Enveloped in history, radiating an irresistible ambience, and the epitome of Bavarian conviviality, Munich’s Hofbräuhaus is not just a beer hall—it’s an institution. With its intriguing past and energetic present, the Hofbräuhaus transcends being a mere tourist attraction—it’s a vibrant slice of living history where beer, tradition, and Bavarian spirit intermingle.
The story of the Hofbräuhaus started in 1589 when Wilhelm V, Duke of Bavaria, unimpressed with Munich’s beer quality, decided to establish his own brewery. Initially, the brewery served exclusively the Wittelsbach royal family, but its reputation rapidly reached far and wide. By 1828, the beer hall was opened to the public, setting the stage for a legendary narrative.
Through centuries, the Hofbräuhaus weathered numerous tempests. It survived the upheavals of wars, political shifts, and even the World War II bombings that left only the beer hall standing. In the post-war period, the Hofbräuhaus underwent substantial restoration. Today, it stands as a proud emblem of Bavarian culture and tradition’s resilience and enduring charm.
The Hofbräuhaus is famous worldwide for its beer, brewed following the stringent Bavarian Purity Law of 1516 (Reinheitsgebot). This law mandates the use of only water, barley, and hops in brewing. The result is a variety of robust, flavorful beers that promise a pure and satisfying experience. The flagship Hofbräu Original, a crisp and rejuvenating Munich-style Helles lager, is a crowd favorite. Other beloved brews include the darker Dunkel, the strong Maibock, and the ever-popular Oktoberfest brew.
Stepping inside the Hofbräuhaus, one can’t help but be captivated by its effervescent atmosphere. The grand beer hall, featuring vaulted ceilings, chandeliers, and traditional Bavarian murals, can host up to 1300 guests. At its core is a stage where traditional Bavarian bands perform energetic folk tunes, and it’s common to see visitors and locals alike swaying to the music with a stein in hand.
The beer is best enjoyed with the hearty Bavarian fare on offer. The Hofbräuhaus menu is a love letter to traditional Bavarian cuisine. From pretzels and Weisswurst (white sausage) to Schweinshaxe (roasted pork knuckle) and a selection of regional cheeses, the robust and flavorful dishes are the perfect accompaniment to the beer.
Tradition is ingrained in the DNA of the Hofbräuhaus. Most notably, beer is still served in traditional 1-liter steins (Maß). Regulars even have the privilege to lock their personal steins in the beer hall’s vaults. As you clink steins with the friendly locals under the warm Bavarian light, the Hofbräuhaus offers an authentic glimpse into Munich’s hospitable spirit and time-honored customs