrel in the front room and schwemme at 4pm every day was one of the things that made Mahrs special. It was a differentiator. As a business owner myself I believe that if you have something that makes you special/different/better than your competitors then don't get rid of it. Instead be proud of it and promote it and keep it as your tradition. Charge a little more for it if necessary (hard to do in Franconia I know). And all the while go ahead and do the other things you want to do (craft beer collabs with breweries like Sierra Nevada, expand your presence overseas, hob nob with the worlds craft beer celebrities, get your photo on the cover of Beer Advocate Magazine, etc.). Nothing wrong with all that but no need to ditch a long standing and very nice tradition in the process.
Otherwise the place is still worth visiting on each visit to Bamberg as the place is a beaut of a pub and the beer is still good. I still love drinking in that Schwemme on a cool/rainy day.
How wise my two drinking friends are! I can't one thing to disagree with. I hope that doesn't start worrying you.
I have now found this new bar/cafe that Frank mentioned - Das Landbierhaus, on Lange Strasse (near vom Fass, exact address TBC). Opening times: Mon-Sat 10-22 (So closed).
I cycled past last night after it had shut but could see through the window - it's very much a cafe cum bar with a wide selection of fairly interesting bottles (Buttner, Eichhorn, Hoenig etc) and a rotating draft beer (I presume from the barrel as i couldn't see any taps). The price for a draft seidla was 3,40EUR so it's high end but i'm not sure that'll bother any beer tourists.
I will update once i've been in.
Which breweries have stickers ? (Like almost all American micros.)
In support of my Rauch Mission, I'd like to know who else in the region has a Rauch am Fass, and if I can buy a bottle.
Other than: Schlenkerla, Spezial, Klosterbräu, Drei Kronen, Eichhorn.
WHölzlein Rauch, a pale lager with a touch of smoke. We have some bottles at the Café Abseits.
Weiherer Rauchbock, a collobaration brew with the brewery Bamberg in Brazil. brewed every in automn. Maybe some bottles available from 2018 at the brewery
Huppendorfer Grachäds, a seasonal beer available now at the brewery
Some smoke beers from Weyermann, p.e. Schlotfegerla
Brauhaus am Kreuzberg, sometimes available.
Hummel Merkendorf, Räucherla, very often on tap.
Wagner Kemmern has also Rauchbier on tap.
There are some more with only light smoke flavour, e.g. Hirschentrunk from Kraus in Hirschaid.
I made it to Hummel, had their Rauch, and bought a bottle.
It was getting towards evening, so I stopped at Wagner; they didn't have Rauch in the bottle, and I didn't have time to stay. The rain started; I was soaked by the time I got to Bamberg.
I stopped at Kraus, and had theirs. I think it was more than "lightly smoked". I loved it. I bought a bottle.
Thanks for the suggestions.
I don’t know any breweries that have stickers.
Staffelbergbräu Loffeld: Querkerla. Lovely Rauchbier. No stickers.
Hummel Jubileumsbier 1162 is also bottled. And Rittmayer likely should also have 1 or 2 different ones. (Rauchbier, maybe Smoky George?)
Forewarning on the Rittmayer Smokey George. It's brewed with peated malts and has quite a bit. Not your traditional Rauch. If you like scotch you will love it.
A weekend in Bamberg.
So ten of us started in Fässla at lunchtime on Friday. Various beers were enjoyed together with food. I reacquainted myself with the Lagerbier which was perfectly drinkable and a good way to start. I sent the group on to Keesmann and Mahrs. They couldn’t get near Keesmann for the Bockbieranstich, even though it was still early afternoon. They settled for Mahrs “U” in the Schwemm which they enjoyed.
Meanwhile, I found a seat at a table in Spezial where I chatted with some Germans who now live in Köln but were visiting family in Bamberg. The conversation was lubricated by one each of the Rauchbier and the “U”.
We met up for dinner at Café Abseits where I tried the Holzlein Rauchbier, another solid beer but the schnitzel was a bit dry/overcooked (sorry Gerhard).
On Saturday morning, a local guide (Johanna) took as all for a walking tour which took in some routes and points of interest that were new to me (I suppose you get stuck in following the same routes between the various points of the Altstadt). The tour was followed by Coffee and cake at Bassanese, just by the Altes Rathaus. I sent the group up to Greifenklau whilst I did a bit of tourist shopping before the first beer of the day called in Schlenkerla where the Märzen washed down a Bamberg Onion.
After lunch, I wandered around the market, window shopping the local produce while the group also visited Schlenkerla before meeting up with them for dinner at Klosterbräu where many Haxe were consumed in a large vaulted dining room accompanied by Rauchbier and Kellerbier.
Last stop of the day was Stöhrenkeller where a band was playing 60s pop and most of us drank Keesmann Herrenpils, served from a wooden barrel.
Sunday was more relaxed as most of us would be driving in the early hours after flying back to Stansted, but our lunch stop was in Sternla for Käsespätzle, more beer and a look through the windows at the back at the gleaming new brewery.
Hmmm, wooden barrel in Stòhrenkeller? Unless it was an extreme one off, the beers are served under pressure (the barrel is decorative).
Looked real, on a "stool" behind the bar but never saw it get changed and they were quite busy.
My wife and I have been in Bamberg for a few days, and some friends joined us yesterday.
Today, we walked up to Michealsburg, over to the DOM, and then to Greifenklau.
I know Greifenklau isn't normally too highly regarded, but the beer was OK, and the food was good.
We later went over to Mahrs, and in my opinion, the beer is not exceptional, as it used to be.
We wanted to go to Keesmann, but apparently they overexerted themselves yesterday, and it was closed this evening.
We then walked over to Zum Sternla, and while the beer wasn't the greatest, they had a five-piece band in the small taproom that was excellent. They played and played, and we drank and drank, and probably clapped a bit.
It was one of the most fun evenings I've had in my many trips to Deutschland.
Sounds great! Greifenklau is worth a visit, especially in summer when their terrace is a wonderful place to drink. Did they have the Rauch on?
Keesmann is always closed on a Saturday evening, I believe
John, I don't think they had a Rauch. (But a couple of yesterday's details are hazy...) They did have a Marzen, which was decent.
I'm kind of on a Rauch Mission on this trip. I'm trying to collect all available in bottles, take a photo, then drink them!
Schlenkerla: Excellent, better than I remember from a year and a half ago, when I thought it was dumbed down a little. Forgot to buy a bottle, but I'll get back there.
Spezial: Been too packed on three attempts to get in, but I did buy a couple bottles. One was consumed, and was excellent.
Klosterbräu: Very good, darker and a little sharper edge than Schlenkerla. Bottle procured.
Drei Kronen, Memmelsdorf: Good. Bottle procured.
Eichhorn, Dörfleins: Good, no bottles available.
Rauch Mission. What a great idea.
Have to say the Eichhorn Rauchbier (whilst I'm a regular and consider the brewery to be amongst the best) isn't really for me. It's too hoppy and pale and 'middle of the road', like quite a lot of the country rauchbiers. I think that's why I was so impressed with the Klosterbraeu effort as it packs quite a punch.
If you want to drink Doerfleins beer from the barrel tonight they have it in Strawenza (next to the Weissbierhaus). The unfiltered bock is now available at the brewery on tap.
The bock is 7.5%, which concerned me, as I was having a couple, and on my bike!
I may walk over to Strawenza tonight.
I walked over to Strawenza tonight, but the bier they had was the Eichhorn Kellerbier in a small keg. Next keg will be Huppendorfer.
They said something about a Bockfest in November, when they will have five bocks on tap at one time.
I always get a little suspicous about a place when their signs are made of masking tape!
(But it was fine.)
I didn’t mean they’d have the Rauchbier from the barrel - the Kellerbier is outstanding. It’s a great addition to the beer scene with regularly rotating, interesting beers from around the countryside.
According to frank Wetzel a place has opened on Lange Straße (near the grüner Markt) called Land... (something). They have a similar idea as Strawenza. It’s very small and I haven’t managed to find it yet but we’ll see.
Also, the music you encountered in sternla was a group of Austrians (friends of Frank). So you were lucky to experience it!
What's Strawenza, a bar? Anyone has an address? And Jason, please post once you find the Land... place. Sounds wonderful - as plentiful and great as Bamberg is - its bizarre there are so few of the countryside beers ever gracing the city. (besides the regular one-off spots). Wanderer in Nurnberg has a quite impressive yearly rotation ie.
Obere Königstr. 24
Dienstag bis Samstag ab 20 Uhr.
Its also open Monday's, or at least it was the Monday. Strawanza is a cozy little upmarket dive bar if that makes any sense. They have quite a few beers in the bottle and always have a barrel on the bar. If you check their Facebook page they will update often what beer they are tapping - be sure to get their soon after opening as it doesn't last long.
I will check out this new place tomorrow before or after Bockbieranstich at schlenkerla.
Do you like Strawenza? I haven't made it in yet. It seems a more acceptable form of hipsterisation than what certain other people (let's all drink IPAs and eat pulled pork!) are trying to do.
I like it, but pubs/bars aren't meant to tick everyone's boxes. Much talk on this forum and similar is about breweries and Kellers etc but Bamberg has a rich drinking culture that doesn't conform to your 'traditional' pubs. It has some of the best cocktail mixers in Germany (Ost bar, Schluckstück, Soda Bar, Dude, schwarzer schaff, Karwenzmann etc etc I like frequenting these places from time to time to get a different perspective, a younger crowd and a different atmosphere. And they all have good in some form.
Then there are the pubs like Rotenschild, Pelikan, Stohrenkeller, Galerie, Catweasels Castle etc. I don't go into every drinking hole on the Sandstraße but I don't begrudge others enjoying them - they add to the great atmosphere on Saturday nights, especially in summer. And they keep the riff raff out of the pubs I enjoy going to.
At the end of the day, if Strawanza didn't serve direct from the barrel I wouldn't go, I need a good reason to drink bottled beer outside of my house. It's small, has piped and live music and has a young crowd. If you're visiting you probably have bigger fish to fry, but it's always worth a look in to see what they are tapping.
Try it out and see for yourself.
I spent a nice part of an evening there earlier in the year, with Jason, Beth, Andy, Mark & Dorothy (hope that's correct, sitting waiting for one hour late Irish ferry at Holyhead ). Youngish crowd (they mainly are for me) but friendly & polite. Huppendorfer bier was good, as always. Recommended (certainly before 1 Bamberg brewery of note!).
I really enjoyed my visit to Strawanza. They had a barrel of Huppendorfer Maerzen on when I was there and that is one that I had not had before (I've had the Huppendorfer lager many times at Pelikan and Cafe Abseits). I will also always visit Schwarzer Schaff when I'm there as we've become friendly with the owner and he always has Drei Kronen from Schesslitz on tap (keg) and his cocktails are excellent. Depending where we are staying in town Catweasel is an oft visit as well as the Sonne Hell goes down nice for a nightcap or two. Then of course their is Rotenschild an it's barrels of Moenchsambacher .....
Much to do in Bamberg at night. I also find that the people running these aformentioned establishments can be quite a bit friendlier to their customers than the traditional places. So it's a nice diversion from the somtimes grumpy Bamberg service.
On the subject of service, we found excellent and friendly service in both Klosterbräu and Sternla at the weekend.
John, correct about Keesman, I understand that it's open 0900- 1500 on Saturdays.
Carl, that's a nice walk and one that I've done a number of times but, then, there can't be that many places in central Bamberg that I haven't walked at some time or other - it's a great place to walk around, I still get quite a thrill walking around the Dom area, especially in the twilight when you really get the impression of a medieval city - it's not all about beer, you know!.
Concur about Mahrs but I've said it often enough. Greifenklaus is pretty decent; the beers have much improved over the time since my first visit and you have those lovely views from the back. It's probably not visited enough because of the walk uphill but you can get a bus! Great to hear about Sternla - good motivation for another visit but probably not this year!
Greifenklau's beirgarten is apparently closed for the season.
After lunch, we asked our server if we could go out there (I've been there, but wanted to show my friends).
Apparently they had to tie up the guard dog, but they let us out there. They told us to stay off the sand (90% of the area) and on the stones. All the furniture was put away. The view was OK from the narrow walkway next to the building, but not as good from a table in the garden, as I've seen in the past!
Regarding the band at Zum Sternla: This is the first time I've seen a band that didn't want a break or want to quit playing! Five piece band, two fluglehorns, an accordion, a tuba, and a slightly amplified acoustic guitar; at least two of them were singing. A large fellow also came in occasionally with a mandolin. Last call was about 2245, we left about 2315, and the band was still playing!
This National Reunification Day holiday weekend messed up a lot of schedules in Bamberg.
First stop Fässla, still a great pub, moving on...
I'm getting the impression from their Facebook page that the Brauereigasthof zum Schwan in Ebensfeld has reopened. Their posting about food, opening hours, and serving beer from the barrel.
A Google translation of the statement on FB:
Democracy to Participate - Preparatory Meeting for a Green Open List for the Municipal Election 2020 in Ebensfeld
Next Wednesday, 25.09.19 at 19.30 h, there will be a first preparatory meeting for a Green Open List for the Municipal Election 2020 in Ebensfeld in the Gasthof Zum Schwan (Engelhardt). Anyone who wishes to sustainably advance Ebensfeld (even without a party) in the next 6 years is invited. The open list of the Greens offers citizens all Ebensfeld democracy to participate.
Might be good news for the environment but not for Ebensfelder drinkers, I think.
Another posting say that Ramona (I remember her!) and team have moved to Muehlbachklause, Lichtenfels.
Ha, Barry. Fear yoo not (or ye), ecofacism seems inevitable. And this small gathering looks like a good contribution for the sanity of Franconian mental health considering the insane nationalist-primitivist paranoia one can overhear in the stubens atm. But besides, heard very good things about Ebensfelder, especially their Kellerpils/Kellerbier(?) was highly recommended to me by a local coolship brewer we all know.
Can't say that I'm up to date with bar room meanderings in Franken - due to my poor German.
Ebensfelder Kellerbier is good but only available in the Keller during warmer months. I've no idea where you can drink it during winter.
Bamberg friends- Is there a business in town that offers Bavarian Antisch keg supplies? I need a brass Zapfhahn, wooden mallet, bungs, bung wrench and possibly an Antisch keg(10l). I posted this on Facebook and got one reply. Heinrich-leicht.de which could indeed be it. Anybody know of anything else?
I would say Heinrich Leicht has all you need.
If you get a brass zapfhahn, with a screw bung built in, you won't need a mallet or a bung (you'll need a bung for the top, plus a 'whistle' of course). They are quite expensive (80EUR a set), so if it's a one-off, a plastic tap is fine, top and bottom. Then you need a hammer, metal is fine. You don't need a bung wrench, they come out easily enough.
I don't know if they sell barrels, you'll have to make enquiries, but I'm sure they could help you if they don't.
Ah, I realise a bung wrench is for the actual bung, not the rubber things, but again Leicht should have them.
Thanks Jason. Just doing my due diligence. I appreciate the replies.
Good call, but these are serious money. High quality, but not somewhere to go if you just want to pick up a barrel to take some beer home. But of course an option, depending on your need.
That's the other one I found. I love Metzgerbrau so this is on my radar. Thank you for the post.
I'm a former brewer and now act as a brewing consultant. I'm helping several local breweries in Northern California brew Franconian inspired lagers. I want to be able to do Bavarian Antisch style keg tappings.
