Germany Munchen this spring.

Discussion in 'Europe' started by Flashy, Nov 13, 2013.

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  1. Flashy

    Flashy Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2003 Vermont

    I am heading to Munchen this spring and hope to catch Frulingsfest, but won't be the end of the world if we do not. More interested in enjoying the beer, food and people of my favorite city in the world. Question: when do the beer gardens reliably open for the year and do you think hotels and flights are more expensive during the Frulingsfest period. Thank you, Mark.
     
  2. Bierman9

    Bierman9 Poo-Bah (4,170) Dec 20, 2001 New Hampshire
    Beer Trader

    Airfares are low from early Jan to late March, then start to rise... United for Burlington-Munich, for example, offers low-season fares 09JAN to 27MAR, based on out-bound departure date.... weekdays lower then weekends.... fares also vary depending on length of stay...
     
  3. Gutes_Bier

    Gutes_Bier Disciple (389) Jul 31, 2011 Germany

    Just guessing, but I think Biergartens are usually open April - October but will close for bad weather. So take "reliably open" here to mean "should be open if the weather cooperates". I was in Munich this past April and ate/drank (HB Urbock) at the Chinesicher Turm. Highly recommended! The Fruhlingsfest was the following weekend, so if you go over some time mid-ish to late April you might hit it.
     
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  4. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

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  5. herrburgess

    herrburgess Meyvn (1,010) Nov 4, 2009 South Carolina
    Industry Beer Trader

    The Fruehlingsfest had indoor tents -- just like the Oktoberfest -- when I visited. Worth spending quite a bit of time there, IMO. That said, the Biergardens typically open from late April on, depending on weather.
     
  6. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    But far fewer. I think there were only 2 when I visited.
     
  7. Bierman9

    Bierman9 Poo-Bah (4,170) Dec 20, 2001 New Hampshire
    Beer Trader

    And a noticeable (and pleasant!) lack of Italians, Aussies and Kiwis, I'll bet... ;-)
     
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  8. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    :wink:
     
  9. boddhitree

    boddhitree Devotee (482) Apr 13, 2008 Germany

    Wow, props to you, OP, for not asking where to buy Cantillion in München. ;-)

    Also add drunk Americans and Brits, or so I've heard.
     
  10. Gutes_Bier

    Gutes_Bier Disciple (389) Jul 31, 2011 Germany

    Not sure if this was coincidence or what but I ended up talking to Russians at two different tents at the O'Fest this year.
     
  11. Flashy

    Flashy Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2003 Vermont

    Don't think the beer gardens are open by 3/27. Thanks all!
     
  12. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    I was there and I was quite respectable, thank you.
     
  13. einhorn

    einhorn Aspirant (292) Nov 3, 2005 California
    Beer Trader

    Having lived in Munich for 2 years, it's pretty safe to say that most Biergarten will open up WEATHER PERMITTING. Great weather in March = beer sales. Might not have food available, but they will sell beer at the inkling of spring weather. Bad weather in JUNE? No Biergarten.

    One other thing to consider if you are around: Starkbierfest (Paulaner Nockherberg) is from MAR 21 - MAR 30 2014. This is clearly the most "anti-tourism" fest going on in Munich.
     
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  14. Stahlsturm

    Stahlsturm Initiate (0) Mar 21, 2005 Germany

    Remember, if the gardens are closed, the cellars are open. :slight_smile:
    And yes, like some already wrote, the gardens will open at the first ray of Sun, whenever that may be.
     
  15. Gutes_Bier

    Gutes_Bier Disciple (389) Jul 31, 2011 Germany

    When I was taking German classes at the Volkshochschule here, one of my classmates was American military, soon to be retiring and wanting to stay in Deutschland. He told a great story about how he happened across some beer fest in Munich and had a local guy at his table start getting on him about how Americans can't drink and so on. Well he didn't realize he was at the Starkbierfest and proceed to down liter after liter of I guess Salvator. Needless to say the story gets better/worse from there, but I just can't do it justice in writing.
     
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  16. Stahlsturm

    Stahlsturm Initiate (0) Mar 21, 2005 Germany

    We've all been there some time or another, haven't we ? :slight_smile: It's part of the learning curve :grinning:
     
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  17. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    The night before the opening of Frühlingsfest we went to Augustiner Keller for a couple. I asked the Oper if he had any Maibock. "No, but we have Starkbier…" Hindsight tells me that he was probably skeptical an American knew what he was talking about, tone of voice and looking up from a down-turned face, but my eyes lit up and I told him I'd certainly have a Starkbier… but please, only a half liter. Yeah, was afraid of a full liter of Starkbier… but I realized my mistake and ordered a second half liter. :wink:
     
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  18. Domingo

    Domingo Poo-Bah (2,196) Apr 23, 2005 Colorado
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    "Weather permitting" is definitely something to keep in mind. We were there in May of 2009 and it rained intermittently the whole time. Augustiner Keller is well-covered so they would open at the drop of a hat, but the other places mostly stayed shuttered.
     
  19. Flashy

    Flashy Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2003 Vermont

    I know my place when traveling and always try to act like an ambassador of my native land wherever I go.
     
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  20. Flashy

    Flashy Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2003 Vermont

    Thank you all!
     
  21. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,263) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    The Spezial Keller was open on a sunny warm day in late March last year. Glad we went then, as the rest of the trip had overcast chilly weather.
     
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  22. TreinJan

    TreinJan Initiate (135) Apr 13, 2006 Netherlands

    Spezial Keller has an indoors restaurant as well, so they are open almost all year.
     
