NEW YORK (Reuters) - Jim Koch considers Munich a beer-lover’s paradise. The founder and chairman of Boston Beer Co, which brews Samuel Adams beer, heads to the region north of the city every year to select hops.
Koch, 65, is drawn to Munich because beer drinking is a way of life there, and the trips connect him with his family’s German roots. Here are his tips for business travelers who have 48 hours to spend in this Bavarian brewing capital.
Best way to get to town from the airport: “The taxis there are often Mercedes. It’s a way different experience than a New York taxi. The majority of them are extremely well-maintained and very polite and clean.”
Where to sleep: “The big classic 19th century hotel which is right downtown is the Bayerischer Hof (Promenadeplatz 2-6). It’s kind of like staying in New York at the Waldorf.”
Power breakfast: “The Charles Hotel (Sophienstrasse 28) has one of the top restaurants in Munich - and they serve breakfast. I’ve taken my wife there because her culinary standards are a little higher than mine.”
Team outing: “A beer garden would be, I think, a great place for team building. There’s one called Weisses Brauhaus (Tal 7), where they specialize in Weiss beers. As a brewer, it’s interesting for me to taste various interpretations of that one style of beer.
“When the weather is good, there’s the Augustiner-Keller (Arnulfstrasse 52). It’s a classic German beer garden where families come on Sundays with picnic baskets. You feel very Bavarian there.
“At the other end of the spectrum, if you’re crazy enough to do it, is parasailing. A couple of our brewers did it a year or two ago. They put you on a bus and take you out to the Alps. Everyone goes parasailing with the instructor.”
What to do with spare time: “Go to the English Garden. In the middle of the city park, you can watch surfing. It’s one of those completely unexpected things to encounter in Munich. To me, it kind of represents Munich: outdoorsy, creative and fun.
“If you’re there during soccer season, a Bayern Munich game (Werner-Heisenberg-Allee 25) would be fun. Going to a European soccer game, it’s just exciting. It’s a lot of fun to see these really well-dressed men and women behaving like crazy Jets fans.”
Calling all carnivores: “The really nice restaurants tend to have the kind of cuisine you’d get in Boston and everywhere else. A very Bavarian option is Haxnbauer (Sparkassenstraße 6). What you will get there is things like pig knuckles and veal joints and big slabs of meat. This is for people who want to fill up on meat and beer.”
For souvenirs: “If you’re really into beer, you can go to Wolnzach and see the Hop Museum (Elsenheimerstraße 2). You can buy hop perfume, hop pillows. I bought a little bobble head hop cone.”
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