I have a $500US budget for two hopefully second hand kegs, a brass zapfhahn, a mallet, bungs, and a bung wrench. Any other misc items I can get are a bonus.
With that budget you likely can choose.
I'd consider getting the modern style Bavarian ANSTICH kegs that also have a coupling (mostly A- or European Sankey, but can easily be changed). You can slid a 'degasser' coupling over it.
-- Why? - Admittably I prefer the classical 'Pfeife' degasser as it's more precise, but the new style Anstichs ones come with a few upsides for occassional users.
A) You can clean them with regular keg-cleaners (instead of handling hot water/caustic in the open - if you have a cask cleaner, never mind).
B) You don't need to rebuy bungs (no bung wrench) and mallet - practical if you don't have an obvious source.
C) Modern Anstichs have self-closing mechanisms. So you can pull the Zapfhahn and it's near impossible to screw up when opening it. (but don't hammer it! - good chance the mechanism could break).
And visually they're indistinguisgable on first view (different designs available) Won't have all the romantic charme, but worth a consideration. A brewery using them is ie. Keesmann.
If you choose this route, get the plastic degasser (working much better than the metal ones).
And generally make sure to get a fitting Brass Zapfhahn for your Anstich. Multiple different designs exists (magnetic, different diameters, locking mechanism).
See here: https://schaefercontainers.com/productskeg/party-keg/
Second hand traditional Anstichs:
If you're having a friendly chat with Knoblach, you can likely pick up a few used traditional 15L Anstichs ones for VERY cheap.
And while I'm not advocating it - but knowing it's a common practise in the US - these can be force-carbed.
Thank you very much! I really appreciate your input. Very gracious of you! Prost!
I am a homebrewer in the US and after a lot of research I bought one of those Schaefer Bavarian Anstich kegs and I have been very happy with it. It is not exactly the same as the kegs used in Franconia and figuring out the Sanke D system has been a learning curve (but should be straightforward for profressional brewers), but once I figured out how to remove the spear for cleaning (which your brewers wouyldn't need to do) I have had great fun with it.
Here is a link to a picture of me serving a Kellerbier at the National Homebrewer's Conference in Providence, RI this year: https://imgur.com/1Bbd60h
4 days to go. Looking forward to my first beer, of this trip, in Bamberg, on Friday!
It’s Keesmann bockbieranstich this Friday... in case of interest I would advise getting there before 5pm and not after 6pm.
It's fully booked, already tried, might try to pop in but not much chance of a seat.
My normal Friday plan with a group is Fässla / Keesmann / Mahrs / Abseits.
Most of them have been before so they're unlikely to worry much if we have to vary the itinerary on the fly.
My guess is you haven't been to Keesmann bockbieranstich before... it's not really a seated event, more of a standing event in the brewery yard. You'd have to have booked weeks ago to get any seats. It will be rammed. from mid-late afternoon, especially as this Thursday is a bank holiday so many will have this Friday off.
No, not been before.
So that's more positive then, as long as we can get a beer, it's fine. Are they likely to be selling the regular beers or just pushing the bock?
Inside/in the Schwemme they'll have the regular beers, at the temporary serving taps in the yard I imagine they'll just have the bock. I haven't been for a few years and I was only drinking bock. If you get there early afternoon it may not look much different from any normal day, it starts to kick off after 16/17.00.
I did hear someone asking for a bock radler at one BBA...
A bock radler!
Just saw a post on FB that the place is open again. Are they brewing their own beers?
Highly, highly unlikely.
Don't see how they could unless they use someone else's brewhouse.
Yes, the brew house in Strassgeich is derelict -- when the Gänstellers ran the place the beer was brewed in Schnaid.
It will be interesting to see what brand is on the beers when (if) it opens. The only "Drei Kronen 1308" beer brewed these days are brewed in China (as far as I know). Of course that doesn't stop them calling any beer they serve "1308"
Asked on FB wether they brewed their own beer and got:
"Im Augenblick noch nicht, aber bald wieder!"
So hopefully something is happening in the future.
WE live in hope!
Made it to the Keller yesterday, Saturday, and it was ridiculously full. None of my old acquaintences/friends/whatever were there except Felix and his woman whose name escapes me. Doubt any of you knows Felix.
SUNDAY IS RUHETAG
Felix says it has to do with personnel issues, but I wonder if it simply isn't such a sh!ttery (as the German expression goes) on Sundays now that it's not worth it to them. I only saw Franz Roppelt once, before hearing about the new Ruhetag, so couldn't ask him about it.
No idea if this will translate to the Gaststaette when the Keller is closed.
Also, Bockbierfest on 26th Oct.
Had a Schaeuferla, Haxe, and pair of Wurst on a plate for my lunch/supper. Meh. Pretty cheap though, 13.60 EUR for all that, no nasty Kloss, Brot, or Sauerkraut. Beer is up to 4.70E/Mass. Seidla 2.40E IIRC, which I'm sure will set the Britons off.
Was nice to catch up with Felix. He's now battling cancer. Was intrigued by a meat-based way of eating.
Old news re Sunday openings, it’s all about the employment laws or at least that’s what was originally cited.
Not quite syre what the point about britons and prices meant, but I guess solace should be taken in the fact you posted about Franconia beer in the Franconia beer guide forum. Bang on subject.
Sorry to encroach on your forum, Jason! As I said elsewhere, if you don't like what I say, ignore me. Mentally block me. Whatever it takes to make your life easier.
It was a joke Nick. Chill out.
I keep forgetting if a Jerseyman is English but not British or the other way round. Or something else.
Anyway, the amount of whinging I've heard about prices for half litres not being exactly half that of a liter from other Britons is >0. That was my point. I don't think Yanks or Germans take it so seriously. I am imperfect, and can not keep every discussion that has ever occured on here in my biological RAM.
Hope your job's going well. Wish me luck in finding one! Then I won't have to worry about prices of anything so much myself.
Back to Roppelt's. wow! Not sure what >0 means in this case - thought it meant 0, if so, what's the point?
From my experience, every country charges more for half of beer than a full measure; I remember that it used to irk me in Ireland but, as my landlord friend told me, his costs were not just the liquid in the glass but all the ancilliary items as well, so I suppose that it's fair enough. I've just been in Prague with my friend Ludwig from Eschawo and he tends to drink in quarter litres and they do cost proportionally more than half litres. But the prices are low enough that it hardly matters.
Talking of which, I am now the proud possesor of a Zoigl Erleben Tag poster and leaflet!
It is perfectly acceptable to be charged more for a half than for a full measure. It's common sense really, the same way that you shouldn't get free tap water or you shouldn't go into a pub and not purchase something.
So it's not really about 'supposing' that something is fair enough, it IS fair enough. In my younger days it used to 'irk' me too, but now i have learned why, I realise i was wrong.
Why stop at tap water? Surely something must also be done about the effrontery of freeloaders using the pub's glassware and cutlery for free, and sitting on chairs. If customers could be charged by the minute for sitting on a chair, publicans would find it much easier to determine which customers are most profitable and worth serving. Those newspapers could be charged by the minute too, or perhaps by the word, and it should cost more to sit closer to the heating in the winter. These things all cost money you know!
Amount of common sense applied, zero.
I haven't even started yet! How dare customers expect to use the pub's electric lights for nothing? It's just stealing, that's all it is. You should have to put a coin in the meter on your table before you get to see.
Really, I have every sympathy with publicans trying to operate on tight margins when they express resentment about the cost of things that they feel obliged to do at zero charge. I just don't think acting like Scrooge is the answer.
I go to pubs because they make me feel welcome and relaxed. If I'm made to feel like a cash cow and nickel-and-dimed at every opportunity, the pub is shooting itself in the foot.
There is one exception. I would be very happy if pubs could figure out some way of charging customers for music on a no-pay, no-hear basis, then I wouldn't have to listen to the bar staff's shitty choice of tunes.
How welcome and relaxed is the question? I mean there are some places that charge good money to make you feel very welcome and relaxed indeed. Helga at Spezial never made me feel welcome and relaxed and quite frankly I don't think I'd like to offer and pay for that service. I don't know where I'm going with this ....
Whatever you're on, we'd like some!
It's not what I'm on. It's what I'm not on. Lack of Franconian beer for now going on two months is making me irrational.
Maybe that when the atmosphere is relaxed and welcoming you are likely to stay longer, return more often and spend more money there.
"It's easier to retain an existing customer than it is to find a new one." After all, marketing is expensive too.
So, like Ryanair, you mean? :)
I have created a viewable (hopefully sortable) Google Sheet of the data, and added a few others I came across recently:
Let me know if you have any issues.
So I spent a few hours sampling the new Sternla Zwickl on Saturday afternoon. The quality was fine, nothing exciting and I must admit i was hoping for better, if i was a qualified brewmaster I would expect more. But it was drinkable and inoffensive.
They will brew a bock and then an export - the latter will need to be better quality than the zwickel to stand up to scrutiny. I'm sure the tourists will lap it up, and I can't help thinking that was the motivation behind the brewery.
Their bockbierantisch is on Friday 4 October, I hear.
Oh sorry, wrong brewery, that's Keesmann on 4 October.
Back to the correct subject now I've stopped confusing Sternla the pub/brewery with Sternla the Keesmann beer. I've booked my group in for lunch on Sunday 6 October at Sternla So hopefully, as they are tourists, they'll "lap it up". :)
Well, I'm fairly certain they won't have their own beer on regularly just yet, Saturday's pre release was a one off for now, the official opening will be at their Bockbieranstich in November (exact date TBC).
That's a shame. It would be good to try it, even if it's nothing special.
“It would be good to try it, even if it's nothing special.”
The motto of the beer ticker!
Not really in my case. But I suspect most of us like to try new beers from time to time. We probably wouldn't be here discussing Franconia, if that wasn't the case. I've always liked the pub and generally visit it at least once whilst in Bamberg, so I'm interested to see what they've produced. Not really sure anything needed to change there though.
I've put this as a new topic because 'Zoigltag' got a fair way off the subject in the end. I talked with Norbert Neugirg about it a fair bit last night. The idea was to avoid the chaos of the former Zoigltag in Neuhaus, which may have been a hoot for some, bu was a total pain for the residents. The idea was to present some of the 'deeper' cultural aspects of the tradition, with talks and films, etc., While enabling people to sample all the Zoigl towns. Anna Popp, Martin's daughter who is a chemist working for a brewery, gave an opening talk, and was followed by a doctor talking about the dangers of alcoholism! Sounds odd but everyone said that it was really good _ and then carried on drinking! Norbert said that attendance was a bit disappointing but it was the first try. Zoigl has now been recognised by UNESCO as an artefact óf special cultural significance and Norbert is in Brussels today, with the President of Bavaria and 60 litres of Gloser Zoigl - the latter driven there by special car! He's giving a speech about the significance of Zoigl to the people of the Oberpfalz while dressed in his 1920's fireman's uniform! Incredible.
Now that IS something i'd like to see. Very much deserved, I imagine he and the townspeople are very priud, and rightly so. It's like something out of Peter Mayle's Provence.
So, it seems the first official batch from Brauerei zum Sternla will be released this Saturday at the Lange Strassenfest.
I will report back on quality in due course. They clearly haven't rushed out the first beer, so I'm hopeful.
I wonder when the last proper brewery opened in Bamberg... I'm guessing in the 60s... was it Brauerei Doppel? Or even the last brewpub that opened... that would be quite a bit further back. Could be Keesmann, but probably not.
I'm not including Weyermann and certainly not Landwinkl. They're both hobby breweries, one certainly more than the other.
Ambräusianum would be the last, no? Are they still brewing? The beer was so bad in 2008 that I have never been back.
Ah of course. It says a lot that it escaped my romantic 'theory'.
Unfortunately they are still 'brewing' if that's the word. It amazes me that they still haven't managed/want to improve. It's reputation amongst Bambergers is as bad as it is on here.
Such a waste.
Like everyone else, have only been in there once. Theyve got the location though, Im sure plenty of undiscerning tourists get in there, especially if they find the Schlenkerla beer too challenging.
I've always liked the pub and always pop in when in Bamberg. Food is good too.
Anyone tried the new beer yet?
Given that it is released on this coming Saturday, I don't think anyone has, outside of the brewer and owner (I hope).
I saw that after I read the whole thread, doh!
Personally I don't class it as Bamberg. OK, Gaustadt has been included in the city limits since the 70s, but still...
Plus it's a hobby brewery for Kaiserdom.
Since Kaiserdom is normally included as a Bamberg brewery,
The one time I visited Kronprinz it was a bit dead and soulless, plus not sure Bamberg needs it.
It wasn’t meant to be a all encompassing question, I was just wondering ‘out loud’ so to say. You’re right, Kaiserdom is included. So I guess Kronprinz should also be included. But I’m more interested in the older history, in this instance.
Yes, that's certainly what we are interested in here. Not much point going to Bamberg to drink modern beer styles that are produced everywhere.
Possibly our opinions might have been different 20 years ago before the craft beer revolution swept across Europe, but possibly not?
Well I certainly wouldn't go if i was on holiday here. I went a few months ago for only the second time since it opened and walked out soon after. I've nothing against craft beer if it's good, but all the beer styles were a bit odd, IPA with guava fruit and other such things. Gimmicky. Bit like Hopfengarten. If you need lots of added ingredients to make your beer interesting you should be a chef, not a brewer (IMO).
That said I quite often go to Weyermann to buy some interesting bottles, just for a change. Not theirs, obviously, but it has as good a selection as some beer shops, and the prices are dirt cheap.
Good to know about Weyermanns shop. It's about time I visited for longer than a weekend again. Weekends with a group always follow a very similar pattern.
Brauerei Doppel was from what, roughly 1961-1971? If a ten year life is enough for a "proper brewery?" Plus one might argue that was just a continuation of the previous Doppel breweries going back to the early 1800's, just in a new location.
Maisel was 1894, I beleive. Before that Bamberger Exportbrauerei ("Hofbräu") was 1885.
I've heard talk of a "Zweibeltreter Bier" brewpub -- must have been 1980's or 1990's but that was before my time. My guess is it probably wouldn't fit as a "proper brewery"
Now safely ensconsed in the bosom of Eschawo! Weisse Schwan Stammtisch tonight but a bit of a fallow day tomorrow (Thursday ). Often, I've gone to Weiden but I've been many times in the past but I've never been in Marktredwitz - through it but not in it. So, has anyone been there and tried the beers? Generally, is it a place worth spending an afternoon? Thanks for anticipated replies!
Marktredwitz (simply known as Rawetz) is a beautiful small town on the fringe of Franconia with a nice brewery, Brauerei Nothhaft. Their range of beers is quite extensive. Good stuff, as I recall, though I hadn't had a Seidla of Nothhaft in the last 15 years. Also very nice is the neighbouring city of Wunsiedel with another nice brewery (Hönicka, very good beers). The best and coziest old pub has Brauerei Lang of Schönbrunn, just 2 km away from Wunsiedel. Makes approx. 10 - 15 km away from Rawetz. The Fichtelgebirge is a beautiful region. Recommended.
Having been more recently, the Nothhaft beers were fine. I think Juergen was being very generous with "Beautiful" :) but it's a pleasant place to spend a day I guess. I can also recommend Hoenicka beers and Brauerei Lang, having been there too, but without a car and no train station in the centre of Wunsiedel it might be tricky.
You could also visit Miterteich (from Rawetz) and Zoigl Oppl. Again buses needed.
