München (Munich), Bayern (Bavaria):
Augustiner am Platzl
Thursday 30th July 2015
If it is possible to have a “lokal”, the German equivalent of a local, in the centre of one of the most visited cities in the world, then this is it. At least it has the appearance of one.
I would imagine that in the winter months it really takes on that persona. Even in July I thought that the manic tourist activity going on outside was a thousand miles away.
My earlier article on the Augustiner Brästüberl contains the history but briefly 1294 was when an Augustine monastery was opened on the site that is now the Augustiner Grossgastätten in Neuhauser Strasse. A record of 1328 shows there was a brewery in the monastery, so this is taken as the founding date. The monastery was secularised in 1803 and privatised. In 1829 it was bought by the Wagner family in whose hands it remains today. It is Munich’s only private brewery so I guess that it why it is the most traditional.
However the Augustiner am Platzl is nowhere near as old as that. It was opened in October 2003 and I believe it was previously a Suschi restaurant, although confirmation would be welcomed.
It closed in 2008 for a complete renovation both inside and out, providing a traditional look especially in the main room on the corner of Platzl and Orlandostrasse.
I entered through this room known as the Wirtsstube. It can accommodate up to 90 customers and is the most traditional room in the building, it looks like it could have appeared like this for ages.
There is dark stained wood panelling to above head height. On the walls above that there are paintings hanging and also framed photographs on the panelling. The panelling is topped with all sorts of bric-a-brac. The furniture is wooden and the table tops are scrubbed lighter-coloured wood. There’s some nice electric chandeliers illuminating the room.
The bar-service area is wooden and echoes the walls with the additional of a stainless steel top around the sink. The beer service fount is copper-clad. The bar-back is also in sympathy with the room’s décor with space for a wooden barrel but sadly, this day it was missing!
A number of Munich pubs only offer beer from the wood in the evenings. I suppose that was the situation on this day yet I have always been able to savour it here previously. It was a very hot day with temperatures as high as 37ºC so this could also have been a factor in its absence.
As I wanted to stand up I went up a few steps to the Gewölbestube which there were some tall tables. This room holds 70 patrons and there are four more rooms on the first floor. This room has a slightly more contemporary feel about it although the furniture remains wooden. On the far wall in three alcoves there are some odd 3D paintings depicting various carnival characters such as jesters and minstrels.
However tradition is still with us as on the opposite corner of the room next to the newspaper racks was the large lockable cabinet that contains the glasses of the regular customers.
Which leads me neatly onto the beers available and these were: Lagerbier Hell (5.2%), this is the one that normally comes from the wooden barrel; Edelstoff (5.6%) a stronger Hell beer and Dunkel (5.6%).
Please note that Wheat beer and Pils are only available in bottles at this pub.
There is some outside seating under shade on the Platzl itself. The pub offers a full food menu with a lot of Bavarian specialities.
One I had not seen before was Allgäuer Kässpatz’n and this is Spätzle, a south German pasta dish made with a cheese selection from the Allgäu region.
It consists of Bergkäse (mountain cheese), Emmental (German version of the Swiss favourite) and Romadur (a half hard cheese). It has melted onions and chives on top, along with a side salad, delicious! Only on Fridays, though.
This is a great pub that is surrounded by other great pubs and comes highly recommended.
Augustiner am Platzl, Orlandostrasse 5, 80331 Munich. Tel: 089 211 1556
Open: Monday-Sunday 10.00-24.00
Easy to find in the centre of the old city. From Marienplatz station, exit from the S-Bahn platform (S-Bahn) if coming from Hauptbahnhof (Main station) at the south easterly end.
Walk through the arch into Tal. Turn left in front of the Weissesbrauhaus. Continue for a short distance, turn right then left. When you see the Hofbrauhaus on the right and you will find the pub on the left opposite.
Marienplatz station is served by S1-S4, S6 and S8.
It is also served by U-Bahn lines U3 and U6.
Update January 2020. Hours are now: Monday-Friday: 11.00-24.00;