Old German Beer Hall

Old German Beer HallOld German Beer Hall
Old German Beer HallOld German Beer Hall
Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

1009 N Old World 3rd St
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 53203-1301
United States

(414) 226-2728 | map

View: Place Reviews | Events
Reviews: 14 | Ratings: 30 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Bouleboubier
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Was only in Milwaukee for a couple days during the end of last month. Loving beer - and especially German beer - as I do, I had to check this joint out. Was going to hit up Usinger's across the street as well, however, I got caught up in the cheese bar on the corner - but that's another story!

Ok, so, upon walking in you're met with a very long, somewhat narrow room with very high ceilings. The back half of the room has all tables, while the front half of the room has the bar to the right - a quite long bar - fits maybe 15-20 people. Maybe 100s of mugs on shelves on the back bar - mug club. Random German schwag everywhere. Proprietary Hasselhoff memorabilia - a Knight Rider lunchbox...

I can't help but compare this beer hall to (not so) arguably the worst "German" bar in Philly. Where OGBH has things right here are 1) only German music playing, 2) only German beer, 3) much German schnapps in stock, 4) soccer on TV (I'm assuming often)... aside from these points, OGBH does seem to be targeting a comparable audience - party-folk just wanting to party - nothing wrong with that.

Had a decent smoked brat on a pretzel roll and a side of potato salad that smelled like a penny arcade. Turned out the food was free - part of some early, happy-hour like deal. You have to grab your own silverware though, from a nearby kiosk. never saw that before. Bartender was friendly. Beer was good - basically served and presented college bar style. This is a spot where you check your BA OCD-ness at the door.

Great thing about this particular strip of bars on this particular street (Old World 3rd St) is a bit of a German bent in most of them AND the fact that if you're headed to a Brewers game (which I was), you can, with the purchase of at least one drink, get a free shuttle ride to and from the ballpark. These shuttles sell alcohol on board.

Couldn't tell you what this place is like at night (my guess was raucous, frat-tastic), but during the early evening it's a fine enough, low key joint to get a brat and a couple tall beers in. Check it out if you've never been.

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Photo of AleWatcher
3.7/5  rDev -6.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

Stopped in here for lunch the other weekend, I kept searching for "Hofbrau House" and couldn't locate it. Finally after attempting to locate enough detail to add the place, I find it is in fact listed...

This is a long and narrow "hall" with a bar on the right and tables on left. Mug club mugs hang all over. The place looks pretty nice-- not quite good enough to pass as fully authentic, but works well enough as an American-German-themed-beer-hall.

The beer is... Well, it's Hofbrau House beer... Decent German lagers that are done well but don't get me too revved up. I understand the theme-- but would it really be too much to have any kind of craft ontap? Maybe just some bottles? This could be the only bar in WI I've been unable to find a New Glarus product... I mean, German lagers are great... But I want some IPA action!
The draw for me here was the area-- we were hitting up a nearby wine and cheese shop and decided to eat something first. I'm a sucker for German Food, and the specials were outrageously cheap!

The beer was allrigt, but the food was really quite good. I would stop here again just for the sausages!

The service was ok-- the first 2 beers I ordered were "all gone," so I asked about my 3rd choice-- the bartender couldn't even remotely describe anything about it. He wouldn't give me a small shot of a taster either. So I eventually ordered a small glass and he served me (and charged me for) a full litre.

In any case-- totally great food. Worth the stop!

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 4

Old German Beer Hall. Love this place for a stein or six of authentic German beer. I've been here numerous times and usually it's packed with people. The band is lively and it's a all around party. This time I was here a bit early and the crowd was non exsistent. Not a bad thing sometimes.I've been to a handful of the Hofbrau houses around the cuntry and this is one does the chain no harm.

The long bar leads you to the back seating area filled with benches and long tables for authentic German dining. The stage in nestled in the back corner. One of my favorite things about this place is when the German polka band passes the hat and people toss dollars in for a chance to hear Du hast by Rammstien. That is some of the most fun you can have for a couple bucks.

I'm partial to the Dunkel and pretzels with cheese. Something I get everytime I come here.

The selection is limited to the Hofbrau beers but I'm not complaining.

Overall a great place to drink like you are in Germany and have a good time with your friends.

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Photo of crossovert
4/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 5

The bar front is on old world 3rd street.

It has a long bar in the entrance and a few bench tables in the back along with a small stage.

I sat at a table in back. The music was loud and generally the same as you would here in any German themed restaurant. They were out of the first 2 things I asked for on tap. The tap selection then was only 4 beers.

The currywurst was good, as was the pretzel with the cheese sauce. The service was okay though they didn't correctly pronounce nay of the menu items so it was difficult understanding them when everyone got there plates (i was with a table of 15).

I think the food was a very good value and the beer was a bit expensive. But it was like 18$ for a full meal and 2 half liters of beer and that is reasonable imo.