"Beautiful" in the sense of "old industrial town". My kind of Beauty. ;-)
Ah ha... beauty is in the eye of the be(er)holder ;)
Have had good beer and food at Nothaft. Also, just 200 meters beyond Nothaft in the former independent Dörflas is a quaint old Gasthof, zum Goldenen Löwen. They also have Nothaft beers (and others)
Thanks everyone - the expertise of this forum is something special! So, today is now filled. Morning coffee (!) With various Zoiglfreunde, a trip to look at a private car collection (complete with a 1936 Singer le Mans - I'm so envious) and a visit to the mysterious Brueckenpfiff tonight! It's all happening in Eschawo. Maybe tomorrow but I've been promised a trip to Waldsassen, so wait & see.
I've got two locomotives from the Waldsassen brickworks. Just to mention... ;-)
Not sure that the brickworks were mentioned for a visit. Do they have a bar like that quarry that we went to?
No, I'm afraid. But they still do exist, which is a real rarity in these days of mega companies.
Excluding Franken of course, what are some great favourites and uniquely good beers of the region? I might want to do a 8-10 day trip mainly visiting different breweries - so region doesn't matter. And I assume gravity cask and/or keg the supreme option compared to the bottles, right? Do breweries tend to filter kegs as well (as heavily as the bottles)? Do the best Bavarian beers equal Franconian beers is quality?
Admittably, I don't know much - so please don't halt back any suggestions of breweries and beers. Over the years I collected these suggestions but unfortunately without context.
# Bayerisch Böhmische Brauhaus
# Communebrauerei Kaufbeuren
# Brauerei Goss
# Schlossbrauerei Eichenhof
# Hembacher (Franken?)
This is a big topic and not easy to answer. What is easy to answer is yes, gravity barrel, then lager tanks, then keg, then bottles would be my order of preference. Kegs are filtered or unfiltered depending on the beer, there is no rule to this. And for sure, the best Bavarian breweries are equal to their Franconia counterparts and in some cases exceed.
From your list, Pyraser, Hembach and Wiethaler are in Franken. Schonramer is excellent, Augustiner very good as are Goss and Berghammer. But it’s a random list as you say.
I think you need to be more specific about where you want to visit / what you want to do and perhaps look on RateBeer for their maps to check out where the breweries are and plan a trip around that. In general, the quality of beer is very high, and the difference between the best and the worst (with a few exceptions) isn’t huge, so without more of a plan it’s too wide a scope. I would say Tegernsee is a must, due to the beauty of the area and the great beerhall. The beer is good (maybe very good) but not the major draw. Bürgerbräu in Bad Reichenhall is one of the best in the country and is also set in wonderful alpine scenery - I would encourage not focusing on breweries but on beautiful locations - many have breweries.
Happy to help further, I’ve visited many of the breweries across Bavaria and I can also help with recommending places to visit.
Are you looking for places to drink yourself or are you looking for kegs/bottles to purchase and take with you?
A really good Bavarian beer is Gansbräu Neumarkt/Oberpfalz, the smallest and most unknown of the three Neumarkt breweries. Also has a nice beer garden, I've heard.
Another one I can recommend is Brauerei Pöllinger in Pfeffenhausen/Hallertau. Two other good ones are Falterbräu Regen and 1. Dampfbierbrauerei Zwiesel, both in the Bavarian Forest. There are surely way more good ones but the Bavarian beer style is often quite sweetish and sticky. So, the ones mentioned above don't brew sweet beers. ;-)
It’s all in the subject line. Due to personnel.
Positive: He should already sell his only-in-September-Rauchbier by now.
The thread on price increases reminded me to post about our 4 day visit to Munich at the end of July.
We went there after being in Franken (based on Bamberg as usual) for 10 days. Some suggested prior that it's better to visit Munich first to avoid the dissapointment of downgrade. But I don't think it really mattered. It's nice to have a change of scenery after 10 days in one spot regardless of the order. It's a different kettle of fish than Franken for sure and not comparable beer wise but we had a great time in and around Munich regardless.
One of the things that really made the 4 days enjoyable was the day trips. We went to Tegernsee one day which was well worth it and of course did the day trip to Salzburg via a detour to Bad Reichenhall. Big kudos to the brewery in Bad Reichenhall. It was one of our favorites of the whole trip and I think worthy of a revist and a place to overnight for a couple of nights. Salzburg was great of course and those that have been to the monastery brewery there need no explanation. The beer and the atmosphere are both wonderful. The train station in Freilassing was the junction to get to Bad Reichenhall and then back to the main line to Salzburg. We did take advantage of the stop there to visit the Weissbierbrauerei in Freilassing. It was kind of an old school/local hangout type of place. I mean really why wouldn't it be. I can't imagine a lot of tourists stopping off at Freilassing. The beer was decent as far as Weissbiers go and I think they only had one on tap.
The only other short trip we did outside of Munich was a train ride out to Brauerei Maisach. This I highly recommend. Very nice beer and the beer garden out back almost has a Franconian bier keller type atmoshphere to it (albeit flat terrain).
As far as Munich goes I don't think we did anything unique but here are the highlights/lowlights:
Hirschgarten I think was our unanimous favorite place to be in the city and I'd have to put Augustiner Keller second. I just enjoy the big, self service, bier garten atmopsheres of those places.
Also enjoyed walking around and drinking at Viktualenmarkt on our last day. Did stop at Der Schorr while over there for lunch and it was by far the priciest place of the trip.
We spent sometime at the Ayinger pub across from the Hofbrauhaus and managed to get a couple of the beers from the barrel that they tapped later than usual. The barrel emptied fairly quickly as it was busy.
We did visit the Nuernberger Bratwurst Glockl Am Dom for some dinner and Augustiner from the barrel. I liked this place a lot for the beer and the atmosphere but were victims of the notorious Munich short pour that we heard about. We spoke up and problem was solved but it's annoying to have to complain about this to the waitress. We watched in disbelief at the number of short pours that were being carried out to patrons. Some of them were apalling. I can't say that this was a big problem at any other establishment that we visited.
The beer and food was very good at Augustiner Grossgastatte.
A lowlight was Andechs Am Dom. Well the Helles was okay but the Dunkel was not good and two of us ordered it and refused to drink it. Sickly sweet.
The Tap House over by the Ostbahnhof did not impress either. Small, expensive pours of mediocre "craft beer". I'm not opposed to multi-tap craft beer pubs. I really like some of the ones in Prague. This one in Munich was lame.
All in all I like Munich but I like the day trips available from the city the best. I'm not going to be in a rush to revisit. I think next time around in southern Bavaria we'll spend more time in the mountains in places like Bad Reichenhall and probably skip Munich altogether but I'm glad we did the 4 days on this past trip there.
Re Bad Reichenhall where’s my kudos for the recommendation?! Haha. Glad you enjoyed it.
It’a a great place to stay and wonderful area.
Oh that was your idea?! Ronnie took all the credit. Interesting.
The bastard! He was talking about freilassing and I was like, just go to Bad Reichenhall.
I found Munich to be a complete letdown after Bamberg/Franconia. Salzburg, on the other hand, was great. Completely agree with you.
When You'll go next time to Munich, try to make it to Kloster Reutberg, a beautifully located former monastery with a Biergarten offering views to the Karwendel Alps, very good and authentic meals (they got some awards for the quality...) and last, but not least, some of the best Lagers You can find in Upper Bavaria!
I went there last year. Can’t agree more with the location. Can’t agree less about the beer. It was fine, but I’ve had it bottled as well and it never rose above ‘fine’.
I got the impression they were much more concerned by the food than the beer. But maybe I went on a bad day. Pretty sure you need a car (I drove).
Went there two times from Munich by train to Schaftlach and took then a 45 minutes walk through the fields and the woods. That was surely one reason, that the beer tasted so good...;-)
Last time we were at Hirschgarten (a few years), we had to leave because of the stench of deer manure!
Glad to hear that you all had a good time! Hard to follow the week - ish in Bamberg but I like the sound of the trip to Salzburg and Bad Reichenall. I suppose that I could do that easilyenough from Eschawo, must try it but not on forthcoming trip, too short.
Glad to hear that you all had a good time! Hard to follow the week - ish in Bamberg but I like the sound of the trip to Salzburg and Bad Reichenall. I suppose that I could do that easilyenough from Eschawo, must try it but not on forthcoming trip, too short.
I second the positive comments concerning the Hirschgerten and Salzburg. Also worth a mention are the Schneider and Tegernsee pubs opposite each other on a leafy stretch of Tal, just down from Marienplatz.
I had terribly fizzy beer served by an uninterested waiter at the Tegernsee place. We decided to just take the train to Tegernsee instead and drink in the brewery tap. Much better idea if you have a spare afternoon.
Schneider im Tal is great though.
Shame you had a bad experience, and for Tegernsee as it's a great shop window for them. I did think the place was a bit dull and lifeless inside but it was a sunny day...
I did forget to mention Schneider. We did go there and really enjoyed it. One of the better places in Munich IMO.
We'll be in Bamberg and surrounds for four nights in about three weeks. I keep reading about Franconian Dunkel. Anyone have some suggestions as to where to find some nice Franconian-style darks? I already have my kellerbier stops set. Thanks, in advance.
I’m guessing Franconian Dunkel refers to those mainly brewed in the fränkischer Schweiz region to the east of bamberg. They are more amber in colour and have good bitterness. The best examples, Meister, Held Brau, Penning Zeisler, Gradl, Stöckel etc.
Thre aren’t really any in Bamberg, certainly not in this style. Fässla do a dark lager but it’s more on the sweet side. Keesmann probably come closest with their Sternla lager. Eichhorn in doerfleins make by far the best, but it’s more in the Czech style, sweeter, darker and richer.
Unfortunately, many of the breweries in the Fränkischer Schweiz are quite hard to reach by public transport.
Another fantasy style. There is a local style as Jason describes – amber and hoppy – but it is almost never called Dunkel. Nowadays it often has a name but I remember seeing beer lists (if one item can be a list) where a brewery's single beer was called simply "Vollbier" or on one occasion just "Bier".
I think waitresses do not think in terms of beer styles. If you ask for a Dunkles you will generally get the darkest beer they have, whatever it is.
Just to add: many of these beers are called Altfraenkisches Vollbier or Dunkles Lagerbier or something similar. Without going too deep into German grammar, the word Dunkles is an adjective i.e. dark (the ending depends on the noun - das bier therefore -es). A Dunkel is a specific style of beer (with nuances). Therefore it could be that you ask for a Dunkel and they'll say they don't have one. But they'll have a dunkles, with either Vollbier or Lager as the noun. It's the same with Helles - it's an adjective and a style. If you ask for a helles in Franken you're likely to get a pale beer but very unlikely that it's a Helles (in the Munich style).
If you ask for "ein bier" anywhere you will get the house beer, even if they have a few on draft. And most of the places in the Fraekischer Schweiz only have 1 draft beer anyway.
The dark beers at Ebing and Ebensfeld are decent IMHO, easily accessibe by train.
Ebing yes, Ebensfeld? Not sure what beer you are referring to John. The only place that I know where it's easy to get Ebensfelder beer vom Fass is Engelhardt's Keller (normal summer hours, of course) and only Kellerbier, nice but not a Dunkel. Your post reminds me that Hellmuth in Wiesen brew an excellent Dunkel (called Hanna Maerzenbier on their website). Reblitz brew an occasional Raeucherla and Trunk brew a Dunkel (Nothelfer). These off the top of my head.
Maybe Im conflating it with Ebing? Its a while since I was there, ks the brewery tap closed?
Sadly, it opens and closes with great regularity - particularly as I stay opposite every year (sometimes more than once!). Currently (well in May & earlier) it is securely locked & bolted. Fortunately, Engelhardt Keller is close at hand and a very pleasant place to spend an evening but they only have the Kellerbier vom Fass but the other beers im Flasche (is that correct). There are also quite a few breweries available with shortish walks and most with excellent beers. I don't actually know of any other place that serves Engelhardt beers, though they are easily available in Trinkmarkt etc.
In der Flasche. Die Flasche in Dativ is der.
I've heard that the "Dunkles Lagerbier" at Kathi Bräu in Heckenhof is very nice.
I really enjoyed the Dunkel at Mager in Pottenstein (it is called a Dunkel on the menu). It was drier and more bitter than the Dunkels I had in Munich, which I think is what broadly sets them apart from the more standard and widely-known Munich Dunkels.
I agree with you about the Dunkel at Mager in Pottenstein. One of my favorites. You've also got Hoffman in Hohenschwarz with a dunkel on regularly. I also thought the one at Elch in Thuisbrunn was excellent.
The Kathi-Bräu dunkel is very variable I’m afraid. And that’s being generous. Classic place though.
There was an excellenr example in Eggolsheim (Schwarzes Kreuz?) now closed I believe?
Yes, for 10 years or so. I visited once and remember the beer being good.
And cheap 1.50 Eur about 10/12 years ago.
To be fair, I would say back then that was normal for a beer outside of a large town (like Bamberg).
But yeah, cheap.
Yes, I think Mühlenbräu was the same price.
On arrival in Dörfleins this evening after they reopened post Urlaub, there was a note on the door setting out price increases, 2,50€ now, up 10cents.
I’m very divided on this topic and i don’t have a strong opinion either way. I’m divided because I feel the beer here is cheap - Bamberg excepted - but I’m not comfortable with regular price hikes. I can’t remember the last time the beer went up in Dörfleins, but I know that Spezial and Schlenkerla (and others) have developed an annoying habit of simply raising prices by 10cents every year. I’ve no idea whether they make a qualitative evaluation of costs etc before this or whether they do it “because they can”. Fluctuations in raw materials are factors of course. But where does this end? Schlenkerla don’t need it, that’s for sure, it’s a gold mine, no question.
As far as I can tell (again, this isn’t a scientific study), bottled beer prices are not rising and are a long way away from pub prices, at around 70cents per bottle. At what point will
people begin to stay at home? Could be a way away but food prices are also rising.
I also wonder about beer prices in Munich. How much higher can they go before people start to question the economic viability of drinking out? Granted Bavaria and Munich are rich, but inflation isn’t rising at the rate of beer prices. And let’s not forget the Augustiner brewery tap
serves beer 20cents cheaper than in Bamberg currently. But they can probably afford to.
What about the service personnel? The boundary between 2,90€ and 3€ would have hurt them too as they wouldn’t get much rounding up. What about beer tax? Germany has the lowest in Europe, I reckon the profit per beer made in some Bamberg breweries is higher than many London breweries, notwithstanding the retail price differential.
No idea where this is going, if anyone has any experience would be interesting to hear.
*one of the lowest beer taxes in Europe
You would think the poor quality of beer in Munich and endemic short measure would drive people away before the prices did, but people are not rational economic actors despite what the textbooks say.
I don't agree with "poor quality of beer in Munich". And if I get short measured I tell them to top it up. Agree with your final point.
Well, in comparison to its overblown reputation it is poor. I'm talking about the big six brands from four breweries here of course. They have been resting on their laurels for a very long time. In reality the beer (IMHO naturally) ranges from mediocre to merely enjoyable.
The glory of drinking in Munich is its beer gardens. The liquid itself ...
Well I only drink Augustiner from those breweries, and I wish I could drink the Helles (vom holzfass of course), in Bamberg. I'm definitely being greedy, but it's a lovely drop when served the way it should be. I wouldn't bother with it on keg or bottled. On a hot day it's unbeatable, even in Bamberg, for refreshment.
