Hi everyone! My husband and I are beginning to plan a trip to Austria for 2015. My husband is a beer aficionado and would love to do a beer tour (or two). I was looking for tours that combine a bit of history, a bit of beer lore, and, of course, drinking beer. Something economical in price (i.e. an established group tour) would be ideal. We're planning to stop in Vienna (and maybe Salzburg) and were hoping to find something around there. Any advice would be helpful as internet searches are proving less than fruitful!
Thanks Carol! Unfortunately for him, my husband is stuck with me and I've been dreaming of visiting Austria. We're looking into spending some time in Germany as well, so perhaps something will surface there :)
Austria does brew beer, but it's more known for it's wine. Germany is beer country. At least one or more of the major breweries in Munich offer tours, if you'll be anywhere near there.
"According to RS, Czech beer is the best." He's one of the few that has such an opinion, then. The Czech republic has a few breweries that make good light lagers, but that's about it. Not much variety in that country.
Thank you Tom and David! Very helpful :)
We have been to the first three and they were great. All have good traditional Austrian cuisine as well.
Make sure to take time to go to an Heuriger for some fine Austrian wine as well.
Great, thanks Alex!
Augustiner Braustubl - this isn't a beer tour, but an incredible beer hall in Salzburg. It was once a monastery, and is now a beer hall and beer garden with some of the best beer I've ever had! Also in Salzburg, there is a Stiegl brewery beer tour, which we would have loved to go to, but ran out of time. Have fun!
I'll second the Augustiner in Salzburg. It and Andechs (45 mi. SW of Munich) are two of the really popular beer halls/gardens outside of Munich. They're the real deal.
We recently returned from Prague, Vienna and Budapest. We discovered "Free Tours" where tour guides work for tips. They can be easily found for just about every major European town, and they're well worth going on as soon as you arrive in any city.
But the "free tour" companies often have a nightlife tour or pub crawl tour around 6:00 p.m., and they introduce to the really great bars and night clubs--many of which are off the beaten path. And the people you tour with are often some "wild and crazy guys" from all over the world. Do it.
Just about every Austrian city has their own local brewery, and your husband wouldn't be disappointed with any of their products. If you're touring Tirol and the Austrian Alps, you're just a short distance from Munich. Any beer aficionado wouldn't miss that city.
Vienna is a wine and coffee city. Beer here is cheap and generally in cans - think Coors or Budweiser quality. If you go to Czech Republic or Bavaria/Salzburg, you will find people are more serious about the stuff there.
The only beer tour I am aware of in Vienna is with Ottakringer - the most popular beer in Vienna. Here is a link with some info:
As suggested above, however, there are a few restaurants in Vienna which brew their own beer, but do not offer tours. Alex has a good list. I would add that a stop in the Schweizerhaus might be worth doing as they serve the authentic Czech Budweiser beer there.
If you go to Salzburg, I second the recommendation of Augustiner.
Good add Emily for the Schweizerhaus. Try the Stelze while there Ashlee.
Where have you been Emily?
We fly out to Zurich 3 September and train over to Lech for 8 days of hiking (hope the weather is good), then over to Funes in Sudtirol to spend 7 days hiking the Dolomites. I hope to find Sturm in Lech while there!
Been on a grand adventure in Tuscany and Prague...life is good. Hope the weather warms up for you as it is quite chilly here at the moment.
Alex, Emily, and David, wonderful suggestions - thank you!
Glad you had a great adventure. 14 day outlook shows sunny skies and around 20c for Lech...we'll keep our fingers crossed and Thor will cross his paws.
Ashlee here is another brewery owned restaurant:
Emily is right about Ottakringer Bier, have your husband try the Helles. He will also find a plethora of Austrian beers served at the various cafes and restaurants.
Here is another fun restaurant down by the Rathaus called Cafe Einstein, they serve Zipfer there, I believe.
Austrian beer seems to combine well with Austrian foods. The canned beers (not a micro brew), including my namesake "Egger" beer, a Märzen lager, went well with the pretzels that I picked up afternoons for afternoon snacks. http://www.egger-bier.at/en/egger-maerzen.html
I topped off my checked duffle bag with a few cans of different Austrian Märzenbier. The filled cans are good to look at and the empty ones make good souvenir pencil/pen holders with the tops cut off. My sympathies to the carry-on only folks who can't bring back liquids in containers of 100 ml.
Thanks to you, too, Edgar and Laura!