Good place that I will go to again and again.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

After a Birthday tour for my girlfriend at Lakefront, our group went to Rock Bottom and shared a brew and a few appetizers. Being drunk I got the brilliant idea of getting a boot to share somewhere. Probably the last thing we needed.

Well, we ended up walking here which was good enough for me having never been here. The atmosphere was exceptional as it made me feel like I was in Germany (although I've never been there). Without flying across the pond, it's seems like the closest you can come.

I was immediately ticked off by the fact that they didn't have Oktoberfest until a few days after our visit but they still had Maibock. Despite my unrest, the waitress provided good service to our table (aside from forgetting my cousin's beer). The selection is varied enough for only carrying one breweries beer (for obvious reasons) that it's not boring either.

The beer was tasty and there's nothing quite like drinking it from their glass maas krugs. For what you get, the price is very reasonable. $6.50 for a half-liter, or $11 for a full liter. I didn't get any food there, but the menu looked incredibly appetizing and I'll be sure to make it back for a delicious brat topped with kraut!

Despite our early entry to the location, it still had a decent amount of people in it. The tables were awesome and I've heard a Friday night with the German polka band that plays Rammstein - Du Hast can't be missed. I'm looking forward to going back!

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Photo of woosterbill
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I've never been to Munich, but visiting the Hofbrauhaus in Milwaukee certainly made me all the more desirous of visiting the Mecca of German beer. There's just something so eminently satisfying about drinking a rich, flavorful brew out of a hefty, dimpled liter mug. I had their Dunkel, which was incredibly smooth and delicious, and also sampled their original (Helles) and their hefe - both were great. Obviously it would be nice to have a selection beyond that of a single brewery, but Hofbrau has a very solid lineup. The spaetzle was tasty, and the "pound a nail into a stump with a big hammer on a heavy chain" game probably provided some of the best buzzed entertainment I've every enjoyed. All around, a fun place with good beer and great atmosphere.


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Photo of jjboesen
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

While in town for Irishfest, I took a quick detour to Munich (Germany) by way of Old World Third Street where I found this welcoming outpost of the famous Hofbrau Haus - despite the rather prosaic name.

Unlike its Bavarian sister, the Old German Beer Hall, formerly Guse's City Hall, is comparatively smaller with a bar and a few windowside booths in the front and a large communal "beerhall" towards the rear. Still... no complaints here. There is a small stage where drunken revelers can do the oom-pah-pah routine.

Much like the places you'd find in Munich, this bar is tied to a brewery - Hofbrau; the limited taps include their regular helles beer (Original), the toasty dark beer, a bock, a kindl - which is a Berlin style, a seasonal and an amber. Sehr gute. Fresh, tasty and filling.

The food was much like one would find in Germany: heavy on the wursts, kraut and potatoes. They also serve spatzle as a side; this is very filling for long nights of vielgetrunkenheit. And the wurst? You gotta know it's fresh since it made by the world famous Usingers, which is literally across the street. (You can almost, but not quite, hear the pigs squealing.) Add to this, a wide variety of German beerhall kitsch scattered among the walls, some good service - though no red-faced braufrau toting giant liter mass of bier, and a generally pleasant atmosphere that begs one to hang around and Milwaukee has one fine beer bar.

Oh ja! On Sundays (11am-2pm) all litres are half-priced.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 2.5

About as close to a German beer hall you can get without being in Germany; maybe a bit smaller than some. The bar is good in addition to the long tables.

Only Hofbrau beers are available, co quality is good. Not really fair to review on selction due to the above, but they do carry 6 beers (I think) with at least one being a seasonal.

Service was ok, bartenders are a bit chatty with the regulars, but hey, not to a fault.

Foods not all that great and overpriced - my value is based on the beer which I felt for its quality was reasonable.

If you're into beer and in Milwaukee, you gotta stop by for at least one beer.

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Photo of jim102864
4.29/5  rDev +8.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

This place is as close an experience many of us with ever get to an authentic German beer hall and what a great place it is.

This is one of those rare times where it's really not so much about the beer, it's about the atmosphere and the experience. The name is fitting, as this long, narrow tavern boasts a lengthy bar along the right wall chock full of massive 1 liter and 1/2 liter Hofbrau labeled steins, just begging to be filled. They have a mug club with 1 liter porcelin steins suspended above the bar. They've also introduced some German liquors that I didn't try and am not familiar with. As has been parroted by others, they only serve Hofbrau products and for this, my second visit, I was only able to enjoy the Dunkel, but what a great experience to drink from a 1 liter stein again.

Go to the rear of the buidling and you'll find long tables with benches reminscent of a German beer hall which makes for a great setting to bring your buddies and spend the afternoon enjoying good German brew. They also have a limited menu which includes brezen (pretzels), bratwurst, knackwurst, and Muncher weiswurst. Basically snack type food but probably hearty enough to fill the belly. Their $5 lunch special sounds awesome...any sausage with any side dish and 1/3 liter of HB beer. How cool is that?