So you disagree that the beer is poor yet there is only one of them you'll drink? ;)
Only 1 of the ‘big 6’, yes. But it can be outstanding, and you can have a pretty reasonable pub and garden crawl just drinking Augustiner, almost always from Holzfass. Nürnberger Bratwurst, Großgastätte, the brewery, the Augustiner Keller and the Hirschgarten.
There are other breweries and drinking options in Munich. It’s overhyped, but not to the point where one should be overly cynical about its attractions. If you offered me Munich or Berlin I wouldn’t think twice.
I have to say I wasn't very keen on Augustoner in Munich. But that's the subjective nature of beer.
Unfortunately reliable informations about this year's Bockbieranstich in the several franconian villages are hardly to find in the web. Does anybody know a site with the right informations?
It's a bit early... I would wait another few weeks then check again.
If I'm reading correctly:
Schlenkerla: Oct 10
Fässla: Oct 24
Spezial: "Early Nov"
My question is "who has darker bocks?", other than Schlenkerla.
I've been there for a few releases, and all seem pretty "helles"!
(I think Fässla's may have been the darkest I've had.)
In the USA, we typically call lighter bocks "Maibock".
It's mainly due to the US having more experience with the southern Bavarian bock styles, not the Franconian. Maibocks are almost always light wherever you go. Doppelbocks are almost always dark. The latter are released mainly in March time, during Fastenzeit. But in Franconia, most Bockbiers are light and we don't really have Doppelbocks, aside from a few during fastenzeit, and these are fastenbocks. There are exceptions, but not many. Of course the lines are blurred across styles.
Off the top of my head, both Hummel and Wagner release light and pale bockbiers. Gradl in Leups has a dark bock. And of course Spezial. Those aside, and Fassla's rather sickly amber bock, the majority are light.
Fassla's Bock tasted really good a couple of years ago during their Anstich party...
Could have been the experience/environment, and the fact that I was leaving to return home in the morning...
As homebrewers say "the last pint is the best"!
I thought it was the first pint?
Or maybe that's just me?
No, for some reason, it's the LAST !
Maybe we are getting accustomed to the beer, and savoring it, and THEN IT RUNS OUT !
Maybe it's not really that good, but we're still really thirsty, and have no more beer !
But, it's the last....
The first beer I ever had in Bamberg was Hummel Kellerbier at Cafe Abseits. And my subjective memory still tells me it was the best I've ever had.
Thanks Gerhard. :)
Franconia has some Doppelbocks, but often the breweries don't use this word as a part of the beer name, p.e.
Huppendorfer Kathrein-BockHuppendorfer Josefi-Bock
both with 18.6 ° Plato.
Or they show the property of Doppelbock by a name ending on -ator. p.e. Fässla Bambergator.
Bockbieranstich at Brauerei Schleicher, Kaltenbrunn: 2nd of October.
Here's a pretty complete list Günther:
Has anyone had any recent experience of visiting Weyermann. I wanted a tour for a group on Friday 4 October but they can't do a time to suit us. Is there any facility to taste beer at the shop as it will be open?
There used to be a mad Slovenien working there who would feed me beer on Saturday lunchtimes but the selfish b****** went to live in Munich.
There’s a pleasant gent working there now who might oblige but I’m not sure it’s ‘nornal’. All their beers are refrigerated and so, worst case, you can buy some to take away. But I imagine you’ll be able to sit and have glasses, especially as it’s their beer.
I'm in conversation with them via email. Seems there's not much point other than on Saturdays when it's "Open Bottle Day". Might as well go to Fässla earlier instead.
Abseits has nowadays quite a big bottle list of Weyermann beers!
I'll be honest, and everyone has their reasons for wishing to try beers, but I wouldn't lose sleep over them. All very correct but just a bit boring.
A few years ago, my buddy and I bought a couple of bottles at the gift shop.
It was terrible.
Agree with Jason! I've drunk their beers in their little internal bar and also there's a place on the road to Memmelsdorf that sold their beers a few years ago, I don't know if they still do. Overpriced and not especially interesting. Just go to Faessla.
Schlotfergerla (chimney sweep...encountered 3 of them for good luck recently) is a good ... Schwarzbier, IIRC. Competently brewed, but unless you're ticking (and why not, if that's one's personal interest?), nothing you can't find elsewhere. Barleywine this or that have been good, IPA, and...? Meh.
Abseits is an excellent place to try them as someone said above, with the benefit of experiencing another side of Franconian beer culture: that of the uni student café.
Yes, it was the tour that was of interest more than the beers as an initial driver but nevermind, we'll fill our time elsewhere.
Of course Abseits will feature at some point, probably as a last stop on the Friday.
Anyone know what time the Diller Keller opens these days? The Raupach guide says 1430 daily, but it’s out of date and the timings may have drifted.
Google and their Facebook page say 4pm. I would work on that. Theres a phone number given as well.
Sunday 8 september in all five Zoigl towns. Special busses connect all towns with Windischeschenbach railway station.
Oh dear. May be a day to stay away. I forget if I was there for this previously...was that the time I saw Mark & his missus there?
[Rolling eyes] Or a day to go and enjoy the opportunity to visit as many places as you like without needing a car. And celebrate zoigl culture. If I didn't have football commitments I would be going.
Don't get so worked up. I don't even drink beer any more, so if I wanted to enjoy some other aspect of life in Windischeschenbach (or more likely, Falkenburg), I might skip this day and choose a more normal one, that's not overrun with people drinking and eating themselves stinky between all the Zoiglstuben.
Wasn’t getting worked up at all. I just feel it’s a good opportunity. God forbid anyone get a bit drunk at a beer festival 1 day a year. Hardly going to be the Oktoberfest is it.
Of course, if you really don’t drink beer anymore (sweeping statement considering recent history), i would imagine it certainly wouldn’t appeal to you, kind of obvious.
But there are many people who view this forum for info and may be put off by such comments, which would be a great shame - I’m just redressing the balance.
Made you roll your eyes though, that's getting worked up to me. And I would have likely suggested ***I*** would avoid the day back before I went looney or whatever everyone thinks happened to me a couple of years ago. I became tired of the drunkenness the last year or so I was in that lovely city you can't stand. I don't require that everyone on here keep track of my personal interests though.
I didn't say anyone else shouldn't enjoy it, especially the beer TOURISTS who populate this board. It's only you and me that have up and moved here, AFAIK.
Why the skepticism about my not drinking alcohol any more? It happens. Hell, I've known lots of peole working in the pub trade (for lack of a better term) that are teetotal. I myself was teetotal from age 17 til 27, during college. Best friends I've ever had were from the social circle I was in back then, Mrs excepted. Meaning, she's my best friend ever, and wasn't part of that circle.
Ironically, it's because of beer that we ended up in Europe at all. We caught the move-overseas bug from the experiences we had as tourists, but more importantly from a former homebrewing friend of mine from Seattle who moved to Enschede, NL for his first post-PhD teaching job. In English. He then moved to Plymouth a few years later, where he's been ever since. Burned through a number of women & wives in the interim, most notably a British lady cop, but that's beside the point.
The Tandleman is friends with him, and always wondered how he managed to get and lose so many women, despite being an "ugly, short bastard that's too full of himself". Well, Peter, he IS a college professor!
Anyway, I had never had a Kellerbier before hearing about it from the Portland, OR homebrewing crowd. And the only thing available to try back then was bottled St. Georgenbraeu, which is of course a bit of an outlier in its darkness and maltiness (for lack of a better word). And so I thought Kellerbier was dark and malty. I had no idea how diverse it was until the first summer we spent here, 2005, when I went tooling around the countryside on the Kinderrad (child's bike) that the Italian bike shop near our place in That Nameless City Between Bamberg & Nuernberg sold us on the cheap.
The exploration of Bockbier during the fall and winter 2004 (we landed here on 13th Sep, spent 7 weeks in a hotel flat in Herzogenaurach waiting on our household goods to arrive by container ship...not including my car, which I shipped separately) was also an eye-opener. Despite having been a massive beer (lager) geek/nerd/whatever for years, I had had no idea of the diversity of Franconian Bockbier in autumn & winter. And that so much of it was like Maibock...and then that there were dark-ish Franconian Maibock(s) as well.
It also strikes me that there has been lots of back-n-forth on here over the years about whether tourists should enjoy the "normal" beer culture, not just festivals. I imagine I've gone both ways on that myself. I have a hard time imagining any visitors to this forum being put off by one looney former drunk (presuming that's what you're implying about me above) saying he would avoid the stinky drunk fest.
I have no idea what the Oktoberfest is like. Never bothered with it.
Aaargh!!! he mentioned the Tandleman!!!
As for Oktoberfest, you haven't missed anything.
Yeah, the Tand and I go back a bit. Kind of on the outs now, but life is what it is. He doesn't like me much NOT being fat, drunk, and happy, basically. Or whatever. He's a big boy. He'll survive not having me following him around any more.
We're opposite sides of the new divide that Cameron created, being as I'm a pro-EU activist and he is ****************
But you didn't say ***I***, you just said "a day to avoid". Like I said, I redressed the balance. I've moved on, worked up or not.
I'm not sceptical about you giving up alcohol. I AM sceptical when people make massive u turns in their living habits and make a big show of it. I'm no psychologist but it strikes me as being confused and suggests a loss of direction. I see it on FB from you every day. And on that particular medium you're very loud about doing it. Same with the diet thing. And the Vegas thing. Nothing wrong with doing any of it, but you seem to be trying to convince people (or yourself, more to my point) that it's a good thing. If it makes your life better, do it, I wish you all the best, but it struck me that "the man doth protest too much". I get it, it happens all the time, when people suffer a trauma or big life change like divorce for example, they typically throw themselves into new things, new lifestyles, in an effort to find themselves again. But these are often phases which wear off over time. Who knows, maybe your beer drinking phase was just that, and now you're reverting to who you want to be.
When I'm in a good place, and I imagine it's the same with most people, I balance all the things I enjoy with the things I 'have' to do in my life. Unless it's seriously affecting your health or lifestyle, giving something up that you enjoy is an extreme measure, especially when I wouldn't call you anything like an alcoholic - you used to water down good beer with NA beer for goodness sake. One day, I may have to cut down, but there's no way I would give up something that has given me so much in my life (as a beverage, but more so as an inspiration to travel, engage with people and move abroad). Similar to your story.
Anyway, going way off topic here.
Still OT: I have to admit, Nick, I don't really understand the life you're leading now. And I don't understand your facebook-posts that show meat, the dog, yourself. That's why I never react on them. Way too extraterrestrial for me. Well, you don't have any hobbies or passions that keep you occupied, do you? And, yes, I see it the same way as Jason does.
My farcebook stuff is just an offshoot from what I post on instagrim. Remember, I'm the guy who never used it before a few years ago, when I started playing around with it.
I'm flattered that you two are concerned about my well being. I don't have hobbies to pursue now, no. I'm going through a lot of stuff, just trying to live. My life has turned completely upside down in the last two years, and there's a lot of backstory to tell that I'm not going to get into here.
Just ignore me. Unfollow or whatever. I may dump the fb account anyway.
AFA my protesting too much or not, judge not lest ye be judged yourself. Life is sometimes complicated.
The way people market themselves today is simply unseemly. I try to do the same thing and nobody gets it except those few who have the same interests I do. That's to be expected, I guess.
The things I used to get worked up over...beer and food and whatever else I used to argue about on here. Then life took a dramatic, sudden change (divorce is HELL, as they say, second only to death) and I ended up living amongst and befriending people from backgrounds so completely opposite to mine that I would've
If I've not said it before, B & I used to laugh about the idea of visiting Vegas. She'd been once for work, and we took two trips to Reno in the 90s when we were young together. I ONLY ENDED UP THERE AS A FLUKE. And then something clicked. I was trying to start up a new life for me and also for B, and I walked into trouble.
I hope I don't offend anyone ever again on here, you're all (mostly) good people. Wish I had the luxury of a place to live, a job, and the time to pursue hobbies like I used to. Life has its ups and downs, and I'm in a down phase. I'm trying to cope. Sorry if I haven't managed it well on here. Nothing new for me, I've always struggled with social competency. It's a miracle I made it 52 years before ending up in trouble.
Be grateful for what you all have. The luxury to come on here and go on about your beer hobbies.
Divorce is an absolutely normal thing. The percentage of divorces in Germany from the 2000s to this day lies between 40 and 50 %. I'm divorced, too. It's probably your own personal hell, as people react different to major changes in life. For most people it's not. But hey, that's life. Hope you get your things sorted out.
Thanks for the good wishes, but it is not a normal thing for Mrs & me. People kill themselves over ended marriages.
And it is but one of many things I'm currently going through, whereas from 15 until 2 years ago, I hadn't a care in the world, except the matter of the slowlydecaying marriage. I don't have a job. I am moving back to the US, not sure where. Maybe I'll find someone who will help me get a good job when I get there. I am not rich, I am living off savings.
I have lots of familial baggage to deal with. My parents are declining. My sister's gone nuts. The matter of my getting into a bit of legal trouble in that US city that shan't be named again...trivial in comparison. But enough complaining. Thanks again for your well wishes.
In the discussion above about my no longer drinking alcohol, I admit to having lost track of what Jason was getting at. The fact is, I am better off without it. It is a depressant, and in my case, it depressed my life. We wouldn't be here having this back-n-forth today if it weren't for my decades-long obsession with it, but life is what it is.
Since this is a "virtual Stammtisch"...is Franconian beer the only thing people discuss at real life Stammtisches? If one person goes on about a topic too long or too deep, the conversation will be directed away from that...kind of like in a British pub. Go figure.
If it gets ugly, cross words might be exchanged at a Stammtisch. In a British pub, glassing might occur. In an American bar...gunshots! Perspective.
Sorry again Fred for any stress. I'm trying to be good.
I've probably spent more time on a Bayerische Stammtisch than most people on this forum (probably than most non-German residents) due to my involvement in Eschawo. At the Weisse Schwann, the talk is rarely about beer (Zoigl) except probably when I'm there. But, the regulars are all very old friends and the Stammtisch was set up to continue their friendship rather than to discuss Zoigl.
My view, and one that I've previously stated, is that this Forum should be able to accommodate a reasonable breadth of discussion but without going too wildly away from Frankische beer for too long. AFAIK, Fred set this Forum up to talk about Frankische beer but I think that he would accept that other topics are ok - but not for too long.
My sympathies are with you Nick, we've known each other long enough to be able to talk like adults but this is certainly not a good substitute for proper marriage guidance.
Sorry Jason, I posted in haste yesterday. I appreciate your good wishes. Basically, my old life was going nowhere fast.
Like I said to Juergen, I don't use fb for anything other than to contact people who I can only contact that way. I have instagrim set to post there automatically. I THOUGHT people use "social media" to show others what they're up to.
I used to tweet pics of litres of Stiebarlimbacher Kellerbier almost daily. Then I landed where I did in 2018 and started tweeting and instagramming pics of stuff I was doing there. I guess I got it wrong somehow. I guess I didn't make it clear enough that I was TRYING to get a new life started up, in a totally new direction. I screwed up.
I've got 20 years on you, IIRC. Much of those 20 years were wasted on sloth and drinking too much. My wife used to tell me my brain was "turning to mush". I wasn't challenged enough, wasn't doing enough. It took changing how I eat and working on my fitness to rejuvinate and wake me up. I seem to have woken up into a bad dream though. That's the best way I can put it.
Does anyone like the Stiebarlimbacher Dunkel? I forget if I did, but I know I tried it.
No we were not there at that time. It was early October I think. And I agree with Jason. Sounds like potentially a great day on the Zoigl complete with bus service. If they do this again next year I will consider going.
