Eat Smart

Tastes Abroad: Pretzels and Beer in Germany

by Rebecca Toback, blogger

With a little less than a month left in London, I’ve become utterly sick of the food here. Each night, my flat mates and I ask each other, “What should we get for dinner tonight?” And each night, the answer is the same: ‘There is nothing to get, the food here stinks.” There’s only so much quiche you can eat before you hate it, and only so many microwavable meals you can defrost before you want to throw away the microwave.

So when I traveled to Munich, Germany, I was in complete opposition to trying any sausage like foods (wurst anyone?), but I was excited to sample the rest of the food and beer.

On our first night in Munich, we arrived much later than expected and had yet to eat dinner. So when we got into town and started searching for somewhere to eat, it was midnight. Every place we came across was closed. We asked a local where they thought we should go, and they told us Burger King. We weren’t interested.

We then came upon the Hard Rock Café, and though only the bar was open, they said they would serve us food. The menu was the same as it is in every other location; even though we weren’t able to order any German food on night no. 1, we were able to have some typical American food, which none of us had ate in months. (Side note: Hard Rock is so popular in other countries! In Prague, the line was out the door, down the block, and around the corner. No, I am not exaggerating.)

My favorite meal in Germany was at Hofbrauhaus, a tourist-friendly restaurant with live German musicians and women dressed in traditional German outfits selling the largest pretzels I’ve ever seen. Our waitress recommended we order Radlers, which is a beer mixed with lemonade. Now you might be thinking, “I’ve had Skippy in America, and it’s gross.” But we loved the Radlers that come in one liter, super heavy mugs. And, to make ordering your drink entertaining, the waitresses carry your whole table’s drinks over at once! It’s actually very impressive.

To go along with the beer, I tried to order as German a meal as I was comfortable eating. I decided on the Escalope, made with Bavarian Veal. It was basically a veal cutlet, and came with homemade potato salad that everyone thought looked like applesauce. It tasted unlike any potato salad I’ve ever had, but was actually pretty good. The veal was also pretty good something I would be likely to order again. I would certainly take it over microwavable chicken and penne in London any day.