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Munich, locally known as München, is the capital of the German state of Bavaria, once a wealthy kingdom in its own right. Best known for its world-famous Oktoberfest, the area produces some outstanding beers and bratwurst. If you appreciate a foaming pint of real ale, brewed to traditional methods and served with hearty peasant food, you’ll love what’s on offer in Munich’s beer gardens, markets, restaurants, and brewery tours.
What to Eat in München
You need to master the language of food in Munich to fully enjoy your culinary experience. For everything else, English is fine. German sausages usually have the phrase wurst in the name, such as bratwurst, schnittwurst, and knackwurst. Weisswurst are boiled white sausages made of veal, bacon, and herbs and are a local delicacy. Dumplings are known as knödel and are made of potatoes or bread rather than flour and suet. Schweinsbraten is pot-roasted pork, leberkäse is a baked sausage in a roll, and sauerkraut is actually pickled cabbage.
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Where to Eat in Munich
You’ll find most of the above foods and more at the bustling Viktualienmarkt on Innenstadt. This traditional open-air market is one of the oldest in the region, with canvas-covered stalls piled high with fresh local produce. See pasta being made and sample delicious local cheeses. Seasonal vegetables, fruit, fish, meat, pastries, and local honey will vie for your attention. It’s a cultural culinary experience just to browse, watch, and listen.
Close by is Bratwursttherzl, a homely Bavarian restaurant on Dreifaltigskeitplatz. The menu offers a mesmerizing choice of homemade bratwurst cooked over a beech wood brazier. Sausages are traditionally served with a soft pretzel, sauerkraut, and a selection of sweet mustards.
If you are a wine drinker, the Pfälzer Weinstube on Residenzstrasse has a huge cellar of German wines including Riesling, Silvaner, Rotling, Pinot Blanc, and Pinot Noir. Let the vintner guide you and enjoy some of Franconia’s finest wines, which beautifully pair with creamy pork dishes served with piles of potatoes. If you want to dine in style, try the Schuhbecks in den Südtiroler Stuben, a memorable Michelin-star restaurant on Platzl.
Munich’s Beer Scene
Germany produces over 5,000 different types of beer in 1,200 breweries, many of which are around Munich. The beer-brewing tradition began in monasteries and is now produced in state-of-the-art premises with the highest quality controls.
A behind-the-scenes tour of the Paulaner Brewery is a fun experience and includes beer tasting and transport for well under $20 per person. Alternatively, join a culinary guided tour of Munich, which includes sampling six of Munich’s best Helles (light) beers and local foods.
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There’s nowhere better to end the day than relaxing in the beer garden overlooking the lake in the Englischer Garten. Follow this with a rousing evening at the authentic Hofbräuhaus. You’ll see strong-armed waitresses wearing peasant-style Bavarian costumes expertly delivering huge foaming beer steins to long trestle tables. Enjoy the atmosphere, the entertainment, the camaraderie with strangers, and most of all enjoy the food and drink!