Don't they do this every year? Or am I thinking of something else. Memory ain't what it used to be, considering how much I used to drink back then...I'm surprised I can remember as much as I do. And then there was the head injury I received last year that knocked an entire week or two out.
This is new. There used to be a Zoigl-day in Neuhaus only, on the 3rd of october until 2016.
Ah yes. On the big reunification holiday.
I will be in Eschawo from September 10 to 15 (Weisse Schwan Stamtisch + Gloser and Schoilmichel); September 15 to 20 back in Prague!
I hadn't intended to go back to Prague so quickly but a friend in Eschawo reminded me that I'd promised to go with him this September - so, a promise is a promise and this one is so difficult to keep! We've only got 5 nights and I bet several of my Forum friends will have little difficulty in naming the most likely places for a visit! Hint, unlikely to include beers selling IPA (east or west coast), stouts, porters, pales, etc. Well, mostly.
If I can swing it, Barry, we'll meet you. We have our stuff in storage in Erlangen, and I expect to pick some of it up soon. Maybe sooner than 10th Sep though...have to see.
Too late to change your plans? Spend the first part of your trip here with me & doggo. Have to put up with Frueh Koelsch & Bit (and Grimbergen!) on keg down the local, but they do a mean fried camembert.
You don’t change nick...
Sorry Nick, plans in concrete, obligations to others etc. Your temptations are dubious to say the least.
I'm going to be pretty busy in the few days that I'm in Eschawo - I don't get there until around midnight (film?) Tuesday, Wednesday in Stamtisch, Thursday, actually free (!), Friday/Saturday between Gloser and Schoilmichel catching up with friends. Sunday morning, heading for Prague.
Be good to see you and that's my schedule!
Annafest was a great time as it has always been for me. We had a fairly good size group of about 10-11 people and Annafest is perfect for that. No trouble finding seats. Easy to get to and from and no admission price as always. We were there on the 1st Saturday so naturally it did get crowded as it got into the evening, especially at the kellers at the bottom of the hill and we left at about 9:30-10pm once we got fed up with that. But still the atmosphere for most of it was great.
We started out at the top at Neder keller. Their festbier was good as it usually is. Then to the Hoffman keller for a Greif. Very bland. Eichhorn keller was next and their festbier kicked up a notch and was very good. Next was Hebendanz which we all agreed was the best festbier that we had that day. But we all also enjoyed the beer from Schanzenbrau. Not brewed specifically for Annafest. It was their Rotbier but it was a nice departure from the festbiers and you could get a seidla instead of a mass if you wanted. Never did get to have a Loewenbrau from Buttenheim as we decided to bail out after the crowds got too big.
In conclusion ... Annafest hasn't changed thankfully. It's still a great time. Don't let the beer prices ruin it. It's worth the few extra euros spent over the course of the day.
Canalissimo on the other hand .... well now the entrances are controlled and limited and there is a 3 euro admission fee which I guess is to pay for various things like the shitty bands they have playing. I think the event has shrunk a bit and just doesn't appeal to me as much as I thought it did from the first year I went. Breweries there were Hummel with their nice kellerbier from the barrel. Knoblauch, Sonne from Bischberg, Moenchsambacher (from keg), and a couple of others. Just meh. I wouldn't ever plan a future trip around it. Admittedly part of the problem is that the days we went we were in the middle of a nasty heat wave so that didn't help. Metzgerbrau was there the first time I went and they weren't this time. That also didn't help.
Just a note on Canalissimo: there is a nasty resident in the area who will stop at nothing to get the event cancelled. Unfortunately (in this case, of course in other examples it’s more benign) in Germany 1 person has a lot of power. Rather than just taking a holiday, this person has (I understand) been in constant contact with the authorities (perhaps via a lawyer) to trip up the festival organizers in any way possible. One is safety and crowd control. Hence the artificial bridge and now the control of numbers at the entrances. The 3€ covers the extra costs. I’m sympathetic, but I agree that it has lost something as a result and the beer selection isn’t too exciting. I’m pretty sure the turnout was lower this year, but it was hot. Maybe Gerhard is more in the know about this.
Completely agree re Annafest. I’m weary of hearing people going on about crowds. It’s a big event and is for all, families, groups of guys and girls, young and old. And they all have a right to party as they see fit. And as for the prices, it’s once a year, the beer is strong and there’s a great atmosphere. If it helps boost the profits for local breweries I don’t begrudge it, beer is too cheap here anyway.
Most of what you say sounds eminently sensible to myself Jason, I would expect crowds, drunks, high prices,and bearing in mind the fairground,families.
But young sir, to a man with empty pockets beer is never too cheap!
I wonder that paying 9 EUR a Maß is not a bit of a culture shock to the locals though, or do they just accept that beer at the Fest costs more?
Just imagine you're in Munich, then the beer price seems normal. :)
I was about to post this in response:
“That is what I was thinking of really. Of course beer is much more expensive generally in Munich, and the Oktoberfest is notorious for being extortionate – but even then a Maß at the Wiesn does not cost nearly twice what you would pay elsewhere in Munich.”
Well, that’s what I thought – but it turns out you can get a Maß of Augustiner Helles at the
Augustiner-Stuben for 5,60 compared to 11,80 for Festbier at the Wiesn. That's 110% more. If we compare it to the Annafest mark-up (9 EUR ÷ 5,20 EUR) which works out at +73%, it is even more expensive.
On the other hand, a Maß of Helles at the Hofbräuhaus is 9,20, so a Wiesn-Maß is only +28% more expensive than that.
So it really does depend where you drink. I am sure there are plenty of bars in Munich that are charging way more than the equivalent of Oktoberfest prices without anyone complaining!
(Yes I know Festbier is stronger than Helles and I'm not comparing like with like)
However, I couldn't get just a beer at Augustiner-Stuben, they wanted us to eat as well, it was oppressively crowded with seriously frosty staff. I can't imagine I'd go back.
Ahem. Neder isn't at the top. That's the tiny little Keller that I used to drag Uncle Jimbo up to, the name of which escapes me now, where he lagers his own batch of Festbier from Eichhorn (right?). Bluemlein's Keller, that's the one.
Glad nothing horrible happened like lightning taking down half a tree and killing someone like a decade or so ago...nothing horrible like that happened, right?
Yes, I love Blümlein Keller at the top of the Berg. Neder is near the middle, if I remember correctly.
My first Annafest I convinced a taxi driver to drive me from the train station up to Blümlein Keller; he had to back up a oneway street at the top.
I remember that.
Finally got around to doing this wander on our trip three weeks ago with some friends (including Jason and Barry) and found it very worthwhile and something I will absolutely aim to do again on a future visit. I had been to Hoffman and Lindenbrau previously this year on a driviing tour around the area but never did the hiking part of it.
Firstly it's fairly easy to get to the starting point from Bamberg. We took a train to Forchheim and then a bus (off the top of my head #223 but I'd have to look it up to confirm) from there to Weissenohe. While the bus ride was fairly long (about 40 minutes I think) it was also scenic and got us there in plenty of time to do what we came to do.
So we started off visiting the brewery in Weissenohe and it was well worth the stop as we all seemed to enjoy their beers. Of course their "Altfrankisch" Dunkel was fine but I particulary enjoyed a pilsener they had that was well hopped with Hersbrucker. They kind of gave it a craft beery name which made me skeptical but in the interest of science I ordered one and really quite enjoyed it.
Now in order to give us plenty of time to enjoy our stops we cheated a bit and didn't exactly do the entire hike. For example from Weissenohe we took the train to Grafenberg and then hopped a bus from there that dropped us off near Thuisbrunn. We would walk our way back from there to Grafenberg. I think that approach worked very well and kudos to Jason and Roonnie for working out those details.
Elch Brau in Thuisbrunn was excellent! It was a first visit there for me but I'd put this one on my ever expanding top ten list. Wonderful beers in a really nice beer garden. Worth the trip out there all on it's own.
The walk mostly up hill from there to Hoffman didn't take too long (40 minutes-ish). Hoffman was okay but not as good as I remembered it in May. I suspect the rush of visitors in the summer maybe puts some strain on their capacity and maybe they have to rush batches a bit more but while I loved it in May it seemed just kind of meh in July. In fairness Thuisbrunn is a touch act to follow IMO.
The hike from Hoffman to Grafenberg was interesting in that we split off in to two groups for some reason and my group (unfortunately following my lead) got a bit lost and added an extra 1-2km distance to the hike. Honestly I found the signs for 5 Seidla Steig not as clear as I expected compared to other hikes I've done in Franken. Anyhow, experience is the best teacher and sometimes you learn more about an area by getting lost in it than otherwise. So as it turns out we only fell about 3/4 of a Seidla behind.
Lindenbrau was good as usual and I think we actually had one seidla from the barrel and one from keg (as I recall) and the one from the barrel was noticeably better we all agreed. I was pondering this morning as I thought back on this trip that Grafenberg would be a nice place to stay for a night or two or three on a future trip because there is actually plenty around there to interest the beer lover. Granted it's not the nightlife of Bamberg but I really could see staying at Lindenbrau for a short stay. Anyhow that's a side note.
Friedman was our last stop. We had barely enough time to get up to the keller for a couple of beers and a bit to eat. Those that have been there know it is a really nice keller with a great view. The beer was also good. We did stop quickly at the pub on the way down towards the station. I have to say the Friedman beers were better than I expected. I've always heard that it was average at best (compared to Lindenbrau) but I disagree with that assesement. I think Friedman is well worth the stop both for the keller, the beer, and the brewpub.
We bought a few bottles to take with us for the journey home and that journey consisted of ..... actually I'm a bit foggy on this. We took a train from Grafenberg to somewhere and then a bus to Erlangen station. Maybe Jason can fill in the exact details. But finally a train ride back to Bamberg from Erlangen. I know this is a bit different than what I thought was the usual route through Nurnberg. I guess we saved some time this way? Next time I think I'll just stay a night or three in Grafenberg and just catch the bus back to Forchheim during the day.
In conclusion, a very worthwhile excursion that includes 5 breweries (all of which I enjoyed) and nice scenery to boot.
Complements to Mark for an excellent informative post. Well done.
Thanks. More to come. I've been busy since I've gotten back and I'm now over the post-Franconia depression phase so I can talk about it again.
And by post-Franconia depression phase I basically mean the depression and shock of returning to reality after yet another wonderful visit to may favorite place in the world.
I can see a book coming... Mark’s Top 10 50 best Franconian beers!
You’re memory served you well! We took a train to Eschenau then bus to Erlangen (where the driver scolded us for having open bottles- deplorable- and we all sat quiet as nice for the journey) and then the train to Bamberg. It saved us going into Nuremberg and probably around 45mins as the connections were good. If it’s more than the time it takes to drink a seidla I’m all for some public transport adventure!
Also agree with the beer. Hoffmann was definitely on form in May. The extra stall outside in the garden tells it’s own story.
As a more than willing participant, I concur with all of this. Friedmann was a great surprise after the reports. The view from the Keller is breathtaking and, when it rained, the people there went to a lot of trouble to make sure we stayed dry. Amazing to meet a chap who had spent a considerable time in Kirkaldy!
We managed to locate the rest of the party in the Friedmann stube, we had a quickish beer, which was excellent; in fact, I actually preferred their beers to Lindenbraeu, though the one vom Fass in Linden was pretty decent. It's a bit of a trot from Friedmann to the station and, somehow, we managed to lose Ronnie enroute. However, he managed to make the train ok!
Sounds like a cracking trip chaps, though a trifle too energetic for me I fear. But Its good to experience it vicariously,so keep posting!
I took a trip out last Saturday to visit Regensburg and Laaber, with a plan to visit Proeslbraeu in Adlersberg. Also stopped in Neumarkt for a swift one in Gansbraue. Laaber was very pleasant but Kneitinger in Regensburg wasn't as good as I remember. Nothing wrong, maybe I just expected too much. I went into the craft beer shop near the bridge and left without buying anything and went into the getraenkemarkt down the road and left with a full rucksack. Kloster Mallersdorf, Proesslbraue and other local breweries make this a must visit and even if the beers can't be taken home all are refridgerated for immediate consumption.
I decided to save Proesslbraue for another time and went to Fuchsbeck in Suzbach Rosenberg as previous visits had impressed. It's a traditional tap in what is a very attractive small town with 2 breweries (Sperber is a little more modern and foody but OK). I must say I think their Helles is one of the finest beers in the region and at just 4.5% also extremely drinkable.
Given how close it is to Amberg (4 breweries), it comes throughly recommended as a day trip with the train.
Great stuff, Jason, think that might alraedy be a plan for next year.
The Metzgerei Liebold is closed until 14th August. If you are in the habit of taking a Leberkäsebrötchen into Schlenkerla for breakfast, you need to make other arrangements.
Right, I am travelling from Hirschaid to Regensburg and it turns out the Bayern-Ticket is the cheapest ticket in any event.
Obviously there is enough at each end and en route to keep me busy (especially as I have never been to Regensburg before) but it seems like an opportunity to fit in a short detour to another destination at zero additional cost, as I can theoretically go anywhere in Bayern that I can get to on local trains.
It has been a number of years since I've been, but Amberg had some nice breweries.
I don't know how much time you'll have in the Regensburg area, but I would promote Kelheim for beer and sites over Regensburg.
I (we) were not overly impressed with Regensburg as a tourist or beer destination.
If you stay there, Kneitinger has a nice restaurant, and if you ask nicely at the gift shop across the alley, you may get an impromptu tour. Beer is OK.
Spitalbrauerei has a nice biergarten, beer is OK. If you're into glassware, I recall they had a unique glass available in their gift shop.
Fine cathedral is the main draw for tourists; ask at tourist info for accomodation.
I think that's about it for Regensburg.
Alternately, Kelheim, 25 km away:
Schneider Weisse Brauerei: one of the very best wheat beers. Very nice place. Usually friendly.
Nice pub and rooms at Gasthof Bertzl.
Wonderful boat ride up the Danube to Weltenberg Abby/Brauerei. Excellent beer, magnificent (small) cathedral, nice beer garden.
Nice pub Brauerei Frischeisen, we enjoyed the beers, but it was a while ago.
Befreiungshalle: Enormous beautiful monument at the top of a hill. You can walk (if you're in shape), or (I think) take the bus.
Organ museum: in an old church at the base of the hill; many old pipe organs on display, and the attendent will probably play a couple for you (if it's still open).
Nice town to walk around in.
Surely Kelheim is close enough to visit from a Kelheim base?
Definitely somewhere not to miss.
And yes, Schneider is an all time classic.
In Munich with the Schneider and Tegernseer pubs opposite each other, not much reason to leave Tal.
If you do go to Kelheim try to put Schneider in Essing on the list. Really nice place and beer and I believe can be reached from Kelheim by a short boat ride up the river.
Don't confuse the Essing Schneider with the Kelheim Schneider; two different outfits.
We stayed in Essing once, and I didn't know the difference.
Also in Essing, the Tazelwurm, a few years ago it was billed as "the world's longest wooden pedestrian bridge". We were back in Essing in 2018, but it seemed kind of depressed. The nice hotel we stayed in was closed, undergoing reconstruction. It's a very small town.
If you want to see a (17mb!) pano of the bridge, click here.
The picture is 10 years old so so and the path straight ahead is the Fünf Flüsse Radweg. The bridge is a bit outside of Essing proper (you can kind of see it up the hill in the upper left background).
