Daily Archives: March 31, 2012

Biergarten with the Boys!

Every couple of months or so, there is a core group of us at work that will get together for drinks and dinner.  Sometimes we turn it into a company event and invite everyone and at other times it’s just last minute plans to unwind from our crazy lives in the consulting world.  Over the years we’ve gone to some interesting places and had some fun times like going bar hopping in Greenwich Village, vodka sampling at Pravda, tequila shots at a fun bar, etc.  We try to choose a different place each time to keep life interesting.  Most of the time it ends up being me and a bunch of men and thus the title of this post.  Mind you I will never complain about this ratio.  They are like my big brothers despite most of them being younger than me and oh soooo protective that I never have to worry about someone bothering me at the bar of choice.
Last night we went to Pilsner House in Hoboken, NJ to celebrate a couple of birthdays in the group.  We had a good turnout with a showing of eight.  Pilsner House is a biergarten that makes you feel like you’ve been transplanted to Munich as soon as you walk through the door.  The place is huge and set with long wooden picnic tables and benches.  There’s a long bar at one end and a sausage stand at the back.  There’s also an outdoor courtyard for the warm days.  This place is awesome.  There was a live band and an amazing selection of beers on tap and in bottle.  You can also get beer flights so you can taste and decide what you like before ordering.  The tap beer is always served in a glass etched with the brand.  There is so much variety that it is very difficult to choose.  My choice for the evening was Spaten Dunkel.  Just like my alcohol, I don’t like sissy, light beers.  I prefer big, bold beers with complex flavors.  The Dunkel was full of spice, coffee and a hint of chocolate.  Delicious!!
Most biergartens in Germany typically serve pretzels with mustard and various sausages with sauerkraut.  The ones I have been to in the US (not that many in all fairness) pretty much serve the same fare.  The sausages in Germany can’t be beat but who can go there all the time for a beer.  At Pilsner House they have modified this tradition and offer a full dinner menu from their kitchen which you can order through the wait staff.  If you want to go traditional you can order your sausage of choice with fries and sauerkraut at the sausage stand in the back.  We started with an order of two fresh baked and hot pretzels.  These pretzels were ginormous!! (Yes, I know that’s not a real word).  The mustard that came with them was positively flavorful and just added a nice spice to the soft, doughy pretzel.
Moving on to dinner, we were split.  A few went to the sausage stand and got some Kielbasa and others ordered from the menu.  I went for the special of day – Beef Bourguignon made with beef shoulder and served with homemade spaetzle, green beans and brussel sprouts. Several of us ordered this and let me tell you this was a fantastic choice.  The tenderness and flavor on the meat was absolutely devine and one would never expect to eat this well in a biergarten.  Those who ordered the kielbasa were very satisfied with their choice as well. 
Another round of beers, substituted for dessert, wrapped up the evening far later than intended as always.  But what a fun way to celebrate a birthday or just hang out for an evening!!  I’m looking forward to going back soon with my boys when the weather is warmer and sit on the outdoor patio.
Pilsner House
1422 Grand Street (at corner of 15th)
Hoboken, NJ
Bottoms up!!

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