The beer selection is Hofbrau only. Original, Dunkel, Strong Bock (8.5% abv), Munchner Kindl Weisbier, their seasonl maibock and oktoberfest, and Weisgerber Amber. I had been here about 18 months ago and recalled the smooth, malty flavor of the Dunkel which is what I went with again on this visit.

Go there with friends. If you're from out of town, go there anyway and take in the ambiance, the beer, the fellowship of the other patrons, and the congeniality of the waitresses dressed in authentic german dirndls. A must for the beer fan who wants to taste the experience of drinking good beer in Germany only in Milwaukee.

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Photo of BeerBelcher
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3 | food: 2

I visited this place for the first time before a Bucks game (it is very convenient to the Bradley Center in downtown Milwaukee). I was impressed by the "focus" of the beer selection (they only pour five Hofbrau (HB) Munchen beers on draft), the efforts made to provide an authentic German beer hall experience (with a few American touches like a big screen TV and American polka band), proper glassware, a lively environment (music, a game challenging you to pound a nail into a stump, various drink specials, lots of conversation), and bench seating (in the back room).

I was not impressed with the food and the prices. Food was limited to some sausages (although they are Usinger sausages, made fresh across the street), which I thought was rather overpriced for what you got. A friend and I each had a sausage, two 1/2 liter beers, and we split some fries...our bill was $37 (before tip).

I would recommend eating elsewhere before visiting, but this place is lively and fun, so I will no doubt be back again before another Bradley Center event.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

I entered through a narrow, downward-sloping vestibule with a long table and flanking benches to the right. The lnong, dark wood, “L”-shaped bar was just past this table, still on the right. Above the bar hung the one hundred and sixteen Stein Club steins and the back bar, while almost fully mirrored, also held a wide variety of glassware. Through an archway was the Bierhall with the kitchen to the right and another of those long tables to the left. Lots of prints lined the left wall and past the kitchen, on the right, were three more tables plus two more benches along the right wall. There was an HB Munchen mural on the right wall, plus several designs painted on the floor. “The Nail Game” was situated on the left side, just before der Toiletten. Zum woh!

They had five beers on draft, all from the Hofbrau (HB) Munchen: Original, Dunkel, Maibock, Sommer, and Hefewiezen. I liked the Maibock.

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Photo of Rennpferd
4.26/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5

The Old German Beer Hall is two bars in one essentially. The front half of the hall has the bar, and a couple small tables. Pop music is played there and it pretty much is like many college area bars.

The back half of the hall is what makes this place so great. There are three large wooden tables with benches. Some stuffed caribou, a stuffed mountain goat, a few old casks from the hayday of Milwaukee, some crests and so forth. Generally things to make the hall more Bavarian in theme. On Thursdays, Fridays and Saterdays (I was there on a Saterday) they have polka style bands play traditional German music.

The waitresses are dressed like traditional German barmaids (think St. Paulie Girl), friendly and quick. The owner was also a very friendly guy and drank a beer at our table and chatted later in the evening.

The beer is served in several different containers, from little mugs to 1 Liter heavy glass steins. The beer prices were compariable to any other bar in the vicinity of Water St.

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Photo of BrewnZ
3.56/5  rDev -9.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3

This beer hall is in the Old German section of down town Milwaukee. After having a great German dinner at Mader's, along with Sapten O'fest & Lager we decided to check it out.

Shoe box shape lends a utilitarian character to the place. Walk in, bar on right, back 1/2 bench style tables that would be great to hang out in, bathrooms and kitchen beyond that. Not many people here on Tuesday night.

Pouring all Hofbrau beers. The bartender tells me only here and the HB Las Vegas (which was suprisingly fun) are the only place in the US to pour HB beers. The selection consisted of Original, Dark, Maibock, and even Kindl Weissbier at $5.50 a 1/2 liter. Not a great price but some very good beer.

I would not call it authentic, but I would return here to hang out, try the food . . . and to pound a nail into that dammed stump with one swing!

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Photo of granger10
3.98/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

Seems like what a traditional German place would be like, atleast from what I've read and heard about. Bar in the front and about 5 long picnic style tables in the back. A few tvs, not much else. I've been here a few times. Beer is really good, seems to be really fresh. Much, much better than Hofbrau out of the bottles. Selection is a bit weak since they only offer Hofbrau and only have like 4 or 5 Hofbrau beers, but what would you expect. Food is decent. The specialties are better than their other offerings. A touch pricey except when there's weekly specials. Good service, very friendly. An overall nice atmosphere.

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Old German Beer Hall in Milwaukee, WI
Place rating: 3.94 out of 5 with 30 ratings