BTW, I think Barm was just looking for places where he could hop off a train and have a beer since the Bayern ticket is good all day. Amberg has direct trains from Nürnberg and to Regensburg -- and the train station (IIRC) is not far from the Altstadt and a couple of the breweries. I am hazy on that as I've only been on Amberg by bicycle
I thought about Kelheim but does it have a railway station?
No train; closest station (end of the line, I think) is Saal on Donau.
You can get a bus from there, or from Regensburg, or maybe from Nuremburg.
I'm sure you know how to check Deutsche Bahn for routing.
Auch Winkler Brau, Lengenfeld.... Kupfer bier
Well, I ended up stopping off in Amberg as Fred suggested. Nice enough for a couple of hours. Beer at Schloderer-Bräu was poor to mediocre, Kummert was much better and the beer hall lovely.
I think Regensburg is definitely worth at least one overnight. I should have gone to Spital instead of the Weissbierhaus (clearly formerly a Brauhaus Joh. Albrecht) where I did go. Kneitinger was as brilliant as expected. I arrived too late and left too early to get much of a chance to make the acquaintance of the Bischofshof beers. I hadn't realised they brew a lot of the Weltenburger Kloster stuff.
They also brew an ersatz Zoigl. No further comment needed.
I visited Bischofshof brewery tap a few years and wasn't madly impressed with the beers. Quite bland, commercial suit all tastes type of stuff, IMHO. However, the garden was pleasant and the weather delightful. Most interestingly, they were filming or photographing a commercial for their beers that involved a female model (looking like a typical beer drinker!) walking across the garden holding a Seidla of beer. But, no matter what they did, they couldn't get the head (Schaum) to remain for long enough to take a shot! Might say something about the beer. I think that I've got a photo of it somewhere but not sure where!
All the beers without the word “Kloster” on the label are brewed by Bischofshof. It’s a poor brewery that doesn’t warrant a visit. Schloderer is little better than home brew, Bruckmüller is the best of the center breweries.
For it’s size and University, Regensburg isn’t really that interesting. It’s unfair to compare with Bamberg, but with over double the population I would expect more. Beer aside it is a very interesting and historical city and looks much better now they’ve eventually finished the bridge repairs.
There are a lot of interesting breweries around that can be accessed by public transport though.
Careful, Jason !
I've been a homebrewer for 30 years, and can make beer as good or better than any commercial brewery!
I know other homebrewers around that also produce great beers.
True, it’s a turn of phrase. At least in the British vernacular.
As in from a Boots kit.
Understandable turn of phrase. I was a member of a local homebrew club for a few years before I just got fed up with the nonsense. Mostly shite beer and all the BJCP nonsense. I swear a good number of the people there only attended because they just wanted a place to hangout and really weren't all that into brewing.
But there were two or three home brewers in the rough that really knew WTF they were doing. Naturally I was one of them :)
Laaber, for Brauerei Plank. Maybe Kloster Mallersdorf. Also: Amberg (5 breweries) plus maybe Sulzbach-Rosenberg (2).
Is Amberg worth a day trip? Anything to see? Its on the VGN network so cheap enough to reach.
Definitely. Old town is very nice, city wall and various old buildings and churches. A lot less touristy than Bamberg. The railway station is 50 metres from the old town. And some nice breweries.
Thanks Jan, I may give it a go next time.
Booked myself into Brauerei Kraus for a couple of nights. Anyone stayed there, is it nice?
I know some people are not fans of their beer, that's not what I'm asking.
Hello Barm, Ihave stayed there several times. and in fact it is now my first choice.comfortable accommadation, decent food, friendly locals (mostly),close to the main train line, and GOOD! beer.( cant understand the whining about the beer I find it perfectly acceptable).
so whats not to like! Hope you have a nice stay.
I made a reservation for Kraus several years ago. Showed up to check in and was informed there was no room available. Instead I was sent to the "Drive Inn". I understand being full but I won't try to stay here again.
When I "guided" the tour bus/coachload of Nebraskans there years ago, the same thing happened. Quite a few rooms were "not available" and so people had to traipse off to a motel a km or so away.
By that time, the driver had settled into a beer, and so couldn't drive them over. The morbidly obese lady of the house called for a taxi van, who showed up. I went along (I forget why, I wasn't going to stay there with the group, being that I lived in Erlangen, AKA the City That Won't Be Named Openly) and the driver wanted to charge 5 EUR per person for the pleasure of being driven a km or so. I told her that was a shameless ripoff, and should only get 1 EUR per person.
One older Nebraskan complained of sewer gas in his room.
Kraus come across as a bit full of themselves...don't miss it much. Captive market and all that. Somebody should open up some competition in Hirschaid for them.
Strange, I have never had any trouble. A lot of the overnight trade is from men working away from home who, like myself, book well in advance. And e- mail them direct via their website.
So as they say, " If you dont like it dont go back"
Well, I did end up staying here for two nights and I have no real complaints. My room was perfectly decent, it is very near the station and the price was right. I thought the Wurst on offer at breakfast could have been more impressive considering they have their own sausage kitchen, but breakfast was perfectly OK and didn't cost any extra. I could leave my rental bike in the beer garden overnight (in a hotel in NL I saw someone had parked their bike in the corrider outside their room!). It is also very nice to sit out in a beer garden late at night and know your bed is only a flight of stairs away.
When I arrived it was scorching weather and the restaurant was closed with only the beer garden open. I guess if you understood no German at all and didn’t get how things work in rural Bavaria you might be alarmed or put off by this. I just asked at the same hatch where people were queueing for beer and was immediately handed my room key. Very relaxed, considering some places still make you fill out a form with your passport number.
I also asked if I could see the brewery and was turned down because it was summer and they were so busy. Which is fair enough, I wouldn't want strangers looking over my shoulder at work either.
Would stay here again.
I should clarify the group of Nebraskans was not small. Over 20, I think.
I always liked Kraus, after that episode as well. Beer wasn't my favourite, but then I like Koelsch & Courage cask!
So file this under “it’s a small world” but as we were enjoying our first beer today, Neder btw and it’s very good, we randomly met Joris from Lithuania who posted recently on this forum asking about Annafest. The power of beer and the internet at work again. Nice to meet you Joris!
Ronnie got interviewed by BR Fernsehen yesterday evening.
Wow! Ronnie media star, well done, there'll be no holding you now!
Ah Barry,he may not cast you aside now that he is a media star,and still might wish you to hold him. tee hee.
Wow! Ronnie media star, well done, there'll be no holding you now!
That is brilliant!!!!
What a a great day we had there today. It was tough herding the cars and getting them all to the Bahnhof at 10 pm but well worth the effort.
Cats I mean.
Yea! I reckon we got that lol! sounds a great trip.
I like those two guys behind the correspondent at the beginning of the video: already staggering drunk during daylight.
I never met Ronnie, but good job, sir.
So ... any reports?
There was still some Annafest paraphernalia about when I was in the (quiet!) Kellerwald last week. I did not realise that they double the price of Bier when the fest is on!
It was great. As always.
There are so many here but little comment, maybe because we have exhausted novel things to say? Ok, so tonight I and Marks party went to Canalisimo, the scene of probably the first ever attempt to organise a group from the Forum to meet up? To be honest, I got pretty hopelessly inebriated, so much so that Jacqueline said never again! So I defied orders but was it worth it? Really, no. My nemory, which is probably skewed by time and alcohol, was of a pleasant local beer fest. However,Canalisimo is now a 'cultural event'. I'm not sure whose or what culture because the only thing vaguely cultural were a couple of rocks (didn't impress my younger and more knowledgeable companions). Otherwise, it was a typical German strassenfest, lots of food, lots of people promenading, a few beer places. Beer content: nice Seidlas from Fischer Greuth and Zehendner. Finished off with a couple 9f pils in Faessla. Excellent.
So many here and none of them are on this forum other you and I. I haven’t been posting while here because of lack of time and don’t really like typing a lot on my iPhone.
Canallisimo is pretty much what what it was back then. Main difference is now there is a 3 euro entrance fee and no Metzgerbrau. Otherwise I see no difference.
Anyhow we’re off to Annafest today.
It hasn’t changed as you say Mark. Remember these things aren’t put on for tourists, and much of the fun is about meeting people you don’t always see and meeting friends.
Street fest/canal fest/Bier fest - they’re all the same, beer, food, music and people. I’m not sure what more is expected. If it’s not your thing, avoid them.
Same: too busy biking or enjoying the keller
Mursbach, schroll, Karin, Kemmern kellers, Dorfleins yesterday.
Note: Br. Endres was way off, our only dumper of the day.
Fischer Greuth brews no more. There were some rumours about it already, I got that confirmed 2 weeks ago from one lady who lives in Greuth. AFAIK now they getting "their" beer brewed in Rittmayer.
The Seidla that I had at Canalisimo was ok, nothing great but nothing bad. Just a bit too sweet for my taste. Hummer in Breitengussbach sell Eittmayer beers but I can't really much about the Seidla u had some days ago, which probably says something about it.
Fischer in Greuth uses contract brewing at Rittmayer in Hallerndorr since 2018. Mr. Fischer has talked with me at Canalissimo 2918. But they use the old. own receipt of Fischer.
I have not posted much because my visits to Germany are fewer due to lack of funds. Reading about all these beer activities is less enticing if you can't join in.
Well hopefully things turn around and you’ll be back here soon. You are well thought of and missed in Franken. This year I’ve told stories of past Annafests that I was at with you. A lot of good times
Yes, I love Annafest. If I had my way, I would go every other year, and this should have been one of those years. It is ironic that I have all the time in the world sitting at home, but no money to go. Well, next year or the year after, I hope...
Are you not working these days Jim, ? Me neither. Have to fix that.
Big changes coming, and I'm not one that deals with change well. Imma move back to the US, maybe within 2 months. Mrs is likely going to follow me.
But...where? And to do what? I was a mfg engineer -cum- application developer (back when "application" didn't mean something on your phone) in my previous, pre-German life, then English "teacher" part-time in Erlangen for a good 8 years or so.
I don't want to go back to programming, nor would it be very easy, having been out of it for 15 years. Or...would it, Fred? My last gig was doing VisualBasic (and Borland C++) user interfaces to Oracle and MS databases to track automated and manually-entered production data. Maybe there's legacy support work to be done that I could pick up?
Although I cooked and washed dishes in high school and college, I never waited tables. That actually has its appeal now: dealing with people rather than computers, being up and on my feet rather than sitting (developed psiatica whilst programming), earing tips. Should be theoretically easy to find work.
Texas? Lived in Houston as a kid for a couple of years when Dad was getting post-doctoral training in medical physics, after having been let go at NASA in New Orleans, when Nixon cut the budget for the research he was working on (effects of zero gravity on bone density or some such rocket science). Houston was where I had about the most fun as a kid, I guess, after New Orleans. I'd lived in KS, PA, LA, TX, and MN by the age of 9, so moved around a lot. Not an army brat, but a physics brat.
NOLA would be interesting, but too humid. I want near-desert conditions, and so I'm thinking of west Texas. A small city rather than a big one.
ARE THERE ANY TEXANS ON HERE? If so, suggest a city to consider! I have great memories of childhood fun in San Antonio when we visited my aunt & uncle there, but they're long gone and I have no relatives there. A dream would be to open a TX BBQ place, or a butcher's. (Sorry veggies--health comes first!)
Another issue is my 2001 Toyota Sequoia, which I stupidly imported when I returned here in November. It is STILL in limbo because of the headlights. I am sorely tempted to just eat the loss and ship it back for $3-4k and get it registered in the US again. Its Nevada registration will have expired by the time I get around to shipping it, I fear.
AFA beer goes, I'm averaging about 2 US pints or less a day now (80 cl) of Koelsch and Bitburger. Sorry about that. I would actually go sober entirely, but don't have much to do with my time, nor people to do it with. I've gotten into the habit of spending too much time down the pub in the evening.
I miss Erlangen. Ah well, I miss lots of things.
ARE THERE ANY TEXANS ON HERE? If so, suggest a city to consider! I have great memories of childhood fun in San Antonio when we visited my aunt & uncle there, but they're long gone and I have no relatives there. A dream would be to open a TX BBQ place, or a butcher's. (Sorry veggies--health comes first!)
Sorry, I meant more west, desert-ish Texas. Even El Paso. Never been there, seems quite small. Safe though?
I think that I'm probably the only livinig vegetarian on this Forum - certainly the only one that I've met face to face. I'll take your apology as read!
You know, in all our many conversations on the meaning of life, etc., I never imagined that you'd move back to the U.S. (and certainly not with Becky! Does that mean you'll become a two-dog family?). What happened to dreams of Thanet? I suppose that's all tied in with Adidas and Brexit, etc. It's funny, in all our conversations, these were never concepts that came up. Just shows you that you can't predict the future.
Do you miss Erlangen or Franken? Putting the beer aspect to one side (as if that was possible!), Franken still seems to me to be nice place to live for many reasons, as does Prague, apart from, in each case, the cold winters! With what I know now, I wish that I'd bought an apartment in Prague a few years ago when they were really cheap. But they're not any more.
One of Mark's friends who accompanied him in the recent trip to Bamberg lived in Albuquerque for a while, didn't sound too attractive; many years ago, I had a friend who lived in Austin, said that it was great for music (also with a big historic Irish population) but I don't know if it's still good for music.
Anyway, good luck on whatever you decide.
Well I guess its a "to each his own" type of thing. I personally would not want to live in those hot, dry Southwest US places whether that's El Paso, TX, Albuquerque, Phoenix, etc. For me there are three places in the US I'd live and I'm in one of them already. New England, Colorado/Wyoming (i.e. Rocky Mtns), or Pacific Northwest (Portland, Seattle, etc.). But I Iike the cooler climates and mountains so there it is. Plus those are some of the best beer regions in the US IMO (no offense to San Diego or upper midwest)
Austin is still a good city for music. The city has grown tremendously over the past couple of decades (I first went there in the 90's) but I still personally think it would be my favorite city to visit in TX. It's not the near desert like conditions that Nick is looking for though. Austin can be very humid.
Thanks both of youse for the details. I loved the Nevada desert, and it was supposedly unusually humid last summer, so I guess I experienced the worst of it. We (dog and I) didn't get bitten by the monsterous black widows we encountered, which helped! Never saw a live scorpion, nor a snake either.
Austin sounds too hip and cool. And too large. Music...I did pick up bass playing before I left Erlangen, and did intend to get back into it after 20 or so years out of it, but got distracted by other stuff going on. Suburban Dallas FW might be an option, at least for a start.
Am now thinking pretty seriously about Florida. My crazy sister is there in Gainesville, but if I'm going to live in FL, it's gonna be on the coast. And things didn't work out so well last time I saw my sister, so...anyway.
Oregon was a great place for Becki & me for 11 years, but revisiting it after a decade away in 2015...NO WAY would I consider Portland again. The Urban Growth Boundary is a two-edged sword.
A few nights in Corvallis were very nice, though bittersweet. It didn't seem to have changed too much, and benefitted from HP's huge presence having shrunk after my departure in 1997. Bittersweet, because moving and living there for a year or so was probably the high point of my adult life, when I really had my act together. Moved across country for a job I would never have thought I could get, WITHOUT any help from acquaintences, just my own interviewing and engineering experience, even without a proper engineering degree. (BS Manufacturing Tech, 1989, St. Cloud State U, aka "Discount State")
And Becki gave up HER career path in Mpls to follow me there! That was the real high point.
