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Munich Food + Drink: Bavarian Beer

 


Munich Food + Drink: Bavarian Beer

 
Germany - and Bavaria in particular - is the only country where no chemicals are added to the beer. That means that it is still healthy although it is an alcoholic drink. The Bavarian beer is subject to a certain law that ensures this purity of the ingredients, the "Reinheitsgebot" (Bavarian purity law). This law was constituted in Ingolstadt in 1516 and it says that beer is supposed to contain only hops, malt and water. These ingredients are quite healthy and nutritious. That's why the monks used to eat nothing and drink only beer during the time before Easter, which is called "Fastenzeit".

A famous sight where the monks still brew their beer themselves is the Kloster Andechs near the Starnberger See, about 50 km away from Munich. This is one of the favourite daily trips for people on the weekend.
When you order beer, it is good to know something about it. Although the number of different brands is too numerous to be specified here in detail, you can roughly differentiate between Weißbier and Helles. The other beer called Pils is not so important in Munich because it is rather a beer from the Northern parts of Europe. The difference between Weißbier and Helles is that the first one containsmore yeast than Helles. In addition, it has to be served in a different glass with a particular shape.
Both, Weißbier and Helles, exist as normal and dark version, the normal version being more common. Beer is usually served in glasses of 0.5 liters. In beergardens, however, and on the Oktoberfest, you usually get beer mugs ("Maßkrüge") that contain one liter of Helles. Weißbier is never served in 1-liter mugs, except you order a mixture. There are many mixtures of beer which have strange names, but in order to get the best impression of the unique taste of Bavarian beer, it is recommended to try the pure version of it first.

A famous place to drink beer outside in summer are the beergardens (Biergärten), which are typically Bavarian as well.

One of the most famous and largest festivals in the world is the Oktoberfest which takes place every year in Munich.
 
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Bavarian Purity Law >>