Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Biergarten & Radler

The Story: Caroline, Radler. Radler, this is Caroline.
A big gulp German beer

I was lucky enough to venture to my family’s Old Country (Germany) once in 2009. On this trip I was introduced to a lovely summer beverage called a radler — it’s half beer, half lemonade.

This is a popular beverage for ladies who haven’t acquired a taste for bier. And, depending on the size of the serving and the establishment, this can also be a children’s drink.

My mother remembers going to a family biergarten with her Oma in Bavaria in the ‘60s and drinking a radler from a kiddie sized cup (it was lemonade with a splash of beer), while her grandmother daintily sipped the same beverage. 

Well, my encounter with the drink was far from darling …

It all started with a bike tour through Munich that weaved its way into the heart of Englischer Garten, the Chinesischer Turm (Chinese Tower) with biergarten.  Everyone was going up to a kiosk and grabbing giant HoffBrau beers. I thought, I’ll play it safe, I’ll get the one that’s half lemonade.

There my Dad and I are with our Radlers in the Englischer Garten.
Well, I drank half of it.  Now, the glass was the size of my head, so half was no simple feat.   Truly, I wasn’t drunk, but that ride back on the bike was a little more difficult than the way there.  Somehow we all made it back in one piece – some of the other tourists had two of steins of beer!

Giant German beers take two.  Here we are at a biergarten in Augsburg.

As I reminisce about my German adventures, I get just a little nostalgic.  Luckily, I can quench this at home with a little taste of Bavaria …

Getrank: Radler
Reach for a cold one … but you’ll need two hands to lift it. 

Get a stein and fill it with a German beer, not a dunkel.* Now, fill it the rest of the way with lemonade.

Just have a regular glass? Fill it a little more than halfway with beer and top it off with lemonade.


*When Robert and I made the beverage last week, we used Warsteiner beer.  

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