The grey, wet winter would be a challenge now, though a non-issue in Central or Eastern Oregon's High Desert. Something putting B & I off the idea of returning is the impending 9.0 Megaquake too. It will happen, and when it does...a million or so armed people without water, sewage, or electricity for months on end. National emergency to make Hurricane Katrina look like a party.
"Portland [OR] and Seattle are America's beer capitols." -- Michael Jackson, for whom I stewarded a couple of times at homebrew comp's and drank & bantered with at a couple of other shindigs.
Is Juergen no longer around? Anyway, Becki quit adidas in Nov 2017, whilst I was visiting you in Wales.
Yeah, things have changed. We're splitting (slowly, it's years in the making) and our life here was a life for the two of us. We would never have ended up here if we hadn't been together. And so the idea was to return to the US. It was returning from my road trip through your funny little isles that really precipitated our decision to split, so it wasn't something we would have talked about when last we met.
That's why I stayed in LV a while -- it seemed a great place to return to, at first. I was really going to start up a business, and B was seriously thinking about moving there herself. Then things went unexpectedly wrong. Ah well, expensive life lessons and all that.
I've got an issue with my unlimited residency permit that may be cleared up next week, but worst case is I'll need to leave the EU for 3 months. In that case, I doubt I'll return. I'm not going to spend 3 months in Switzerland! (Those who don't like me can go ahead and gloat...just do like Fred says and be nice to each other!)
If Brexit happened now, maybe I could spend the three months in Thanet. Yes, that's still a dream of mine, though the way things are heading in your culture...more American as time goes on, I dunno. At least you're not armed to the teeth!
I miss lots of things about Erlangen (sorry for mentioning its unholy name again), in comparison to living in Aachen. I miss lots of other things. Mostly, that I didn't cherish my old life as much as I should have. That I didn't WORK more (not just teaching English, but housework, and work at our relationship) and drink less. That I wasn't LESS self-centered. That I didn't go ahead and get German citizenship. Without B's job (she's been non-employed since leaving adidas) and income, they won't go for it. Though I could get unemployment benefits...Germany's weird.
And that's another thing. We are still foreigners here. It is not our culture, and this does make a difference, as I first learnt from an ex-homebrewing-friend (lectures PolySci at Plymouth, David Brockington, PhD) when he moved from Seattle to Amsterdam, and who was my original inspiration in suggesting that B&I move to Europe from Orygun. As my German teacher said, who's my age, making real friends gets harder with age.
We moved here at 42 & 39. We have loads of acquaintences, but real *friends*? Are your pub mates real friends? Germans have a slightly different idea about friendship vs. acquaintenceship than Yanks do. A "friend" would let you move in with them in hardship. My old Mpls friends of my youth would likely have done that, in fact I did live with a couple for a while when things were slow-going.
So on that note...hey Mark, can I move in with you for a bit this fall to get my Sequoia registered? :) I can pay rent. I can get along with M@ssholes. New Yorkers, meh.
Barring that, how about a road trip south with Uncle Jimbo, me, and my dog, if I land at Boston? I'll be the driver, as I've gone sober again.
I kind of agree with you on the "foreigners" thing. You need some luck. Being younger (crucially in that I still play football), I have met some of my best friends in Bamberg. Unfortunately one was a student and has since left (we still meet) and the other a mad Slovenien. I have also good friends in Robert, Ursl and Frank and a lot of aquaintances around Bamberg, plus my football friends (having been part of 3 clubs since being here means I'm often hollered at when out and about. It's always nice to be recognised, but it doesn't mean you're best mates. It requires effort though, and especially in my early Bamberg days I was out a lot, and I think I looked like someone who needed a chat, so people obliged. Now my language skills are greatly improved and I'm established, people don't tend to 'bother' me any more. I miss that a little, but it's clearly an aura one gives off of needing human contact. Littlle things are also beneficial, like picking up the accent, learning schafkopf and knowing more about their beer scene than they do, it all helps :)
So the friend side I have covered, but the cultural differences remain, and will always remain, I think. My girlfriend (also British, has lived in the Germanic countries for 10 years) and I will often talk about how 'German' the Germans really are. Most observations are very small and not really something occasional visitors will notice. One of the biggest is their sense of self righteousness. We feel like we are constantly doing something wrong in some way and that some 'do gooder' is going to start wagging a finger. Just parking my car is a chore, looking for various signs saying that something on some day isn't allowed. That sense of 'order' is not just a cliché, and it has it's benefits, but the downsides are extremely frustrating, especially for a couple of Liberal Brits. I just tell people to mind their own business now, but you're constantly looking over your shoulder.
Germans can also be incredibly rude sometimes, and I really miss that softer approach the British have - if they have to mention something they are polite and discreet. In Spezi the other day my girlfriend politely asked at another table if she could take the ashtray and some old Franconian answered "na klar" in his sarcastic way - it's not clear, maybe you're using it, she's being polite and you're just being an arsehole. Again, a year ago I would have let it go, but it wears you down so much, this time I gave him a piece of my mind. I will also not tolerate bad tempered and rude service any more, and it's amazing how much they soften when you give it them back.
I'm not 'complaining' about life here; my girlfrirend and I love it, and she's moving to Bamberg in January. It's just these differences are bigger than they may seem at first. We were in Britain in April and were almost shocked at how friendly everyone was in everyday situations... there's no right or wrong, just different. And the Brits have their faults too of course.
It's what makes living in a 'foreign' culture such a rich and rewarding experience, if sometimes frustrating.
GERMANS ARE GERMAN SHOCKER!!!
Sorry, couldn't resist. I know exactly what you mean and empathise. Franconians enjoy a reputation as being especially ...reserved, I guess... among the rest of the population, or so I've always heard.
Now that you bring it up, Aachener(s) (dialect: Oechner?) are more warmly friendly, at least the way I see them around here.
83 YO lady who I see walking her dog all the time just opened up and told me about how she and her sister were evacuated to Schlesia in 42, then brought back, only to be evacuated again, to Czechia, from where they walked back after the war, sometimes stepping over dead bodies. Her dad had hidden a Jewish person in their house through the entire war.
Hmmm...did I post about that already here and forget it? Anyway, not that it has to do with anything, other than these people seem more outgoing than die Franken.
I got especially isolated in that I wasn't working at all in my last couple of years, first because B took a sabbatical and we travelled a lot, then because I wasn't sure we were going to stay and I didn't want to take on any new pupils. And laziness.
Nice to hear of your evolution in the time you've had here...there.
Where is she living now, if she's moving to Bamberg? Don't say 3rl@ngen.
I don’t know about Franconians being any different to be honest. Maybe when comparing with Northern Germans, but then I haven’t lived there (and wouldn’t, personal preference). There are lots of different ‘Germans’ at work, and they aren’t especially outgoing either. But I don’t mind that. I don’t need people to be overtly friendly, a just don’t need them to be unfriendly.
She lives in Neu-Ulm. Obviously I’ve spent quite a bit of time there recently. Meh. Some nice areas, some not so nice (obviously Ulm is the bigger half). It’s a good job she’s a midwife and can move, nothing could persuade me to move from Bamberg or my job. It’s not being selfish, it’s just it’s a place I feel at home, and those sort of places should be cherished. Plus the standard of living is high. And the region is beautiful. Blah blah.
Yeah 17 million of them have some big faults.
But not sure about the rest of it. Of course, wherever you live that's not where you were born/brought up, you're always an incomer. I've lived in a lot of different places in Britain (Manchester,of course, London, Leeds, Bath, Bristol and now Wales, which, believe me, is a 'foreign country', although 50% of the local population are from England!) and Ireland for 15 years. And, believe me, Ireland is really a foreign country. But, I don't try to be a local but to fit in with local customs and engage.
We sometimes get seduced into believing that. because there is a 'lingua franca' that links countries, that, culturally and socially, they are the same or similar. But it's not true. We wnt on holiday to the U.S.A. and, then, later, I took Jacqueline with me on one of my work trips to Romania. Afterwards, I asked her about her opinions of the latter visit and she said that she liked it more than the U.S.A. because she felt more at home there, even though she had no idea of the language!
We had a long discussion in the pub the other night - I maintained that there is a congruity of European culture that transcends language and links European countries and which is quite different to that of the U.S.A. To be fair, there was no great agreement on the matter. I've got a lot of friends from the U.S.A., whose company I greatly value, but would I like to live in their country, I don't think so. would I like to live in Germany, yes, I couldmanage that ok. Or Prague!
Moving to another country is what you make it: I met people who had moved from the UK to Ireland and couldn't settle, whereas I didn't find it difficult at all. But, then, I'd had a lot of preparation in 25 years of visits and being deeply involved in Irish culture. I don't find any problems when I'm in Germany: people are generally hopsitable and friendly, if not gushing. I can't begin to remember the number of times that people have offered help in all sorts of situation and also have talked to me in pubs - my only regret is that I've never been able to master enough German to fully engage. I think that it depends on your attitude to other people; I try not to pre-judge people on appearances and I'm always happy to chat (too happy according to some of my friends).
Anyway, be back in both Germany and Czechia in less than 3 weeks and happy to be there again!
Nice musings Barry, but I'm not really sure I get your point(s). I for one do not believe that the cultures of the UK, Australia, Canada or the USA are interlinked. I'm sure some of the US residents here would call out the differences between Cities, Counties and States as being numerous, nevermind the whole country - lumping it together when you have barely been there, nevermind traversed it's length and bredth, is a little loose, as far as an opinion goes.
In the same way, your experiences of 'visiting' (key, key word) other countries/cities such as Germany and Prague are not indicative of actually moving your life there, nor is comparing to moving to Ireland or Wales, though I completely accept it could be more challenging than one might think. In fact it shows a total misunderstanding of the importance of language and deep human contact, especially at a relatively young age. For one, you wouldn't be able to have such a conversation that you had in your local the other day here. It's different coming to franken for 10 days and muddling through, knowing you'll be going home to your 'local' after. The fact that you combine your visits with other visitors is understandable, but also shows how important it is to have that companionship - you're rarely on your own here. People speak to you in these villages and in Bamberg, maybe in English, because you're exoctic at that time. I had that too. But then they stop, because you aren't exotic anymore when you live here and speaking in a foreign language is tiring, frustrating and only goes so far (even if they're good). So you'll be left alone.
Essentially, you dismissed the opinions of 3 people who live in Germany and have a combined first hand experience of, what, over 30 years? On the basis that you holiday here occasionally (key word not being occasionally, but holiday). I holidayed here as well, and I found everyone very friendly, and I still do, to a point. But after a time, you start to notice things. You haven't - does that mean they aren't there? Most things that happen around you on holiday are lost - it doesn't slap you in the face, it's subtle, that's why it takes time for these things to reveal. Just saying "I can live there" is not the same as actually living there, believe it or not. It's not a worthless statement, I like Prague too, but I don't overestimate that thought as being the same thing.
I'm sorry if my opinions are strong, but to be honest your dismissal of people's first hand experiences is irritating.
I've travelled a bit in Europe and the British Isles (we try to stay out of big cities).
My impression of the countries is based on "do they think like me".
I've thought I could determine that by many conversations in English and German.
So far, I've felt the Irish and Germans (particularly Bavarians) think like me, and British (including Scots), Italians, French, Austrians, Scandinavians, Benelux, have a "different thought process". Czechs are in-between, probably closer to Bavarians.
It's not that anyone is right or wrong, but how "at home" I feel.
I'm from North-Central USA (North Dakota), and probably people from other parts of the USA would have different impressions.
The majority of immigrants in this area were German, followed by Scandinavian.
I understand the "exotic" statement in Jason's post, but I have made friends in Europe I will visit again, and who have visited me in the USA.
I'm also perhaps unusual as an American in that I lived in Kansas, Pennsylvania, New Orleans, Houston TX, and then suburban Minneapolis by the age of 9. Whereas most people (I think) tend live in one place from childhood on through young adulthood, I had to make friends and be the outsider (get picked on) over and over again. Poor me.
My family heritage is Minnesotan, which is decidedly Germanic/Irish/Scandinavian and not all that different to North Dakotan. And yes, my first visits to England after we'd been living in Germany for a year or two found me feeling more like a foreigner there than in Germany.
The one huge glaring difference is queueing up. The British approach is much more American, I think. Germans are surprisingly bad at it, like when a second register opens up in the supermarket -- people from the back of the line at the one will run to get to the front of the newly opened one. Chaos when boarding the bus, etc. The Briton will form a queue of one, or something, right?
Anyway...I"m looking at a return to Britain for a while at the end of September before returning to the US. Anyone have any tips on finding REALLY cheap accommodation or car hire? Camper van hire? I'm toying with the idea of travelling around in a van with doggy, bathing in the sea rather than showering, all that sort of thing. Rugged. Grilling outdoors or cooking on the stove in the van rather than pub grub.
Any tips would be welcome!
Will be interesting to see if I stay off the beer there. It's not an issue in Aachen now.
Actually, they have Bitburger alc-free vom Fass (keg, not Holzfass!) at the local tavern. It's surprisingly...drinkable.
Wild camping is legal almost everywhere in Scotland but not in England. Weather will be getting a bit chilly for sea bathing by the end of September though, but if you're intent on being Bear Grylls go ahead.
Been doing the "cold shower" thing currently making the rounds in health & fitness circles, so it might not be so bad. Does it really get you clean though, is the question. Get a cheap room every few days to shower properly could also work.
As I'm off beer/alcohol and fibrous foodstuffs, the issue of terlet usage isn't as critical as it used to be.
Barry has said privately that wild camping (new term to me, but then Mrs & I have only done "Luxuscamping" as they call it down here, in a massive Buerstner Wohnmobil a couple of times) is illegal in England, but that I should just park on a city street. Does that mean wild camping within a township is OK?
I know that one can get permission from a property owner (like, a publican) to use their property.
Either way, I'm not really worried. British cops, compared to where I'm from...tender, delicate flowers, they are. Don't want to rack up expensive tickets though.
People speak to you in these villages and in Bamberg, maybe in English, because you're exoctic at that time. I had that too. But then they stop, because you aren't exotic anymore when you live here and speaking in a foreign language is tiring, frustrating and only goes so far (even if they're good). So you'll be left alone.
It's interesting that you mention that. I have visited Bamberg pretty much every year since 2003. I still see some of the same local faces in the brewery pubs as I did 15 years ago, but when I first visited, many of them would go out of their way to talk to me, but now I am lucky to get a nod. I am not complaining. This is natural, and I am not comparing my frequent visits to actually living there, but I can see how it goes.
It could well be because, even just 16 years ago, foreign visitors were rare. Beer has taken off worldwide to such an extent that beer tourism is a ‘thing’, even in these far flung villages. Who knows, there are many factors.
I think the main point is that what I shared was my experience, parts of which were backed up by Nick and my girlfriend. They aren’t empirical, but they also are not up for debate. It’s not about being right or wrong, nor am I saying that because I live here I know better than anyone else, definitely not. It’s just that I’ve been a tourist here, so I try to see both sides.
Ive just got home from having another bike stolen in bamberg. It was cheap (and locked) but it disappeared none the less. There’s an experience you’re unlikely to have as a tourist, but it still happens.
Just move back to Franconia. Do you have EU citizenship?
Getting hired in the US is extemely difficult if you are over 45, and gets harder each year above that age. Of course, I am speaking of well-paying professional jobs. Your mileage may vary if you are just looking for a job in the service industry.
