Germans love their beers. The country has a strong drinking culture and produces some of the best beers in the world.
Germans call their beer ‘flüssiges Brot’ meaning ‘liquid bread’ that has become a part and parcel of their everyday life and binds the community together. In fact, such is the popularity of the drink, that the legal drinking age in Germany is 16 and even children join and drink along with their families.
Be it the pale ‘Pilsner’ beer or the popular malty beer ‘lager’, the beers are rich in flavors, colour, aroma and is made using the ancient crafts of beer making.
The beer culture is deep-rooted in Germany. The ‘Oktoberfest’ is one of the most celebrated beer festivals in Munich where thousands join in every year from all parts of the world to celebrate their love for this liquid gold. The festival upholds the 500-year-old history of “Reinheitsgebot” or the Beer Purity Law.
The Beer Purity Law was established in 1516 and in fact, many of the German brewers still produce beers in accordance to this law. The law states that beer may only be made from four major ingredients namely water, hops, malt, and yeast. But that doesn’t mean that all German beers taste the same.
German breweries scene has evolved quite a lot over the last century. The taste, color, and flavors have changed, but still, they have successfully adhered to the restrictions of the law and sustained their rich culture and heritage.
Here are the top 10 best beer breweries in Germany.
The Hofbräu München Brewery Tour
The Hofbräu München in Munich is one of the most famous breweries in Germany. The brewery opens its gate for public view every week. It is now a property of the State Government of Bavaria.
The brewery is visited by thousands of tourists every year and is a major source of tourist attraction.
The guided tour will help you to have real experience in learning interesting facts about brewing, processing, fermentation, and filling up of storage cans.
The tour takes about 60 to 90 minutes and costs around €10 to €15 a tour. At the end of the tour, you get to sample freshly tapped unfiltered Hofbräu beer over some delicious Bavarian snacks.
Andechs Monastery Brewery, Munich
The Andechs Monastery Brewery is a property run by the Benedictine monks of St. Boniface in the district of Starnberg, Munich.
The monks do not receive any contributions from the church. So, the earnings from the brewery are used to sustain and preserve their monastic life.
The monks of Andechs Monastery operate their own brewery house and they use the latest technologies to produce the beers. The beers that are made here are a blend of old Benedictine tradition and modern technology.
Erdinger Brewery Tour
Erdinger Weissbier brewery is known for its variety of wheat beers. The popular brewery conducts a 3-hour tour program that will give you a complete insight as to how the beer is brewed and bottled, the ingredients, and the final product.
After the tour, get a taste of popular German wheat beers over some traditional Bavarian snack at the Visitor Center.
The tours are offered in two languages German and English and are conducted in a group of 10. At the end of the tour, you will get a free souvenir group photo in the brewhouse.
You are advised to book the tours in advance. The tours are conducted from Monday to Saturdays.
This 1000-year-old brewery is a property of the Bavarian State Government and was once owned by the Benedictine monks.
One of the oldest breweries in the world, this brewery is a marriage of the modern state-of-the-art technology and the traditional German beer-making culture.
Visitors can take part in the guided tours of this old German brewery and get an idea about the brewing process of some of the most high-quality beers produced in Germany.
Beck’s Brewery in Bremen, Germany
The Beck’s Brewery originally known as the Kaiserbrauerei Beck & May Co. is one of the finest breweries in Germany.
The century-old brewery was founded by local brewer master named Heinrich Beck in 1873. The Beck’s beer bottles carry the company’s logo, a red shield with a white key; the key denoting St. Peter’s Cathedral in Bremen.
If you are beer enthusiast, take part in the guided tours of the Beck’s brewery. The tours can be really fascinating and will educate you about the fermentation processes and storage of the beers.
You can also visit the museum and get to know more about the history of the age-old brewery. Complete the tour with a two-minute film presentation.
The Smokebeer Factory of Bamberg
If you are in Bamberg, you must visit Schlenkerla, a historic beer pub cum brewery house right in the middle of the small town. The pub dates back to the early 1400s is known for its classic Smoked beer that will be served to you right from the traditional wooden barrels.
The brewery is now run by the 6th generation Trum family right beneath the cathedral in the old town of Bamberg.
Interestingly, the word Schlenkerla is derived from the Frankish word ‘schlenkern’ an expression which is used to describe the walk of a drunken man.
The dark, aromatic fermented beer has a unique taste and will gradually grow into you as you take more sips.
The secret of the smoked flavor comes from the age-old recipe of drying malt over an open fire which gives the beer its unique aroma.
Rechenberg Brewery in Saxony, Germany
The brewery museum was established in 1780. The historical building is one of the oldest breweries in Saxony and was remodeled in 1995.
The brewery still produces some of the finest German beers and are brewed using the brewing water from the deep wells of the brewery.
The old building has been preserved to its former glory and is still using vaulted cellars and some of the functional brewing machines.
Tourists are welcome to visit the Saxony Brewery Museum and experience the beautiful cozy atmosphere of the old malt house. The museum also has a restaurant where visitors can take rest and enjoy some freshly produced German beers and snacks.
Ayinger Brewery in Bavaria
The Ayinger Brewery in Bavaria has been acclaimed with multiple awards for their outstanding beer quality and the use of high-quality ingredients over generations. This 130-year-old brewery strictly follows the Purity Law of beer making and has preserved it for decades.
The brewery conducts a regular 2-hour tour in English, French, Russian, and Croatian. A private tour for a group of 15 people will cost you 150 Euros and for a group of 16 people 10 Euros each person only to be paid in cash.
Crew Republic Brewery, Munich
The Crew Republic Brewery is a modern-day brewery located in Glokenbach, Munich. Established in 2015, the brewery is new and sells some of the most unusual and intensively flavored beers to popular restaurants, bars, and even to the most celebrated Oktoberfest brewery festival.
The brewery was founded by Timm Schnigula and Mario Hanel who wanted to deviate from the usual German beers and produce something new.
Aromatic and unique, the Crew Republic beers have unique names like ‘Drunken Sailor’ or ‘Roundhouse Kick’.
If you are a beer enthusiast, you should definitely visit this modern upcoming brewery and get hold of some unique German beers.
Riegele BrauWelt Brewery
The Riegele Brewery is a perfect combination of tradition and modernity. Established in 1386 in Augsburg, Germany, this brewery specializes in craft beer and produces eight unique variations of it.
You can take a tour into the historical Riegele brewhouse and marvel the exquisite architecture and get fascinated by the brewing process of this old beer house.
The hour-long tour is conducted in a group of 15 to 45 persons. Visitors can register online or simply send a mail to the official website of the brewery.