Best Beer Gardens
The world's first beer gardens emerged in 19th-century Bavaria, and the rather brilliant idea of sprawling, outdoor beer-drinking establishments soon took hold and spread across the globe. From Munich, Germany, to New York City and even Vietnam, here are the world's best beer gardens.
Hofbrauhaus, Munich, GermanyHands down the world's most famous beer garden, the Hofbrauhaus began brewing in the 16th century. Today, more than 400 imbibers can sit outside at its wooden, picnic-style tables and guzzle gigantic mugs of beer served by dirndl-wearing waitresses. 960 1280
Mount Takao Beer Mount, TokyoIf you somehow manage to hike nearly 2,000 feet to the peak of Tokyo's Mount Takao, at the very least, you deserve a beer. With that in mind, one of the world's highest beer gardens opened here (at just over 1,600 feet), and it offers stunning views of Tokyo's skyscrapers and sprawl. Less athletically inclined visitors can still get their drink on at high altitudes, thanks to a cable car. 960 1280
Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden, Astoria, NYBohemian Hall is proof that good beer gardens can be found in unexpected places. For more than a century, this beloved spot in Queens has helped New Yorkers get sloshed with their friends in a sea of trees and twinkly lights. Live music, table tennis and hearty Czech fare sweeten the deal. 960 1280
Koniglicher Hirschgarten, Munich, GermanyHofbrauhaus may be Germany's most popular beer garden, but Hirschgarten is far and away its biggest. Set in the midst of a 100-acre park, it seats up to 8,000 thirsty souls. 960 1280
Café Vlissinghe, Bruges, BelgiumEscape the tourist-choked streets of Bruges in this pleasant beer garden. The city's oldest bar opened in 1515, and patrons can quaff their drinks inside a charming room with dark oak rafters and wooden tables or on the peaceful outdoor terrace, where you can also play a game of pétanque. 960 1280
Letná Beer Garden, PragueEnjoy your brew with a view. Prague's most scenic beer garden is located in Letná Park, overlooking the Old City and the Vltava River. Grab a beer in a plastic cup and wander the park's trails, or relax on the terrace. 960 1280
Luong Son, Ho Chi Minh City, VietnamMake like a local in Ho Chi Minh City and visit Luong Son. At this bustling open-air beer garden of sorts, join hundreds of other patrons and pull up a plastic chair, throw back a cold Saigon beer, and order from a menu of grill-it-yourself meats (grills are provided!). 960 1280
Augustiner Bräu Kloster Mülln, Salzburg, AustriaMülln keeps as many as 1,500 thirsty revelers at a time happy with its secret beer recipe. First brewed by monks in the 17th century, the beer is still served from wooden barrels into traditional steins. 960 1280
Chinesischer Turm, Munich, GermanyOn a warm summer afternoon, it's all but impossible to resist Chinesischer Turm and its namesake, the pagoda-like Chinese Tower. This massive beer garden seats 7,000 and lies in the heart of Munich's English Garden. Plan to do your drinking on a weekend, when a brass band plays. 960 1280
Dry Rub Ribs from RendezvousDid You Know? The delicious tradition of BBQ arose in the early 1500s when Spanish explorers introduced pigs to the native populations of Florida. In turn, native Americans taught Europeans a grilling technique they called "barabicu", meaning "sacred fire pit."
Dish 1: Dry-Rub Ribs
Where: Rendezvous, 52 S 2nd St, Memphis, TN 38103 960 1280
Big Ben BBQ PlatterDid You Know? Pulled pork is a form of barbecue in which pork, usually shoulder cut (sometimes referred to as Boston butt) or mixed cuts, is cooked using a low-heat, long-cook method.
Dish 2: Big Ben BBQ Platter
Where: Pappy’s Smokehouse, 3106 Olive St, Saint Louis, MO 63103 960 1280
Baby Back RibsDid You Know? Most barbeque joints serve up two kinds of ribs: baby back and spare. Spare ribs, the larger and flatter of the two, come from the belly side of the pig. Baby back ribs, smaller, curvier and meatier, are what’s between the spare rib and the spine.
Dish 3: Baby Back Ribs
Where: Henry’s Hi-Life, 301 West St John St, San Jose, CA 95110 960 1280
BBQ Feast at Osborne Family FarmDid You Know? Brisket is a cut of meat from the breast or lower chest of beef or veal. Brisket is also the national food of the Republic of Texas.
Dish 4: BBQ Feast
Where: Osborne Family Farm, 19400 Kanis Rd, Little Rock, AR 72223 960 1280
BBQ Ribs at Buz and NedsDid You Know? In the pre-Civil War period, Southerners ate, on average, 5-lbs. of pork for every 1-lb. of beef.
Dish 5: BBQ Ribs
Where: Buz n Ned’s, 1119 North Blvd, Richmond, VA 23230 960 1280
Dish 6: BBQ Chicken Dinner
Where: The Brick Pit, 5456 Old Shell Rd, Mobile, AL 36608 960 1280