Nah, no EU citizenship. Should have done that when I was thinking about it years ago, but the $2350 US citizenship renunciation fee (Frau Merkel doesn't generally allow dual citizenship with non-Turks and non-EU-nationals) was a bit steep.
Getting a job in Germany over 50, forget it. I'm not worried about getting work in the US. I could be a garbage collector.
I'm a bit confused. Our party were planning to go to Staffelstein on Sunday. But I've looked at the website and this weekend seems to be a general town festival with usual stalls, concerts, etc. The annual beer festival is in a couple of weeks? Anyone confirm?
It's the Altstadtfest this weekend, nothing to do with the beerfest on the Mariahimmelfahrt holiday. There will be medieval themed events and I'm sure there will be a few beer stalls, but there's no guarentee of interesting selections. Pretty sure Mark was aware of this.
Yeah I was aware that it was not specifically a Bier fest and have looked into it further and found there a limited selection there. Metzgerbrau is one of them. We will weigh options
Quick update on opening times , just cycled past and new sign states Friday to Sunday only from 16.00 in brauerei leicht . I was a bit gutted coming back from Coburg but reblitz needensdorf is on fine form.
Just waiting a bit of time while rest of your party arrive from Roppelt. Couple of Seidlas in Neder, Fassbier excellent, specially sitting in sunshine outside. Witzgall Vollbier lovely , auch.
17.08 - 3.09 inclusive.
Thanks. Looks like I get 5 days of Amber Nectar without walking up a hill...
Think of the view!
And the inconsistant beer quality...
Never quite got this thing about "The view" mostly rooftops and a low hill in the far distance.
Oh philistine! These are the rooftops of Bamberg, not just any old place.
It's a beautful view, especially when the sun sets. And especially when 3 of the 4 major spires aren't covered in scaffolding, as they are now.
Have they all been scaffolding free at some point? lol
They have... but the Dom is likely to always have it as it takes a long time to dissemble and the towers need almost constant renovations.
Just to check out a few beer sampling dates: I really lost my overview on who's when in Franconia? Mark, Barry, Andy...
If only there was a calendar on this site so people could put their dates in.......
That's good. I'm not sure when we'll have your august company.
my August company? Well I’m off on Monday 29th to Barcelona to Saturday 3rd. On the next Friday ill have my birthday as usual with a few barrels in the Hain park. To be honest I’ll be joining where I can / want to in the next few weeks as I have to work and play football.
Don't think that's a problem. I think Mark published his schedule to allow people to drop in-drop out. Can't see me surviving for the whole show. Second Saturday is certainly a miss for me!
"I think Mark published his schedule to allow people to drop in-drop out."
Yeah pretty much. There's a lot of moving parts on this particular trip (i.e. various different friends arriving at different times) so I felt some effort to coordinate was necessary otherwise I'll be getting multiple text messages every morning asking what the hell we're doing today.
So I created a schedule, with Ronnie's help, for my own sanity if nothing else.
While I hate Facebook as a place for discussion it does have it's uses. Such as the private event page for this trip. Which, btw I will be using during the trip to keep everyone posted on things like "It's 11am and we're off to the bahnhof now. First stop Brewery/Keller (insert brewery name here)". So stayed tuned to it.
It's good. I never imagined that things would become so organised when I first mooted the idea of a meet-up (is that a word?) on this forum just a few years ago.
Cometh the hour, cometh the man!
Incidentally, I've now sorted out where to get the train and booked my ticket. As i've got two hours, is there anywhere civilised where one can buy a half decent beer? I might sample the Asia Snack Box as I'm flying into T2 but I've got to go to T1 fro train. Any suggestions, O wise ones?
I wish I knew. I've never found a bar in Frankfurt airport that I really like. Hence why I'm glad I'm flying home from Munich this time. At least there is Airbrau there.
I had a Franziskaner while waiting for a flight recently. Cost nearly EUR6.
I would just have a coffee.
€6 for a Franzikaner! Gulp - I'll make do with an Asian snack.
It's a pain - the flight departure time is nice - mid-afternoon - but I don't get in Ebensfeld until nearly 11 pm and the transit in Wuerzburg is only 7 minutes and the same in Bamberg. I could pay double for a quicker train but it only arrives an hour earlier, so not really worth paying an extra €17 for a run down to Koenigstr and a rapid beer or two. Specially as I believe there'll be no shortage of amber nectar in the next couple of weeks!
A great shame that Airbräu is land-side. The beer is not always great but is usually at least decent and sometimes very good. I have spent a lot of time waiting after security at MUC for a delayed flight with only the air-side snack bar and its uninspiring choice of beers.
There is one airside... Terminal 2. Called “next to heaven”.
Had a 12 hour delay in Seattle in 2015, returning from Portland. That was horrible in the sense of everything being ridiculously over-priced and over-done.
Then September, LV - YYZ (Toronto) - Halifax - FRA...overnight delay in Halifax due to fog. THAT is a strange place. Actually, its strangeness and 11:30 PM end of alcohol sales was a good thing in the end, gave me something to keep occupied and not get drunk.
What a great idea John! Fred would this be possible? Oh wait there is one ... and look there is actually a person that used it in July. Good on him!
Hi Juergen You may get this direct from Mark but, anyway, here's the 'rough' schedule - no doubt it will be amended as we go!
Wednesday July 17th Barry arrives (very late pm!); also I think Ronnie.
Thursday July 18th Ronnie is planning to visit to Ochsenfurt, I plan to recover from Wednesday and get ready for the onslaught.
Saturday 20th - Funf Seidla Steig (5 brewery hike) (Barry: Gulp!)
Sunday 21st - (Nedensdorf to Weisen to Pferdsfeld, Unterneuses, Ebensfeld)
Monday 22nd - Probably a day in and around Bamberg.
Tuesday 23rd - Grassmandorff, Moenchsambach, etc.
Wednesday 24th - Isa arrives (don't know when). Otherwise open
Thursday 25th - Brauerei Ulrich Martin in Hausen - later around Bamberg, maybe Dorfleins or Bischberg
Friday 26th - Mark's daughter Jess and friend Marian arrive in Bamberg. Canalissimo starts in Bamberg.(more gulps!)
Saturday 27th - Annafest (but probably not for me!)
Sunday 28th - (Annafest recovery day). Schmausenkeller to Muhlendorf/Debring hike.
Monday 29th - Mark & friends to Munich. Train leaves at 12:17. Barry recovering.
So, I hope that you can find a sport with us somewhere.
Juergen let us know when you have some free time. Maybe you can join us Sunday the 21st?
August 11 to 30 for me. Most of that with my brother.
Making my first trip to Bamberg! Sadly far too short and only part of a trip that starts in Berlin and ends in Munich. Will have a car (with my wife driving and not drinking). Missing both Annafest and Kanalissimo.
Tuesday, July 23rd--arrive in Bamberg (driving down from Erfurt--stoppping in Coburg, Sesslach and Reckendorf on the way down)
Wednesday, July 24th--Bamberg
Thursday, July 25th--Forchheim and Kreuzberg. Evening in Bamberg
Friday, July 26th--Leave Bamberg. Visit Pottenstein on the way to Nürnberg
Thanks for all the advice I've gotten from you guys!
Enjoy your trip Brian. We may see you on the 24th. I think that day we'll be wandering around Bamberg visiting breweries waiting for one of our group to arrive from Hamburg.
I will be on the lookout for you.
Sadly not me Jurgen.And I am krank as the proverbial schwein.
Shame Andy, we'll miss you.
Hope you get well soon, Andy. Still I have no clue who's here when because of so many answers with no relation to my question and I simply have no time to read them all. I'm off to Galicia for the next two weeks from Wednesday the 24th of July onwards. If someone's here after that time, please feel free to contact me. After my last cellphone crash I lost all your numbers by the way. Think it was the last windowsphone on earth. A water bottle hit it.
Hi Juergen I'm here now until after you leave!
Hi Juergen I'm here now until after you leave!
Juergen I messaged you about this weekends plans. Hopefully you can join us
Try to join you and Barry on Sunday, but I'm not sure at all I can make it. Lucky bastards. ;-)
Thanks to Ryanair's constant changing of routes, next week, I'm flying into Frankfurt Flughafen. Never done this before, only the dreaded 'Frankfurt' Hahn! So, can anyone tell me what it's like getting to the train station - is it tricky and how long? Ryanair fly from Terminal 2.
From Terminal 2 there is a Tram that will take you over to Terminal 1 then you can walk to the Fernbahnhof from there (assuming you're taking a long distance train to Wurzburg).
The walk from Terminal 1 to the Fernbahnhof is fairly long but well marked and easy to follow. So it is kind of long but not tricky.
do not get confused, there are two railway stations at Frankfurt Airport. The Lokalbahnhof has track nrs 1-3 and is served by the S-Bahn and local trains. The Fernbahnhof has tracks 4-7 and is served by the long distance trains IC/EC and ICE. I do not know the distances from the terminals (never flown there) but the distance between the two stations is about 10-15 minutes, depending on how busy it is. (I have changes trains there inclusive of a change between the two stations).
There also is a shuttle bus that leaves outside of T2 baggage claim and drops you off right at the escalator up to the Fernbahnhof.
If I have checked luggage I find the bus quicker as the tram ("Sky Train") is on Level 3 and you have to work your way up theescalators.
More info here
As Treinjan said there are two train stations there but the signage is very clear in both German and English. I usually catch at train at the Long Distance Station (Fernbahnhof) since it's saves having to make an extra changover at Frankfurt main station.
Hello, good people!
Have a trip planned this year to visit Annafest. Read a few articles there and there, heard about this whole bunch of celebration while visiting Nurmberg last year. To cut short - nowhere I encountered the need to reserve tables like at infamous Oktoberfest, but now a fella from my team is texting about me the need to do so. So how does it work @ Annafest?
So far from what I had gathered, it seemed to me that whole experience is quite liberal, you can move from Keller to Keller, grab yours stoneware and join the company, no need for reservations But maybe my mate is right, there is a need for reservations? Any experience to share?
I've been several times and going again this year. There is no need to reserve a table. Now it can get busy on certain days (such as the first Saturday for instance) but I've never had trouble finding a place to sit, or getting a beer, etc. even on a busy day. Some people do reserve tables but I think that is mostly larger groups that do this and really only if they are planning on staying at one keller. I think if you're planning on bouncing from keller to keller you're better off not reserving and you'll find it very easy to do.
Oh and go early, especially on a weekend. When it gets really busy is usually in the evening so i highly recommend that you get there early in the day. We are going on a Saturday this year and will get there at 11am.
Yup, agree with Mark. As he said, if you’re more than 5 people and want to go at peak times AND are really fussy about sitting together then I suggest going at non peak times. Reserving will probably be more hassle than it sounds.
Gutted I can't do Annafest this year as I was hoping to but definitely aiming to make a trip to the Kellerwald before the end of the season.
Thanks for info, good people. And what about the healthy need for food - if the group of 8 wanna have a dinner on festival area, so also no need for reservation?
Again no need for reservations. Not sure I would use healthy in the same sentence as food at Annafest but it's easy enough to get at most of the kellers.
Does anybody know off hand when Spezial starts their summer vacation? Back in the day it was right before the Sandkerwa but it seems like the last time I was in Bamberg in August it was earlier than that.
No sign up yet. If you want I can text Florian, always good to know when the dark days will be upon us again. I'm 99% sure it'll straddle Sandkerwa.
No need to text, not that urgent. Just ask next time you pop in for a beer. I know they are closed during Sandkerwa, just want to know how much before... Thx
To the joy of many fans out there, the owner of Neder has decided to lease out the brewery and pub to the 23 year old who some of you may have seen working in the pub. I had heard that breweries such as fässla were interested and we could have lost an institution.
He’s a trainee brewer and from my experience in the taproom is a very good choice. Neder geht weiter!
Good news indeed! Thanks for sharing, Jason.
Let's hope he doesn't change a thing!
Is that the big guy who has been there a lot recently? It's great news as long as everything stays the same - no weird coffee/vanilla stouts, no double ipas; in fant absolutely no ipa's of any kind. I might be in there next week, so we'll see if any changes.
That's him. He's been there a while, so wipe the sweat off your brow Barry, I'm sure he'll keep things just as they are.
You never know, look at Mahrs.
Had Mahrs Pils on draught in a pub in Hereford at the weekend. The first mouthful was a shock!
Why, was it good?!! Whilst i appreciate the reference, I'm 100% sure that you couldn't have two characters so different as Herr Michel and the young man at Neder.
I had it some months ago in the brewery. So buttery I couldn't finish it. I complained and the waitress was like, "what do you know".
But never mind the diacetyl, you can get it in cans!
It wasn't buttery but had an unpleasant hop extract edge on the first mouthful. This dissipated the longer it was in the glass. By the end it was OK at best but hardly earthshattering.
I've now read the article - it's the same guy as served me on a few occasions and all sounds well - phew!
Sorry chaps but I fear you are being a tad optomistic. The dread phrase "for the time being" is mentioned twice,and bearing in mind possible duff translation the owner says " stay the same on the outside" I smell change in the wind.
With respect Andrew, the article doesn’t suggest what you are saying. I translated it without any tool and whilst I understand where you saw these issues, I didn’t. The first “zur Zeit’ just meant that he had been doing his Ausbildung to the point he was appointed. The “stay the same from the outside” just means that everything remains the same apart from the “ownership” (the inside).
My german is better than most on this forum, but I haven’t spent a lot of time on this, and I’m far from perfect. But it’s positive in my opinion.
Correction; he’d done his Ausbildung and brewer training and he’s been at neder for 7 years. He said he wants to continue the pub without disturbance: you can bring your own food, the beer will be poured from the barrel and the beer quality will remain the same.
That's what I understood from the translation. In any case, it will probably outlast me in it's present form. If not, c'est la vie - or whatever the equivalent is in Deutsch.
So ist das Leben!
Mea culpa Jason, I was using google translate. so could well have been mistranslated.
(I truly hope so!)
No worries. Google translate is really rather good these days, but it’s the subtleties that are often lost.
Today I visited Klosterbrauerei Irsee near Kaufbeuren. A bit expensive and touristy but very pleasant place with excellent beer and some of the most beautiful Krugs and glasses I’ve come across. The Starkbier was excellent.
Then to the zoigl brewery in Kaufbeuren. In terms of authenticity, this is almost more ‘authentic’ than the ‘real’ thing. Excellent replica of a Oberpfälzer Stub’n, even with that meaty smell. The beer was quite dark, poured from a sole tap in the corner. Typical zoigl co2 levels, quite malty but also a little odd. A sign told that it was brewed at the end of April and has been lagered since then. For me that might be too long, as it had almost no sweetness to it, although as said it was quite dark. The hops came through to add to the bitterness of the malt. If it just kept the malt sweetness it would have been good.
That said, it was really worth a visit, but I wouldn’t go out of your way to visit.
I met the chap from Kaufbeuren a few years ago when he was at Abseits demonstrating his beers. He was an interesting character and we talked for quite some time.
At first, I was really quite in opposition to the idea of brewing Zoigl in the Allgaeu but, in the end, I was pretty convinced of his sincerity in loving the tradition of Zoigl and not just perpretating a rip-off, like some other breweries. I had always intended to go and see for myself but it's a tricky place to get to without a car, so have never managed it.
In the end, the Zoigl beers are simply another type of Pilsner beer, as most use mainly pilsner malt, with different proportions of Muenchner etc., but German hops, as opposed to Czech ones, which I suppose is one of the things that make German Pilsner a bit different.
Good to get a first-hand report on the experience, save me going!