It is always nice to catch up with friends and try something new, especially when the company and surroundings are as nice as a delightful evening last night in an enormous building next to Max-Weber-Platz, which is much loved but has been sadly closed for the last three years. Until, that is, last night.
For the Brauerei Unionsbräu at Einsteinstr. 42 next to Max-Weber-Platz is open once more! After closing its doors in 2012, the small brewery and restaurant, whose beer was brewed on site, lay empty for almost three years, until the building's owner, the City of Munich, found a new tenant early this year, experienced Munich gastronom, Igor Divjak, who also runs Huiras in Fürstenrieder Straße.
Last night was not an official opening as such, the restaurant merely opened its doors, but word on the street had obviously got around, as the main restaurant filled in a matter of minutes, remaining that way until late. For an opening night, trade was very brisk, and the efficient waiting team were certainly put through their paces. Here is the main dining room on the ground floor.
But before we get to the food, it was time for a tour of the building. This place is HUGE, a mere 2,700m2 of internal space in all over three floors, with seating capacity for up to 500 people.
We start downstairs in what was the brewery. I understand that there are no immediate plans to start brewing again, but one thing is for sure - there will be plenty of beer consumed in this historic basement, home to the Union Brewery since 1885.
Downstairs is not yet open to the public, but come January, here you will find a cosy indoor biergarten, a pleasant watering hole for the winter months.
And the space seems to go on forever. Here is another private room downstairs, and with so much space over the three floors, there are plenty of options for private parties and corporate events.
And plenty of tradition and history wherever you turn.
The real surprise, however, was on the top floor, a world away from the beer hall atmosphere below. A selection of quite exquisite private rooms, including a nice terrace to the back of the building, what would make an excellent wedding reception area, especially with all the facilities downstairs.
Plenty of reminders of the building's rich history.
The top floor is arranged in such a way that part or all of the floor can be hired for events.
Time to head down for dinner and sample the beer and the food, passing some nice decorative touches on the way.
There are also lots of old photographs adorning the walls, painting a picture of Munich and the brewery in a time gone by.
Located just at the back of the Bavarian Parliament, and with the U-Bahn for Max-Weber-Platz literally on the doorstep, I was expecting the prices to match the excellent location, but 3.60 euro for a Weissbier was more than reasonable, as were the food prices.
As with the building renovation, the menu is Bavarian with a little twist, and there were a couple of fun dishes which we decided to try, in order to experience Bavarian fusion.
The Bay-ritos may not have been classic Mexican, but they were delicious and a meal for more than one person.
Ditto the Bay-Thai curry, nicely presented and generously portioned. There was no room for dessert, which was a shame, as I was curious to try the Bavarian Tiramisu. Next time.
The menu consists of two pages.
A thoroughly enjoyable evening, and it was a pleasure to spend a little time with owner Igor and his lovely sister Tatjana, both of whom have worked very hard to make this happen. Igor is a lively character, whose personality is as infectious as the warm atmosphere his cooking and restaurant management insprires. Thank you to both for a wonderful evening.
A great addition to the Munich culinary scene, and one which I am sure will be a smash hit.
Brauerei Unionsbräu is open daily from 17:00, and I urge you to check it out. There is a website coming soon, and telephone reservations can be made on 089 41109849.