Munich is the world capital of beer, and there is only one place to head if you are looking to experience the heart of beer culture in the city - the Hofbräuhaus. With 30,000 visitors a day on average, and more than 20km of sausages served each year, Hofbräuhaus is a very touristy destination, but not one which attracts just tourists. Many locals have their 'Stammtisch' (regular table) here, and indeed some 550 have their own key - not to the entrance to the building, but to the storage facility which guards their own personal beer mugs. A nice introduction to the Hofbräuhaus phenonmenon in the video below.
Originally founded in 1589 by Wilhem V, Duke of Bavaria, the Hofbräuhaus was the brewery to the old Royal Residence and remains one of the oldest breweries in Munich today. Its international appeal and popularity as a tourist destination dates back to the end of the Second World War, as Allied troops returned home with their HB tankards, and the brand has enjoyed considerable success expanding all over the globe, after the first satellite Hofbräuhaus was opend in Genoa.
Beer is of course at the heart of the whole experience, and tourists marvel at the sheer strength of the waitresses who carry an improbable number of litre glasses of beer in their hands, efficiently serving the 3,000 throng. The menu is simple, traditional and hearty, the live music classic Bavarian. A tourist trap? Of course, but not one you can afford to miss on your visit to the city.
While beer and enjoyment today are the essence of this fabulous insititution, it has various historical connections with Munich's colourful past, not least as a favourite place for Adolf Hitler, and the former German leader used the building for public addresses, as you can see in the video below.
Platzl 9, 80331 München