Categories
design Franconia Germany marketing The Session

The Big Session Comeback Tour

Beer mat from the Hausbrauerei Altstadthof, Nuremberg.

We haven’t taken part in the session for a couple of years, mostly because we found ourselves struggling to fit in an opportunity to, e.g., drink a particular type of beer before it rolled around.

Anyway, it’s time to get back in the saddle so here we are again to talk about the art of beer labels, caps and coasters, for this month’s session hosted by HopHeadSaid.

We have a particular interest in commercial design and illustration and when it relates to beer, all the better. We’ve posted about it on more than one occasion and have been really enjoying this excellent blog about beer branding recently.

The image above is one of our favourite bits of beer-related design and, perhaps not so coincidentally, comes from one of our favourite breweries.

What’s not to like? There’s sans serif typography (we have some sympathy with the Helvetica nerds), a simple colour scheme reflecting the flag of Franconia and an equally simple graphic. All of this reminds us vividly of their pub in Nuremberg and their beers, all of which are also simple, unpretentious and clean.

You’ll note that the image above is a bit rough. It needed some restoration because this beermat, along with a stack of others from Germany, the Czech Republic and Belgium, lives in our kitchen and gets used every day. It’s a little bit of Nuremberg we can enjoy every day. As a result, it is covered in beer stains.

Mind you, that Satan cap art isn’t bad either, and nor are the twin labels for the Brooklyn/Schneider collaborations.

Categories
Beer styles Franconia Germany

Schlenkerla Helles

Last year, we met up with Ron Pattinson in Cask and spent a few hours discussing Franconia, East Germany and His Big Book. Ron spotted Schlenkerla Helles in the fridge and recommended it.

We’d not tried it before and loved it. There is no smoked malt in the beer but, being brewed in the same building and with the same equipment as their darker smoked beers, it can’t help but pick up a bit of smokiness.

We never got round to writing this up and, in the months since then, we haven’t seen it on sale in Cask. Our favourite London pub has recently, however, even further expanded it’s beer selection and the Helles has popped up again so were able to enjoy a couple of bottles this week.

In fact, if you’re a fan of Rauchbier, Cask now has several different varieties on offer, in addition to the usual suspects from Schlenkerla.

Categories
beer and food Franconia

Using rauchbier to fake a barbecue

Using rauchbier to fake barbecue-smoked meat is a clever idea. We’ll certainly be giving this a go.

Categories
Franconia pubs

Five great beer gardens in Würzburg

A pint of Wuerzburger Hofbrau Pils

1. Würzburger Hofbräukeller, Höchberger Straße 28

Where better to drink the stuff than at the brewery tap?  It’s a little walk out of the centre (about 10-15 minutes from the old bridge), but well worth it for the enormous garden.  This place inspired our latest trip — we thought about where we would most like to be in the world and planned the excursion around it.

2. Würzburger Hofbräu, Talaveraschlosschen

Another huge, leafy beer garden, next to a funny little building off the Mainausstrasse, in between the Friedensbrücke and the Brücke der Deutschen Einheit.

3. Biergarten an der Residenz (Würzburger Hofbräu)

This is basically a little scrap of wasteland next to the world-famous Residenz, but it shows how all you need is a couple of trees and a wooden shed to set up a beer garden. Not at all posh but nonetheless lovely.

4. Nikolashof and 5. Schutzenhof

These are both situated in the woods behind the Festung Marienburg, and have fabulous views across town.  Schutzenhof offers cheap and trashy schnitzels for all the family, whereas Nikolashof fancies itself a bit more, with a Japanese garden and rhubarb brulee on the menu.

The ticker may be particularly interested in Schutzenhof as it offers products from Wernecker, including Laurentius, an unfiltered Märzen beer brewed specially for the garden.  We didn’t care for it that much, but it’s nice to know it’s there.

To get to both places on foot, do not follow the signs, which are for road traffic and take you the long way round.  Instead, head for the Käppele from Nikolausstrasse, go up the steps behind it and you’ll find yourself on a little path that takes you first past the Nikolashof and then to the Schutzenhof (they’re about a five minute walk apart).

Categories
Franconia

Update: Bierkeller guide online

A couple of weeks back, we mentioned an excellent book we’d picked up in Würzburg. It reviewed every beer garden in Franconia. Erlangernick, who often comments over at Tandleman’s place, was kind enough to give us a bit of back history and alert us to the fact that a big chunk of it is also available online. Thanks, Nick!