  23. boddhitree

    boddhitree Devotee (482) Apr 13, 2008 Germany

    I'm going to München on the last Saturday in February for BrauKustLive! 2014...whatever date that is. Last year for BKL, it was Starkbierszeit and I wasn't that impressed with Augustiner's version, way to hot, too much alcohol flavor, for me a beer that would've been best lagered 2 or 3 months to mellow this flaw, which made it quite unpleasant to drink even a 0.5L glass and overpowered all the other malty flavors (go back to my review of BKL here. in the
    I hope others who live in country are joining me for the really best craft beer festival in Germany, for it combines celebrating the spirit of innovation with focusing on craft German brewers, too.
     
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  24. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,263) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    We had never been outside in the Biergarten, so that was special. :slight_smile:
     
  25. herrburgess

    herrburgess Meyvn (1,010) Nov 4, 2009 South Carolina
    Industry Beer Trader

    Two of them, actually: on the Obere Koenigstrasse and on Sternwartstrasse (where the Keller is)
     
  26. TreinJan

    TreinJan Initiate (135) Apr 13, 2006 Netherlands

    No, we are speaking about the Spezial Keller, the one on Sternwartstraße.
    Obere Königstraße is the Brauereigasthof.
     
  27. herrburgess

    herrburgess Meyvn (1,010) Nov 4, 2009 South Carolina
    Industry Beer Trader

    Sorry. You're correct. Poor early(ish) morning reading on my part.
     
  28. Bierman9

    Bierman9 Poo-Bah (4,170) Dec 20, 2001 New Hampshire
    Beer Trader

    Flashy,

    Since you're a WWII enthusiast too, I would normally recommend the 3hr trip by train to Berchtesgaden, and a visit to the Kehlsteinhaus (Eagles Nest). But, being March, it may still be closed due to snow.... There's always Dachau, though...

    Currahee and Prosit!!
     
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  29. danfue

    danfue Initiate (0) Sep 16, 2012 Germany

    Here's a good headline for you I found recently: Führer auf dem Obersalzberg entlassen. Führer fired at Obersalzberg.
    Of course, this is about tourist guides ("Gästeführer"), but you really have to wonder if the author and/or publisher of the paper were thinking before publishing it. It sounds like something from a satire-paper.
    Sorry for the off-topic.
     
  30. Stahlsturm

    Stahlsturm Initiate (0) Mar 21, 2005 Germany

    I'm quite sure it was an intentional play to suck in readers. Worked for you after all :grinning:
     
  31. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    Highly recommend Hotel zum Türken for lodging.
     
  32. Bierman9

    Bierman9 Poo-Bah (4,170) Dec 20, 2001 New Hampshire
    Beer Trader

  33. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (1,882) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois

    Dave -- you have a beer at the Berchtesgaden Hofbräuhaus Biergarten? The view is more than worth the price of a beer.
     
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  34. Bierman9

    Bierman9 Poo-Bah (4,170) Dec 20, 2001 New Hampshire
    Beer Trader

    Yes.... and there are SOOOO many places in Berchtesgaden with great views.... Have been there about 10x.... Fantastic village.... Prosit!
     
  35. cu29

    cu29 Initiate (143) Sep 26, 2005 Wisconsin

    I did the Munich Frühlingsfest in 2012. It was similar to Oktoberfest, but on a much much smaller scale. But it was fun! I'd go back.

    You may want to venture out of Munich during the same time period for a few other fests when in Bayern.

    The one in Kulmbach was a huge disappointment. I thought there would be a big, fun tent like during their Bierwoche fest. Wrong. It was like a kiddie fest with a few spots to grab a beer. Lesson learned.

    The Coburg Frühlingsfest was better than the Kulmbach one. They had a fair sized tent, but on the afternoon we visited, it was a bit slow. We only stayed for a couple of liters.

    The Neumarkt Volksfest was held in a huge building, with a very large outdoor beirgarten. The weather was great, so most people crowded the biergarten. My guess is that the building could accommodate around 3,000+ people. But when we were there is was pretty uncrowded.....but I could see it really rocking on a weekend night.

    On Monday April 30, 2012 we took the train from Munich up to Landshut for their Mai Dult. Some more perfect weather, very warm (75 and sunny). Two very large fest tents with biergartens, and quite busy. Recommended.

    We also went to Passau for their Mai Dult. This fest is a bit of a distance from the center, but worth it. The main spot is again in a huge building. Big enough for 4,000? But it was done up very nicely to resemble a fest tent. And it was rocking! Another recommended spring fest.....

    On Sunday May 6 2012 we visited a Frühlingsfest in Deggendorf, which is about 50 minutes from Passau by train. A couple of good sized tents, but not crowded on this day. But my buddy and I met some great people from the area and we all had a fantastic time, as is the case at many of these fests. We got silly drunk, and ended up missing the last train back to Passau. (Outside of the fest, we ended up meeting some undercover Polizei, who zipped us back to Passau in their squad - what luck!).

    So....if you have the time, consider some other fests as well!!!

    Here are a couple of websites I use to check dates of fests, as they can vary from year to year.

    http://www.ganz-muenchen.de/volksfeste/kalender/liste_index.html

    http://www.volksfeste-in-deutschland.de/bayern.html

    Airfare should not spike just because of the Munich Frühlingsfest. It is really not that big, especially when compared to O-fest. And airfares don't really spike for Oktoberfest, either. I think the cost of your flight is going to depend on how often you check fares. And when you see a good price, jump on it. From the Midwest (always Milwaukee or Chicago) to Munich I have paid anywhere from a low of $500.00 (Oktoberfest 2007) to a high of $1,100 (summer 2006, Oktoberfest 2013). Last May I caught a cheap fare on Air Berlin for $660.00. It just depends. You gotta check different sights as well. The Air Berlin flight I scored was only coming up on Travelocity.

    Prost!
     
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