Friday, February 8, 2008


With the Lenten season also comes strong beer (also called Bock beer), which the monks would drink as meal. It has a higher alcohol content and is quite heavy on the malt making it dark and a bit sweet. A Maβ (litre) of Bock beer is quite heavy. During one of my visits to Stefan's parents we were going to a Bock beer festival and his Dad told me 'Bock beer is especially good for the ladies'. I got a good laugh out of that.

Stefan and I went on a walk past the Paulaner Brewery last weekend. They are the makers of the Salvator, which is the original Starkbier Bock. The entire neighborhood smelled like brewery and wouldn't be a place I'd want to live. However, uphill closer to the Nockherberg , the smell isn't so strong.

King Ludwig I allowed brewers to sell beer – but not food – outdoors, which started the beer garden phenomenon in Munich. The first food regulations were also made in Munich with the 'Reinheitsgebot' or Purity Law. Beer production was to include only water, barley, and hops. After Louis Pasteur discovered fermentation, yeast was added rather than mixing older beer with the new. It is also said that the hang over isn't so bad with German beer because there aren't any preservatives. I must admit I do get used to the beer here, and when I go home and have one I now understand when Germans said American beer was 'watery'.

Many of the biergartens you can bring your own food, which I recommend doing. However, you must purchase drinks there.

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