Posts in this series!
Classic Munich Beer Houses: Hofbrauhaus & Wirtshaus
Viktualienmarkt and De Pschorr
Chinesischer Turm Beer Garden
Visiting the Residenz and lunch at Spatenhaus
Weinstephaner Brewery - Oldest Brewery In the World
Paulaner + Weisses Brauhaus
- - - ORIGINAL POST - - -
Why hello there! Do you still remember me?
I know, I know. It's totally my fault. I am so sorry for being barely there the last two weeks. It really seems like those 21 posts in May knocked me out for weeks, didn't it?
In fact, the truth is, just a few days after publishing my last (and 23rd!) post in the month of May, Bryan and I hopped on a jet over to Europe. Bryan had business in London, Munich, and Frankfurt, and I decided to tag along.
The Old Town, Frankfurt - photos courtesy of Bryan
As tempted as I was to stay with him for the entire two weeks, I knew I had to come back to work in Boston. Furthermore, a friend was flying into Boston to help me with a couple food photography workshops (which, by the way, turned out great!).
The Main River in Frankfurt - photos courtesy of Bryan
So this time, I skipped Frankfurt.
Maybe some other day.
Between London and Munich (my first time visiting Germany!), we experienced food in so many different ways. We tasted everything from three-Michelin starred French haute cuisine in London to rowdy and festive beer gardens in Munich.
We soaked in history by walking through old palaces, ornate churches, and richly-filled museums. We burned off our crazy meals by walking everywhere in these wonderfully walkable cities. We even managed to hit the hotel gym once.
Here's a brief, photo-intensive, overview of our entire trip. I promise more detailed posts on individual restaurants will follow!
Lunch after arriving into London - we actually don't look too tired!
We flew red-eye from Boston to London and arrived around 6:30AM. After freshening up in the airport lounge, we dropped off our luggage at our hotel. Slightly bleary-eyed, we stepped out into the sunshine and walked about 20 minutes to our first meal in London.
"Meat Fruit", one of the signature dishes at Heston Blumenthal's London restaurant
It turned out to be one of our favorite meals of the entire trip.
Heston Blumenthal, chef-owner of Britain's most famous restaurant The Fat Duck, opened this restaurant (his only one in London!) with a menu showcasing his interpretations of old British classics (some quite obscure) going back over a thousand years.
It's the London Eye on the other side of the Thames River
We spent the afternoon walking everywhere in London, including a visit to London classics like Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, and Westminster Abbey. Our multi-hour walk ended with a pleasant stroll along the Thames River right into Covent Garden.
Though I was tempted to nap, walking outdoors helped keep us awake!
I just love how walkable London is.
Seasonal Spring Salad at Alaine Ducasse
For dinner, we switched from old British to modern French, where we enjoyed our only three-Michelin starred meal of the entire trip.
Yes, it was quite a day of eating!
The next day while Bryan went to his business meetings, I met up with business contacts in the UK as well as food blogger friends (hi Jackie!).
I enjoyed a pleasant afternoon by myself wandering through the different neighborhoods of London and checking out paintings at the impressive (and free!) National Gallery.
Seared duck breast with local radish tops
For our last dinner in London, we had the unusual experience of seeing what happens when a 2-Michelin starred restaurant makes a grave mistake during the meal. I was thoroughly impressed by how hard the restaurant tried to "make us whole." The service blew us away. More on that in my full post.
Munich - the old Town
Our time in London was short, almost too short. The next morning, we headed straight to the airport and flew to Munich.
For lunch, we visited an upscale, very red, restaurant recommended to us by Bryan's German colleague. He told us this was one of the best restaurants in Germany.
The food was excellent, though the pacing was really, really slow.
For the rest of our meals in Germany, we mostly ate at various beer halls. I had a lot of wiener schnitzel, a super thin (pounded flat), breaded and fried veal cutlet.
Deep fried pork knuckle was also extremely popular. I fell in love with the German potato dumplings, which reminds me of a cross between mashed potatoes and mochi. Soooooo good.
I loved the prevalence of fresh pretzels, which taste so good in Germany.
And of course, there's the beer. The wheat beers in Germany are awesome, and I really got to appreciate all the different types of wheat beers from various local producers.
When we weren't eating or drinking, we visited historical sites, like the the Residenz, the former royal palace of Bavaria from the 1500's to 1918.
Imagine being invited to a dinner in that dining hall!
The palace was beautiful, though it was also sobering to learn (and remember) that many parts of the building were not original or were still missing because of destruction from World War II.
On our last day, we visited Viktulien Markt, one of the most famous food markets in the entire city.
Not only are there tons of fresh fruits and vegetables for sale, there are also more types of cured meats than you've ever seen in your life.
Have you ever seen a broccoli, carrot, and cauliflower "sausage"?
One of the most fun things to do is to have lunch at the market.
We first wandered through the market, buying various different things from different shops. We then headed to the beer garden in the middle of the market.
There's plenty of seating, and it's fun to look out at the market while munching on different German snacks (e.g., potato salad, sauerkraut, pretzels, and sausages!).
Afterwards, we finished up the meal with cappuccinos from the market.
That afternoon, we took the train out into the suburbs to visit the Weinstephan Brewery.
Ha ha, I guess there aren't that many people eating pretzels and drinking beer in the beer garden on a chilly Monday afternoon.
Oh well, it was still TOTALLY worth it. I think I had my favorite beer here, the Weinstephan Vitus on tap. Soooo good.
Our three days in Munich passed way too quickly, and before you knew it, I was getting up at 4AM to catch a flight back to the U.S. Bryan would stay in Germany for another week, taking the train to Frankfurt and spending several days there before taking a similar early morning flight back to the U.S.
Good Night Munich (the view from our hotel room).
Stay tuned for more detailed posts on many of the adventures from London and Munich I briefly described in this post!